Hey, you! Are you still there? Want to tell me how we’re halfway through September already?! It’s a bit of an odd time to be putting up a blog post, I know. But I’ve actually got a nice chunk of spare time this evening and we just enjoyed a lovely day in Monterey, CA, a couple of hours down the coast from where we live.
We got a late start this morning (around 10) after sleeping in and cleaning the apartment. Luckily, traffic was light and we got to Monterey around noon.
Monterey Bay Aquarium
First, we headed to the main attraction: the aquarium! Luckily, we bought our tickets online beforehand, because the line to buy tickets was long. We were happy to bypass it and walk right in.
Because day passes are pretty pricey ($50 per person!), we ate part of our lunch beforehand and walked through every exhibit! My favorite exhibit was actually one I didn’t get a good picture of: the huge “open sea” tank. It was enormous! Here’s a selection of pictures from the visit. It took us about two hours to see everything.
Asilomar State Beach
After the aquarium, we headed to the beach to finish our picnic lunch and relax. We wandered down by the water to take some pictures, but it was a little cold for swimming!
Then we relaxed in our car with the doors open to the sea breeze. I read aloud a couple of chapters from The Fellowship of the Ring (we’re reading the series together right now–Eric’s second time and my sixth). It was a lovely, do-nothing few hours 🙂
When we planned our trip a few weeks ago, I did quite a bit of research to find an allergy-friendly restaurant for us to have a nice dinner. Well, not to brag or anything… but I found a great place! The Montrio Bistro in downtown Monterey served us the best meal I’d had in a long time. (You’ll have to excuse my crappy pictures. The lighting was terrible, but the food was amazing!)
Oh, and also, the tables were covered in paper and the waiters left crayons at every table, whether there were kids or not. Hence the funny doodles in the pictures, and another reason to love this restaurant!
We started off with bacon-wrapped shrimp with onion and carrots pickle for our appetizer.
For our meal, Eric ordered roast chicken with green beans and fingerling potatoes, which got two thumbs-ups from him. I had my monthly “screw IBS” meal: crab cakes with a cream sauce and radish pickle, and an arugula salad with honey dressing and herb butter croutons. Not gluten-free, not lactose-free, and definitely worth it!
For dessert, Eric had a sundae with homemade ice cream and I ordered a “dessert bite.” It was the tiniest little carrot cake with bruleed cream cheese frosting, a spoonful of coconut ice cream, candied pecans and honey. Nom. You know that comfortably-full-of-the-best-food feeling? Yes, that’s how I felt after this meal.
And now we’re just relaxing in our airbnb for the night before heading home tomorrow morning. A wonderful ending to a much-needed getaway!
What are you up to this weekend? What’s the last mini-vacation or day trip you took?