Attractions & Entertainment Travel

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

Written by Emily Buys

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

Traveling to the Monterey Bay and want to make sure you capture some great photos? I’ve got you covered. We recently made our beloved family trip to Carmel and Monterey, and decided to take the 2016 Mitsubishi Outlander for a test drive. What better way to enjoy the coast than in a brand new car, and a red one at that. This trip was all about capturing some of the best photo spots in Carmel and Monterey, and the Outlander helped us do just that.

2016 Mitsubishi Outlander

The Outlander is a 7-passenger vehicle, but for road tripping, I highly recommend you not fill the car with 7 people and your luggage. You will run out of room fast! If you don’t need to fill the car, then you will enjoy this nice stroll down Hwy 1. Before you head to each destination, you will want to punch the address or location into the car’s navigation system, as you can’t add it after you start your drive. I will give you my favorite stops in order from South to North. 

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

First up is Bixby Bridge. This is a beautiful bridge right on the coast. If you park just to the north of the bridge, in the scenic vista turnout, you will be able to capture some awesome photos. I highly recommend sunset. Bixby Bridge is 13 miles south of Carmel, in Big Sur, and began construction in 1931. 

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

As you drive the 13 miles from Bixby Bridge to Carmel, keep your eyes peeled for scenic vistas and turnouts, because Hwy 1 is filled with beauty. If you time your drive with the sun setting, even better. 

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

During the day, a stop at the beach in Carmel by the Sea, is a must. I have visited this beach many times, but this last visit we discovered this awesome tree. The kids had fun climbing it, and capturing photos with the ocean in the background is pure serenity. To get to the tree, drive West on Ocean Ave, and park somewhere near the beach. From the street, head north toward the beach volleyball courts. Just to the left will be the tree. This area of the beach is more quiet and secluded, and makes for a great picnic.

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

My other favorite tree in Carmel is found in Carmel Valley. If you have the time, I recommend the drive because, well, the tree looks like it’s running! This tree is found on the grounds of Holman Ranch, just up the road from the stables at 19 E Carmel Valley Rd, Carmel Valley, CA.

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

Next up is the famous 17-mile drive through Pebble Beach. There are numerous stops along the way, so please take your time and check out the map the park ranger gives you, and take plenty of photos along the way. If you’re lucky, as you come up to the second golf course on the drive, there may be several deer grazing between the sand traps and the beach. They’re so close and quite a treat to see!

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

After your drive through Pebble Beach, you’re pretty close to Pacific Grove. Stop in for a photo of the bay, before you head into Monterey. Look for Ocean View Blvd to drive right along the bay.

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

If you decide to check out the Monterey Bay Aquarium and everything there is to do on Cannery Row (I recommend it), then there will be a couple more photo-worthy spots when you’re through. Just east of the many attractions on Cannery Row is Coast Guard Pier. Park and take a walk to the end of the pier – or as far as you can get. Take your time, and peek over the rails to spot numerous harbor seals, star fish, and whatever else you can find. The end of the pier is blocked off because it is covered in seals, so have fun!

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

By the time you are done watching the seals, it just might be getting dark again. As you start to walk back up the pier, look up and to the west. There’s your photo! I love this view and photograph it every time I visit.

Best Photo Spots in Carmel and Monterey

If you’re looking to rent or buy a car before you head to the coast, take the Mitsubishi Outlander for a test drive and see if it’s for you. It’s got the latest technology, making this car super smart! Let’s see if you can handle it!!

I’d love to see some of your favorite photo spots in Carmel and Monterey! Tag #cleverhousewife on Instagram, with your shots!

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Emily Buys

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