November 30, 2007
Today we are going to Monterey. We got ready, ate breakfast at the hotel then headed down the highway to Monterey. We got there and found a parking garage right by the Aquarium which was our first stop. We walked around there for about an hour and a half. We weren't really impressed but we did see some cool stuff. They have a white shark that they got after a fisherman caught it in his net. He called the Aquarium as soon as he caught it and they took him in. He is still under a year old so he is only a little over 5 feet long.
We also got to watch some sea otters play. They are SO cute!
After we walked all the way through, we went outside and looked for a place for lunch. We found Willy's Smokehouse BBQ & Grill. I had a cheeseburger and Lee had a grilled chicken sandwich. both were very good, but we are both very ready to not be eating out every meal! Today is a chilly day, so we decided to go ahead and do the 17 Mile Drive. We followed the signs and headed along the coast towards the entrance gate. Along the way on Oceanview Blvd, we found a nice spot to pull in and take some pictures of the surf.
Boy is it chilly....So windy!!!!! We headed towards the entrance gate again and paid our $9 to drive on the famous route. Our first stop for pictures was at Point Joe. I think I got out of the car for a whole 30 seconds or so! Our next stop was at The Lone Cypress.
This was where a cypress tree was sitting out on a perch and has been there for over 250 years! We continued around the drive seeing HUGE houses along the way. We finally made it around to the famous Pebble Beach Golf Links. All of the courses in this area are so beautiful! I would love to play out here some day. After passing Pebble Beach, the road took us away from the coast and into the hills where we got to see a lot more huge homes. Some are for sale! Ha! We became pretty bored with the drive so we decided to go to Carmel. Not much to see in Carmel unless we wanted to park and walk around the town. It was too cold for that, so we headed down Hwy 1 towards Big Sur. We couldn't be happier with that decision!! Just south of Carmel, we stopped at Vista Point to take some more photos. Just gorgeous! We continued along the coast and came across Rocky Creek Bridge.
This bridge was built in 1932 and was the bridge I was looking forward to seeing! Lee got out to take some pictures of the bridge and I decided to hop out to take a look too. It was so unbelievably windy that we both decided it would be much safer to get back in the car and continue on the way down the coast. This road is so curvy and you are right on the edge of the cliffs looking straight down into the ocean. So scary, but so beautiful at the same time. We came around a corner only to find another bridge, twice as big as the Rocky Creek Bridge. THIS is the bridge I was excited about!! I had seen it in commercials and the Tour of California bike race went across it and I remember being so excited to see it and drive over it. We pulled off to the side along a gravel dirt road to get a better picture of it. I got out of the car and walked over to look down. I couldn't even see the bottom! This was the Bixby Creek Bridge, also built in 1932. It looks exactly like the Rocky Creek Bridge but was probably twice as long.
This drive was SO worth it. I will suggest this drive instead of paying for 17 Mile Drive any day of the week! We continued along the winding road along the coast. This road has been in so many commercials, TV shows and movies. And righfully so! AMAZING!! We made it to Big Sur and pulled into Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, paid our admission and drove around for a bit. We started to get hungry so we headed back to Monterey to get some sunset pictures and find a place to eat for our last night. We stopped at the same pull-off on Oceanview Blvd. to get some more pictures but the sun had already set. The ocean still looked amazing so Lee put on his jacket and hat and grabbed the camera and tripod to get some pics. I thought Lee and the camera were going to blow over into the water!
He hopped back in the car and we drove back towards the town and found a restaurant called Lattitudes at Lovers Point. they sat us by the fireplace, which was PERFECT! We wanted to take our time here since it was our last night, so we ordered a bottle of Napa Ridge 2006 Sauvignon Blanc and their calamari and artichoke hearts appetizer. We took our time before we ordered our meals. Lee ordered the prime rib and shrimp scampi special and I ordered the Chef's Choice which was a pasta dish with the chef's choice of seafood. It included mussels, clams and salmon in it. Delicious! We were greeted by the chef and owner Tene Shake. He has his own local cooking show here. We finished the evening with coffee and dessert. Lee had pumpkin pie (which he was DYING to have since we didn't have it at Thanksgiving) and I had an apple tort. A perfect ending to our honeymoon! We headed back to Santa Cruz to get some sleep before out last day.