Thursday, January 18, 2018

Carmel-By-The-Sea January 2018

A wonderful perk of John traveling for work is the chance to tag-along and see some amazing places. One such place is Carmel-by-the-Sea.  Having been born and raised in California I'm surprised that I had never been here.  It is quite a beautiful little town and we had a blast!  After much research (what?  who me?) I settled on Coachmen's Inn.. in the heart of Carmel .. and am so glad I did.  This place was awesome!! The location was perfect and the amenities were equally amazing.  Breakfast every morning was a delicious spread of quiche, coffee, fresh squeezed OJ, fresh fruit, oatmeal     and so much more.  No reason to leave hungry.. So good and all included in the price of the room.  And each evening they had another spread of fresh cut veggies, hummus, cheese and crackers and red & white wine and fresh baked cookies each afternoon.  We couldn't wait to return back to the hotel after a day of sightseeing to see what surprise cookie awaited us.


     We flew into San Jose and it was a short 90 minute drive down to Carmel.  The drive down Highway 17 and Highway 1 is absolutely beautiful..  Lots of farm country and ocean views as well.  After checking in and relaxing a bit we decided to walk down the hill about 1/2 mile to the beach to watch the sunset and enjoy the beach and ocean waves.  The weather was perfect and I was happy to be spending it with the one I love most.

Dinner the first night was at a little place called Tommy's Wok and it was delicious.  We shared Orange Chicken, wontons and hot tea.  So yummy!! Saturday morning found us up early eating a delicious breakfast on the hotel deck.  Our plan for the day was "17 Mile Drive".. where we drove through Pebble Beach, Fanshell Overlook, Bird Rock, China Rock, Spanish Bay, The Lone Cypress, Point Joe, and Restless Sea.  This drive is not to be missed on your trip to Carmel.  We took about 2 1/2 hours stopping at several places to enjoy the view, walk on the beach and take tons of pics.                      

After a few hours of absolute beauty we headed down Highway 1 to Bixby Bridge which was incredibly beautiful although looking at it made my hands sweat and my heart race.  It's an amazing structure to behold.  It had been a long day and we were ready to head back but not before making a quick stop at Garrapata State Park Beach and picking up a snack and drink at the cutest little market on the side of Highway 1.

Most know John and I went to high school together and have, thus, known each other most of our lives.  If you know us well you also know that we're very down to earth and not much for fancy food and drink so it won't surprise many to find that we found ourselves at John Silvers for lunch... It's something we've always loved and we don't have any near us so we had a nostalgic lunch that was actually very good.  After a brief rest at the hotel we headed up Highway 1 to The Sunset Bar where we had a drink and watched the amazing sunset from a different vantage point.  None the less beautiful, I still enjoyed the sunset on the beach much more. You could hear the ocean waves and put your toes in the sand.

After another delicious breakfast Sunday morning we headed out into Carmel to find Hugh Comstock's Fairytale Cottages.  They were built back in the 1940's for about $1500 and today are worth about $4 million each.  They're so adorable and fun to look at.  We stopped by Monterey and walked out on the pier and saw an adorable otter swimming and eating and a bunch of seals making quite a racket... Our next stop was at the end of another amazing drive through Monterey and up into Pacific Grove on the way to Point Pinos Lighthouse.  The rock formations along Highway 68 were utterly amazing. We stopped several times on the way to and from the Lighthouse to hike the rocks and listen to the waves.  Just when you thought you had seen it all there was more beauty and amazing views around every corner.  


We had both forgotten how mesmerizing the ocean and waves can be.. And the waters in and around Carmel are so much more beautiful than the waters around Long Beach where we both grew up.  We could definitely spend a lot of time here and I'm sure we will be back.  After another day of sightseeing we went to meet a friend for drinks and dinner and I was sad to have to come back to the hotel to pack to head home on Monday.  I am so grateful I got to visit this amazing and beautiful area of our country.  It's one of my favorite destination locations and can't wait to return.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Million Dollar Highway

It was a few weeks before I was to start back to work... this time Full-Time.. at Progressive.... While it's very exciting and I'm looking forward to a new challenge and learning new things, I have been blessed to not have to had to work full time for many many years.  (Thanks honey)

So, we thought before work started, why not take a long weekend and take a drive that John had already done a few years ago with the boys aka Ryan and Greg on motorcycles.  He'd always told me how amazingly beautiful it was and wanted to share it with me... so off we went.

Of course, if you know us, you know we rented a convertible so we could enjoy the view even more and the weather was incredible.

Our first stop was pizza in Canon City... It's super yummy and we hardly ever make it down there so
we made sure to stop and enjoy.

Our stop for the first night was  Montrose which puts us right at the start of "The Million Dollar Highway" so named for it's amazing views.  Dinner in Montrose was at the Horsefly Brewery.  Food and service were both very good.  Up early the next morning super excited to see these amazing views.. While starting our drive down 550 we saw on the side of the road what looked like a fun antique/car/junk store.. Ok... so not so much junk.. but John made a quick u-turn and we stopped in.  After a tour around all the cool sights we started the amazing drive down the Million Dollar Highway.  John had not been exaggerating when he explained the beauty to me before our trip.    

Around every corner was another spectacular sight to see.  We stopped in Silverton to do a bit of sightseeing, shopping and grab a scoop of ice cream.   Then it was back on the road again.  Next stop, Durango.  We had left over pizza from the day before so John had a great idea to stop by the river and do a little picnic with pizza and watermelon.  It was delicious.   Our stop the second night was in a quaint little town called Pagosa Springs.  Our hotel had an indoor pool and hot tub so we got some nice relaxing time before we went out to dinner.  Dinner of street tacos and nachos at Kips were really good followed by a relaxing stroll down by the river.

Unfortunately the next morning had us heading back towards home. One final sight to see before we made it home was a quick hike up to Treasure Falls.  It was definitely worth the stop.  It had been a relaxing, peaceful, fun-filled weekend with the person I love most.