Monterey Peninsula...Several Visits (World/US&C)

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Flag of United States  , California
Wednesday, September 26, 2007

I have been to the Monterey/Carmel area a few times, mostly as a kid. It is a rugged coastal area that is breathtakingly beautiful. One thing I did *not* know, until I read the section in the book, is that Monterey was California's first capital. Or, perhaps I knew and forgot. It's an interesting fact, anyway.

One thing the area is known for is that it is a stopping point for migrating monarch butterflies. I remember seeing this when I was, I dunno, probably in my early teens. It was very cool. Big eucalyptus trees were just covered with the creatures, making the trees shimmer and undulate to the beat of fluttering wings.

Another attraction in the area is the Monterey Bay Aquarium. I have been there a couple times, the most memorable being on a high school advanced science class trip. Of course, what had us enthralled were not the sharks, fish, and other amazing sea creatures on site; it was the fact that they were filming a Star Trek movie. I'm afraid we got a lesson in Moviemaking 101, rather than an important education in marine biology. We had great fun watching Spock, Capt. Kirk and the other stars stride past us to perform their lines.

Other fun things I have done in the area is stroll along Cannery Row (fun restaurants), drove 17-Mile Drive along the coast and championship golf coarses, and explore the quaint town of Carmel. This area is gorgeous and well worth a visit, or two.
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