Outbound Collective logo
  • United States
  • California
  • Carmel By The Sea
  • Carmel-by-the-Sea, California

    Carmel-by-the-Sea, California, is a great spot for outdoor activities and attractions. From the scenic Point Lobos State Natural Reserve to the diverse hiking trails of the Garland Ranch Regional Park, there are plenty of adventures to be had. Point Lobos is a must-visit for its stunning coastal views, while the trails of Garland Ranch offer a variety of terrain for hikers of all levels. Visitors can also explore the 17-Mile Drive, a scenic drive along the Monterey Peninsula, and the Monterey Bay Aquarium, one of the top aquariums in the world. With so many top attractions, Carmel-by-the-Sea is the perfect destination.

    Top Spots in and near Carmel-by-the-Sea

    • Moss Landing, California

      Kayak with Humpback Whales in Monterey Bay

      5.0
      Disclaimer: Please keep a respectful distance from the whales and other sea wildlife for their protection and your own. Note, changing the animal's natural behavior is a violation of federal law.Every year, humpbacks whale migrate north from their winter and breeding grounds down in southern Mex...
      Read more
    • Moss Landing, California

      Whale Watching off Moss Landing

      The Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary is home to some of the most diverse and rich waters in our oceans, and you have the chance to see it up close and personal! The big prize is getting to see a whale, but these waters are teeming with other wildlife from dolphins to otters to sea lions.  F...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Camp at Andrew Molera State Park

      4.5
      1 mi
      Andrew Molera is about 27 miles south of Carmel and one of the first State Parks you'll hit heading down the coast. There will be signs for the Park as you approach and the main parking lot is only a couple hundred yards from Hwy 1. There are a number of hiking trails and activities to do around ...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Hike the Creamery Meadow Trail to Molera Beach

      2 mi
      Entrance to the parking lot is $10 per car, and once you get in be sure to use the restroom before you head for the trail, since you will likely spend a good amount of time out there.Look for the sign that says Creamery Meadow Trail. You'll know it's right when the very first thing you'll need to...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Hike the Andrew Molera State Park Loop

      4.5
      8.8 mi / 1100 ft gain
      The loops starts at the Andrew Molera State Park parking lot (4.5 miles north of the entrance to Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park along Highway 1). Begin by crossing the Big Sur River using the seasonal bridge. If the bridge has been removed, you will need to cross the water by foot. Usually the water...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Hike the East Molera Trail

      3.2 mi / 1390 ft gain
      Housed in Andrew Molera State Park, the East Molera Trail is easily accessible from Highway 1 with parking and restrooms available to hikers. A $10.00 entry fee is required but also provides entrance to Pfieffer Big Sur State Park just a few miles down the road.The trail head is located east of t...
      Read more
    • Moss Landing, California

      Kayak in Elkhorn Slough

      4.7
      Elkhorn Slough is located in Moss Landing, which is in the dead center of Monterey Bay, California. Elkhorn Slough is one of California's largest wetlands and part of a National Estuarine Reserve located in central Monterey Bay, California, just a short trip from the Monterey Peninsula and the Sa...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Camp at Ventana Campground, Big Sur

      4.6
      This campground is a gem when it comes to Big Sur camping, book here. Each site includes a parking spot, a campfire ring with grill, a picnic table, and plenty of space for 1-2 tents. There are multiple immaculate restroom facilities with showers, clean trash enclosures (emptied and sanitized dai...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Hike to Pfeiffer Falls

      4.0
      2 mi
      This trail is a staff favorite at Big Sur. This family-friendly waterfall trail provides only a moderate challenge for young children and older family members. There are two starting points for this hike depending on where you stashed the car. If you’re parked near the gift shop, the head up the ...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Camp at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park

      5.0
      The campground at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park offers a spectacular variety of natural settings to enjoy. Each of the 189 tent and RV sites is located within the redwood groves, oak woodlands, grassy meadows and they even have riverside camping.Each site has a picnic table, fire ring, access to dr...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Sykes Hot Springs via Pine Ridge Trail

      4.2
      18.96 mi / 7339 ft gain
      The trek to Sykes Hot Springs is about 10-miles one way along the Pine Ridge Trail. This is a great backpacking trip, but can be done as an out-and-back hike from the campgrounds at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park if you're really moving. The trail is moderately challenging, you'll cross the river t...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Pine Ridge, North Coast Ridge Loop

      2.0
      33.45 mi / 11388 ft gain
      If you are looking to do some backpacking in the Big Sur area, you've come to the right place. This post shares a suggested 4-day backpacking loop in the Ventana Wilderness that will offer a bit of everything - challenging hiking with a healthy does of elevation, beautiful primitive camping amon...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Pfeiffer Beach

      4.0
      0.81 mi / 75 ft gain
      Pfeiffer Beach located in Big Sur may truly be one of the most awesome beaches in California...if you can find it. I lived within 40 miles of this beach for over 20 years and just discovered it recently. This beach is located on an unmarked road called Sycamore Canyon Road. On Highway 1, this roa...
      Read more
    • Big Sur, California

      Big Sur River Gorge

      4.7
      0.36 mi / 56 ft gain
      If you are in the Big Sur area during the summer, exploring the Big Sur River Gorge is a must! The gorge is located in Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, and your closest parking will be day use parking lot 3. The trailhead to the gorge can be found at the northeast end of Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park C...
      Read more
    • Santa Cruz, California

      Surf Pleasure Point

      4.0
      Pleasure Point is located on the east side of Santa Cruz, California. It is a right hand point break that breaks year round. It is a popular surf spot for many people that live in the San Francisco Bay Area.  There are 3 different peaks that break at Pleasure Point. Sewers, which is the furthest ...
      Read more
    • Santa Cruz, California

      Beach Day at Lighthouse Field State Beach

      4.0
      This beach is less crowded compared to other beaches in Santa Cruz.  I got there early on a Saturday and found easy street parking.  There was plenty of space to spread out on the soft sand.  Later in the day I saw dolphins several times!  This is close to the Santa Cruz Surfing Museum.  It’s als...
      Read more