California Weekend Getaway: Monterey Bay Aquarium

montery_1 No weekend trip to Monterey is complete without hopping into the Monterey Bay Aquarium. This beautiful aquarium sits in an old sardine cannery on Monterey’s famous Cannery Row, the water front street made famous by author John Steinbeck in his book of the same name. The canneries all closed up in the 40’s when the fish swam away, but  today it has become a popular stop of tourists to enjoy seafood, shopping, and visiting its famous aquarium.

Tip:  If you arrive at the Aquarium and find an hour-long line, use your smart phone to buy your ticket from the website.No need to wait in line once you have your ticket. They can scan the ticket right off your phone at the entrance. Montery_2 Sunday was our last day in Monterey. We  checked out of the hotel, put our bags in the car, and decide to walk the mile along the waterfront to get to the Aquarium. It was the perfect sunny California day for snapping photos, and  a  few selfies along the waterfront of Monterey Bay.  Blue sky, warm sun,  and people actually walking around in sandals right in the middle of winter! This made all three of us miss the easy life in California. Can someone want to remind me why I moved away?     Montery_4   Lunch time on Sunday was bit crowded on Cannery Row. The solution, grab and go seafood lunch.  We saw these little express seafood stands the day before on Fisherman’s Wharf, and here they were again near the aquarium. Easy to find seating along he waterfront made this a quick and easy choice. fish_2 After lunch it was time for our visit to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. We found the aquarium to be a very busy place with people in every direction we looked. This made it a little hard to read any of the information  provided about the sea creatures, but the displays were amazing and offered plenty to keep us engaged.  The Jellies Experience, and the Giant Pacific Octopus are the stars of the show here. It was amazingly exciting to see this beautiful octopus taking an afternoon swim across its tank.   jellyfish_4 Make sure to bring your camera if you are going to visit The Jellies Experience. What makes this experience so special is the beautiful lights that the aquarium has used to illuminate  these creatures as they effortlessly float along. I think it must be impossible not to take a great photo here.  The jellies are amazingly beautiful against the rich color backgrounds. jellyfish_5 jellyfish_3 jellyfish_1   After  the afternoon with jellyfish, octopuses, and sharks, we took a ride south to Carmel by the Sea. GB and I love visiting this beach when we lived in the bay area. This really was a  perfect day with a perfect end.  Sitting on the beach watching SB run at the edge of the waves before  our drive back up towards San Francisco. Can life be any better? 20140217_010431395_iOS

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