Just a stone’s throw from the Carmel Valley Lodge, Carmel, aka “Carmel-By-The-Sea,” is a tiny seaside artists’ colony that has managed to retain its small-town appeal and charm. Home to notable celebrities such as actor/director and one-time mayor Clint Eastwood, ardent animal lover/actress Doris Day, and singer/actor Bing Crosby, Carmel and neighboring Monterey offer a plethora of activities and attractions sure to pique the interest of your entire family. Here are the top 6 things to do in Carmel CA in the springtime.
- Stay at the Carmel Valley Lodge: Your Carmel vacation starts at Carmel Valley Lodge, ideally situated just minutes from famed Carmel-by-the-Sea, the Big Sur Coast, the Monterey Bay, Laguna Seca Raceway, and the Monterey Airport. After a day of sightseeing, enjoy a dip in our heated pool, unwind in our spa, or sample wine by the firepit. Awaken to a great cup of locally roasted specialty coffee and our signature gourmet breakfast, or our simple continental breakfast. Your canine family members are welcome too!
- Carmel Art Walk: The second Saturday of every month, from 5-8 PM (PST), the Carmel Art Walk travels from the Kevin Milligan Gallery and ends at Bennett Sculpture. Along the way, you’ll visit over 20 artist-owned galleries featuring a wide array of works in a variety of media: paintings, drawings, sculpture, and glass – all in styles from contemporary and abstract to fine art. Best of all? It’s FREE!
- Historic Carmel Mission: Founded by Father Junipero Serra (circa 1797), “Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo” is one of the most authentically restored California Missions. Saint John Paul II beatified Father Serra in 1988, and his remains are now buried underneath the sanctuary floor. Guided tours are available for groups of 15 or more; individuals can take a self-guided tour. This is an active parish, and masses are held regularly.
- Carmel Beach: The scene of activity almost every hour of the day, the pristine white sands of Carmel Beach beckon all creatures, including our four-legged friends (Carmel Beach is dog-friendly!). Free parking is available in the parking lot on Ocean Avenue, along with free, on-street parking on Camino Real and along Scenic Road. You might also explore surfing, organized beach volleyball, beach campfire gatherings, and a walk or jog along the Scenic Bluff Path.
- Wine: Over 20 wine tasting rooms home to some of the most prestigious and well-known local wineries are within walking distance of our Lodge. Enjoy the hearty atmosphere of each tasting room while you get an up close visit with the winemakers, and envelope yourself in the charm that is Carmel-By-The-Sea.
- Walkable Carmel: Ocean Avenue is the main street, spanning from Highway 1 to Carmel Beach. Ocean Ave. features trendy boutiques and a litany of restaurants and cafes sure to entice the gourmand. The Carmel Heritage Society offers historical walking tours featuring 25 points of interest including The Forest Theater, established in 1910 as the first outdoor theater west of the Mississippi, and the Comstock Houses, aka the “Hansel & Gretel” houses, which are unique, fairy-tale style homes built in the 1920s by Hugh Comstock.
- Festivals: Carmel always has “something going on,” especially in the spring. Check out these popular spring events when you visit:
- Pebble Beach Food & Wine Festival: April 16-19, 2020. For the gourmand, the “PBFW” is THE event to attend on the West Coast. 100 celebrity chefs and upwards of 250 select wineries combine to create a 4-day bacchanalia unrivaled anywhere! Get your tickets now!
- 28th Annual Winemakers Celebration: May 20, 2020 at 1pm. Presented by Monterey County Vintners & Growers Association, this long standing annual event is a 4-hour celebration of the amazing wines and epicurean delights found in picturesque Carmel. Click here for tickets.
- 27th Annual Carmel Art Festival & Sculpture in the Park: May 15-17, 2020. This non-profit annual event is for the edification of people of all ages about the visual arts, and directly benefits the Youth Art Collective, which provides studio space, mentoring, and opportunities to countless young people on the Monterey Peninsula. This is a FREE public event!
- Carmel Bach Festival: Although this world-class, 15-day music celebration is technically a “summer” event (July 18 through August 1), tickets go on sale March 1 so make sure you get your tickets NOW! America’s most important Bach festival features performances, lectures and educational events, and not only focuses on the maestro himself, J.S. Bach-but also on all the composers he influenced (Handel, Mozart, Brahms, and more).
At Carmel Valley Lodge, we also offer some fun and unique getaway specials and vacation packages that you won’t find anywhere else on the Monterey Peninsula. Have an idea of your own for that special weekend on the Bay? Just call us and let’s see what we can come up with! Book direct to receive these specials and packages not available anywhere else at (831) 659-2261 or book online.