This is the third post in my series covering my recent escapades and adventures in California. For more, check out Leslie’s California Travel Log.
Carmel-by-the-Sea, or just Carmel (pronounced car-MEL) has a long and rich history of arts and culture. Artists, writers, and musicians flocked to the village in 1906 after an earthquake destroyed San Francisco, and it became a bohemian refuge of sorts, holding regular plays and recitals, as well as lectures and dance events. The quaint little coastal town was esteemed enough to receive fond mention in Jack London’s novel, The Valley of the Moon. (Source)
Being an artsy sort of person myself, I enjoyed exploring around Carmel. I would describe the town as it is now as an upscale, eclectic residential and tourist district. (I think the photo at the top of this post reflects that description.) Visiting here and walking along the rows of “downtown” shops in the foggy morning felt restful and was a good in-between day after the aquarium and before hitting the big city of San Francisco.
We spent the night at Green Lantern Inn, a cozy and quiet complex of cottage-like rooms all annexed together. This was my first time staying at a bed & breakfast, and it was so much more fun than a hotel. I would gladly come back here to stay! Each suite had a unique name – ours was ‘Walnut’ – and was outfitted with updated 1920’s-esque interior decor.
Early 20th century paintings hung on either side of the bed, and navy and red accents gave the room a linear art deco feel. (Just ignore the venti Starbucks cup and cell phone, not-so-antique additions to the room we brought in ourselves!)
Morning came and breakfast was served in the Inn’s front office, or rather, a homey living room complete with several small tables for dining. Our hostess was incredibly polite and the food was good – a smorgasbord of options included make-your-own waffles, cinnamon raisin toast, jams, jellies, cereals, and egg casseroles. They were also super-stocked on coffees and teas to my happy finding.
After breakfast and a reading break, we went on to Carmel Plaza for some window shopping until the fog lifted and we headed out for San Francisco.
Here are some snapshots from the plaza.
We had such a relaxing time in Carmel. It was a pretty place to stay, and so quiet and easy to navigate. If I was ever going to move to California, it would be wonderful to find a peaceful little town like this to call home – or be able to visit on the weekends. (Although, I am pretty content in my little midwestern suburb!)
The next post will be all about the Golden Gate Bridge and the boat ride we took Monday evening out across the San Francisco bay.