The sun is out. The birds are chirping. The ocean is calling your name. With summer here, now is the time to go exploring. If you are creative – or desire to get in touch with your creative side – the Monterey Peninsula and Bay area, specifically, are filled with enough opportunities and activities to fill your artistic summer bucket list. With unmatched natural beauty and vibrant, small-town charm, the region will give you months of new places to visit and fun things to do (with plenty left to try next time!).
Here are 6 ways to boost your brain’s creative side this summer:
1. Snap photos in Monterey State Historic Park
Come spend a day where the Spanish landed in 1602. Enjoy the rich history and impressive architecture of some of the oldest and most beautiful buildings in California. Tour gardens and walkways; see buildings and wharfs. Travel by foot or enjoy a bicycle ride. Bring your camera and look for unusual or creative objects or angles. Fill a book with everything your senses experience. The options are many! Learn more here.
2. Create sketches in Asilomar State Beach
Largely unknown to tourists or visitors, this beach is one of the hidden gems of the peninsula. Take a sketch pad, journal or watercolors and spend an afternoon or early evening recreating what you see. Truly, a magnificent scene of exploding color and light unfolds on the ocean just before the sun sets. Whether you are a seasoned artist or have never tried drawing or painting, it makes no difference… After all, the memory will be one you cherish either way. (And if you have time, duck across the street to the Asilomar Conference Grounds where you are welcome to enjoy the dunes and observe the unique architecture of the many conference buildings.) Find out more.
3. Enjoy a calming walk on the Pacific Ocean Trail
Come reflect on memories or important decisions in a place that will give you clarity of thought unlike any you’ve known. The trail that stretches between Pacific Grove and Monterey is one of the most stunning walks on earth. With fields of wild flowers and miles of salt water, you are sure to be inspired as you walk. Tired? Stop and rest on a nearby bench or look for tiny bits of nature to carry home with you. Look for the Point Pinos Lighthouse along the way. It remains the oldest, longest-operating lighthouse anywhere on the coast. Learn more here.
4. Take a scenic drive from Pacific Grove to Carmel
Specifically, take the famous 17-mile drive (starting in Pacific Grove) that winds around the coastline and passes many famous attractions along the way. Roll the windows down, put your favorite music on, and let the wind whip your hair and sting your face. Enjoy glimpses of well-known golf courses and celebrity mansions. Savor the beauty of 5,300 acres of untouched Monterey Cypress trees and natural scenery, almost too good to be true. Click here for additional info.
5. Tour an art gallery in Carmel
Since the 17-mile drive ends in Carmel, it makes sense to visit any of the 100 art galleries that fill just a one-mile radius of the city. In an explosion of color and life, the downtown village is an artist’s paradise. See art demonstrations and open galleries at every turn. Enjoy a leisurely afternoon ducking into the shops and finding inspiration for your next idea or dream project. See the space where renown and novice artists are welcome to share their art side by side. Learn more here.
6. Visit Forest Hill
A vibrant, full-service retirement community unlike any other, Forest Hill is known for its distinctive architecture and impressive, historical main building. Known for its legendary dining, breathtaking ocean views and unlimited creative outlets, you may find your next friend in the most beautiful retirement community in California. Learn more.
Located in Pacific Grove on the Monterey Peninsula, Forest Hill is a full-service retirement community unlike any other. With a unique and stunning setting, the core of the community lives in an elegantly renovated historic hotel, originally built in 1924. This setting combines the best of modern convenience with classic appeal. Enjoy views of the Monterey Bay and the Pacific Ocean in a community with unique architectural features, beautiful landscaping and a variety of apartments and cottages. Contact us to schedule a tour of our stunning retirement community in Monterey.