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Kids, commercial Cannery row for seals, or quaint carmel?

Kids, commercial Cannery row for seals, or quaint carmel?

May 21st, 2010, 09:37 AM
  #1  
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Kids, commercial Cannery row for seals, or quaint carmel?

I'm going round and round regarding choosing a hotel. I have three boys (16, 13, and 11). Cannery row sounds really commercial and that's just not our thing, BUT staying in a hotel where the boys can see seals/otters in their natural environment sounds like something they would love. Were we live, we have manatees out back, not seals and otters. : )
Yet, carmel sounds so quaint. (more for adults?)
We only have one night here and one night somewhere down by Cambia before we head to the San Bernardino mountains. We've never been to California, so I'm struggling to make the right choice.
Help?
hibiscushouse is offline  
May 21st, 2010, 12:04 PM
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there's also the aquarium in Monterey. It's an excellent one, and there is an otter habitat in a huge tank in the aquarium. And a huge fish tank that contains lots of things like tuna and halibut, and an occasional shark.
charnees is offline  
May 21st, 2010, 12:31 PM
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Your kids will prefer Monterey (I have sons 12 and 14, we've been to these areas), and you would probably prefer Carmel. I'd keep the kids happy and spend the night in Monterey but you need to make your own choice.
padams421 is offline  
May 21st, 2010, 12:44 PM
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I agree with Monterey. And actually, having grown up spending time on the water, I really love the sea life (and sounds) there, too. Though we've never kayaked, I bet your sons would love it.
SusanCS is offline  
May 21st, 2010, 12:45 PM
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I'm leaning towards more towards Monterey as well. Really planned to steer clear of Cannery row, but in reading more about it, it may be worth it in order to look outside and see the sea life.
Doesn't appear as though some of the waterfront hotels really want kids. Any suggestions where you readily peer over the backside to see the seals, etc?
We aren't leaving San Fran until mid morning, so we prob. won't have time to fit the aquarium in. Which is fine, since we have some good ones at home.
hibiscushouse is offline  
May 21st, 2010, 12:50 PM
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Just keep them away from the "outlet" shops near Cannery Row.

Stu Dudley
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May 21st, 2010, 01:13 PM
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They aren't shoppers at all, so that shouldn't be a problem. They like boy mischief and adventures too much. Seals and otters frolicking about fit right into their interests. Pacific Grove is also an area of intrigue for the same reasons. Don't like the look of that Asilomar conference center (the accommodations at least), but have kicked that area around as an option as well.
But I keep going back to being able to peer over a hotel balcony and watching the fun and how cool of an experience that would be for them.
hibiscushouse is offline  
May 21st, 2010, 03:21 PM
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There are plenty of places to see the sea animals along Cannery Row, near the wharf, and in Pacific Grove - so if you don't find a hotel waterfront hotel that fits your needs, I wouldn't worry too much. Although a balcony over the water would be way cool.

Along Cannery row is the Clement Hotel, which has a nice public walkway over the water around it. To the right of the hotel, past some shops, is a small beach where you can see the animals too. And all along that stretch there are places.

Of course, the whole coast in Pacific Grove is great for watching sealife.

And down around the wharf is another good place - there are some small beaches there, and then the animals like to hang out under the wharf. We took a short boat tour of the harbor last year and saw a ton of sea animals.
november_moon is online now  
May 21st, 2010, 04:29 PM
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We stayed at Monterey Bay Inn. It worked well for us.
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May 21st, 2010, 05:47 PM
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The rooms at the hotels on Cannery Row that hang out over the water are a real treat to stay in due to the Monterey Bay views. However, be aware that seals and otters don't necessarily hang out near any particular hotel so there is no guarantee that you'll see them from your room. It is actually unlikely. The best way to see seals and otters is to walk a long the Monterey Recreation Trail that skirts the rocky shores from Fisherman's Wharf in Monterey south toward Pacific Grove. As an option to walking the trail you can rent bikes.
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May 21st, 2010, 08:10 PM
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So, would it be safe to say that a stay at a hotel in Pacific Grove would be a better option? No doubt waterfront lodging on Cannery Row is quiet dear to the pocket book. So if it's not for the reasons stated, I'd be just as happy not spending the extra $'s.
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May 21st, 2010, 08:29 PM
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I have been to conferences at Asilomar. You get a relaxed, away from it all, outdoorsie feel there. No TVs. Rooms vary from original historic to modern hotel rooms and some are very large. There is a pool. I don't know if you have an option, but dinner is included. The food is better than usual buffet type food. The grounds are lovely but you aren't that close to Cannery Row.

