One distinct advantage to spending time in California, is that our winters are moderate enough to enjoy without numb noses and shivers. Monterey, in particular, comes to life during this time of year with beautiful wildlife and an exceptional roster of indoor destinations.
Check out this guide for recommendations on how to warm up with some of the region’s most sought after varietals, exploring the outdoors with a nice cool breeze, and a few more of our favorite winter activities in Monterey.
The Monterey Bay Aquarium is one of the most majestic and visually memorable destinations in the region. Located right on the water, the institution is home to over 600 species of marine wildlife showcased through brilliant displays and massive exhibits. When you visit The Monterey Bay Aquarium this winter, you can hang out with penguins, sea otters, jellyfish, and octopi among many more sea creatures.
When booking your upcoming trip to Monterey, be sure to check out The Sanctuary Beach Resort’s special Aquarium Package. The reservation includes spacious accommodations at our oceanfront resort, as well as two tickets to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, which are good for two consecutive days and valued at $100.
One of the best ways to stay warm during the cooler winter months in Monterey, is to fill up on the area’s best food and wine. The local Central Coast region is famous around the world for its high-quality and variety of wine, as well as for having an eclectic selection of seafood, vegetation, and acclaimed restaurants.
Our absolute favorite place to wine and dine in Monterey is right here at The Sanctuary Beach Resort’s onsite restaurant Saltwood Kitchen & Oysterette. The regional wine list stands out alongside a menu of wide-fired dishes comprised of local ingredients. Seafood lovers can explore a brilliant variety of oysters, wild California fish, mussels, and shrimp here as well. Check out this blog post from The Sanctuary Beach Resort for more examples on Where To Wine & Dine in Monterey.
Unlike snowy destinations with harsh winters, Monterey actually maintains bearable temperatures throughout the year. In fact, if you get out and exercise, then the winter breeze from Monterey Bay is actually quite lovely. This is why going out on a hike is one of our favorite winter activities to enjoy in the area. In addition to the health benefits, checking out one of the following trails will also help you discover unforgettable views of the coast.
The Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail runs 18-miles along Monterey Bay. The water, beaches, and coastal cliffs all create exceptional scenery for this hike. The trail also brings hikers along a series of the county’s most well known attractions including Old Fisherman’s Wharf, Cannery Row, Lovers Point, and Castroville. For some more recommendations on hiking in Monterey, check out this blog post from The Sanctuary Beach Resort.
Another one of the best winter activities travelers can enjoy in Monterey involves heading out and discovering some seasonal wildlife. Throughout the year, a diverse population of animals flows in and out of the region, and right now you can go out and see a beautiful array of creatures from the sea and sky.
Harbor seal pups, or baby seals, tend to frequent The Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary between February and April. Also, if you head out on one of the many whale watching excursions taking place in Monterey this winter, you’ll give yourself a shot at spotting some massive gray whales and orcas. Winter birds here are also gorgeous, and the variety includes surfbirds, buffleheads, brown pelicans, and ducks.
Planning a visit to the shores of Monterey Bay? Experience the region like a local, following our insider recommendations on the Sanctuary Beach Resort blog!