Finally we reached Monterey via the Big Sur, it took way longer to get here than I planned but if you read my previous post you’ll know the long drive was lovely and I wouldn’t have changed anything.
After arriving in Monterey and dumping the car & bags at our hotel (Best Western, cheap as chips!) the blue sky had turned in to grey\white cloudy sky and the wind had picked up a little bit. Monterey bay is next to a massive under water canyon which is 2 miles deep at the deepest point and 292 miles long. Because of this bay there’s loads of yummy food for a diverse range of Ocean mammals. Knowing this we pre-booked a Whale watching tour with Monterey bay Whale Watching, apparently they’re the only whale watching tour in Monterey with proper posh Marine Biologists on board. Sadly because of the wind they cancelled the tour – and Mr Clever didn’t check his emails before we arrived so we turned up the whale watching hut on Fisherman’s Wharf in sensible warm clothes all ready to go only to find out there were no trips that day. Oh well!
You can’t quite see them but in the second photo there are loads of Heron’s (I think they are Heron’s although they look a bit like Storks to me). So instead of the whale watching tour we decided to go stuff our faces & get a bit fluffy on more beer & cocktails. We found a Hawaiian\Caribbean restaurant bear by (yup you guessed it on Trip Advisor), it was called Hula’s Island Grill. It was super busy inside so we sat outside under a space heater thingy.
The staff are really friendly at Hula’s & the menu has loads of interesting choices – we went with Hawaiian ceviche as a starter which was fresh white fish cured in citrus, coconut milk, chilli and garlic. It came with little crispy things on the side and it was sooooo nice (see below).
Then I had a spicy Ahi Steak (Tuna) sandwich with sweet potato fries and slaw (yumm!) Leigh had Luau Pork sandwich (pulled pork) which was described on the menu as “heaven on a bun” and I have to say it was close. Hula Island Grill advertise that their buns come from La Brea Bakery in LA which is apparently one of the best bakeries in the world!? It was jolly good.
Cannery Row – the last Sardine cannery closed in 1973 here. Yeah OK now it is a massive tourist trap (not sure if I would recommend eating here) but it’s a really cool place especially if you like shopping for tat.
Bubba Gump with Leigh trying on Forest Gumps shoes.
There is so much more to do in Monterey – I’ve read that the Monterey Bay Aquarium is pretty good, and obviously if you visit the whale watching boat tours are a must. Just check your email before you arrive and maybe plan something else in case of bad weather. Or just get drunk and eat copious amounts of really good Hawaiian food (that works too).
I didn’t meet Clint Eastwood, turns out he’s no longer Mayor of Carmel it was over 20 years ago (Clint Eastwood is my favourite actor) and I still haven’t read John Steinbeck’s Cannery Row but I might now. Goodbye Monterey, on to San Francisco (excited!).