I have not been to the beach there other than to look at it. There is one beach I always see a lot of surfers at and another that looks like it is more for tide pooling.

Asilomar is always booked and I have never had any luck trying to get in other than for a conferences.
Ronda is offline  
May 22nd, 2010, 04:03 AM
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While it's expensive, we love the rooms overlooking the water at Monterey Plaza.
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May 22nd, 2010, 06:42 AM
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Just to clarify what is meant by a "bay view" or an "ocean view" room. If staying in a bay/ocean view room at the Monterey Bay Inn, do they mean the bay is looking off towards the northwest towards Fisherman's Shoreline Park? As opposed to a ocean view room at the Monterey Plaza? I assume there is more to look out at if you have the bay room view???
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May 22nd, 2010, 07:07 AM
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The meaning of the terms bay view and ocean view are used loosely and vary by hotel-----so you need to ask the reservations agent exactly what you will have a view of. Some rooms you will have a view across the bay out into the ocean --mostly all water view. Some rooms you will see part of the bay water and part of the shore line.
Pacific Grove is a fun place to stay. It's always a personal judgement/budget call regarding whether water view rooms are worth the extra money. My philosophy is always: If you got it, spend it. If you don't got it, don't go into debt.
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May 22nd, 2010, 07:15 AM
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Their website says "perched over Monterey Bay"

http://www.montereyplazahotel.com/
SusanCS is offline  
May 22nd, 2010, 07:47 AM
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I guess my confusion stems from where I am from our bay is a body of water separated from the "ocean" (Gulf) by land. From the pictures of what is described as bay views in Monterey it appears that they are referring to the ocean but looking more towards the mainland. And an ocean view is just that..only the ocean. Because from google map, I don't see a bay as I know it anywhere in Monterey.
I would think there's more activity to view if you have a bay view. Correct? I guess I'll call them to clarify.
Monterey Plaza is so much more expensive than Monterey Bay Inn. Any opinions as to why?
(I'm getting close to booking, so bear with me plse.)
hibiscushouse is offline  
May 22nd, 2010, 09:55 AM
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M. Plaza is more upscale and elegant than MBI, hence the difference in cost. MBI is fine for a family. Monterey Bay is indeed a bay. It is a very large wide open-mouthed bay so you could consider it the ocean that comes into a large indentation in the coast of California. It's not like the bay you describe in your post.
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May 22nd, 2010, 10:29 AM
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Keep in mind montereybob's prior post, having a room with view of Monterey Bay (which is so huge to you it will look like the ocean) does not guarantee that there will be sea otters and seals frolicking outside your room. I can only reinforce his comments--seals, sea lions and otters can be observed from the Monterey Trail through Pacific Grove, particularly as they haul out on the rocks in many places along the shore in PG.

One of the best ways to see marine wildlife in situ is to take a trip to Elkhorn Slough--a few miles north of Monterey--either in kayaks (if you think your kids can handle it) or on a pontoon boat "safari". I think it would be a great trip for 3 boys. http://www.elkhornslough.com/
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May 22nd, 2010, 10:35 AM
  #20  
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Oops, particularly as sea lions haul out in PG--sea otters do not, of course. Best time to see sea otters from shore is usually early morning when they are looking for food on the Bay floor near the shore.
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