Carmel-by-the-Sea Local Customs

  • Dogs play in the surf, Carmel
    Dogs play in the surf, Carmel
    by Rixie
  • Local Customs
    by Rixie
  • Banner reflects Carmel's dog-friendly attitude
    Banner reflects Carmel's dog-friendly...
    by Rixie

Most Recent Local Customs in Carmel-by-the-Sea

  • Rixie's Profile Photo

    Canine Friendly

    by Rixie Updated Nov 29, 2009

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    Banner reflects Carmel's dog-friendly attitude
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    Carmel is an extremely dog-friendly town. Almost everyone we passed was walking a dog; I felt kind of deprived because we didn't have one! One shop had dishes of water and dog treats outside the door for the benefit of its canine customers.

    We even saw what seemed to be a German Shepherd (Alsatian) club: I counted nine dogs in the group. Yo, Rinty!

    Do keep your dog leashed for his/her safety and that of others.

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    • Travel with Pets

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    No Numbers

    by Rixie Updated Nov 28, 2009

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    There are no house numbers in Carmel, which sometimes makes it difficult to find a place. Addresses are given as intersections, e.g. Ocean and Monteverde.

    On our latest trip to Carmel, we were driving a rental car with a GPS. I was stymied by the first step: Enter destination address. There's probably a way to enter an intersection into a GPS, but I didn't know how and had no manual, so I chose a house number at random.

    After we arrived in Carmel and were headed for our hotel, we found ourselves blocks away from the center of town, in a residential neighborhood.

    "Wait, this can't be right," I said. Then I remembered. The GPS lady was correct. She was taking us to the random house number I'd selected.

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  • TRimer's Profile Photo

    Read the Carmel Pine Cone

    by TRimer Written Aug 4, 2007

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    The Carmel Pine Cone is the local paper in Carmel. Of note, it the police blotter that logs all police incidents. As the town does not have any serious crime, the incidents tend to be quite interesting. It is updated every Friday. Here are a few from the August 3rd addition:

    Carmel-by-the-Sea: Case of destroying cemetery property at Rio and Lasuen. A female reported the cemetery in disarray and said she took three bones. An Ohlone tribe representative wished to file a complaint, and on follow-up the female was contacted and found to have returned the bones. A reburial was completed. Problem is reportedly common as the graves are not very deep.

    Carmel-by-the-Sea: Reporting party turned over a dog to the front desk at the police department, reported to be found on Camino del Monte. The owner was located and the dog returned.

    Carmel-by-the-Sea: Ambulance was dispatched to a Riata Road residence for a male with possible food poisoning. Ambulance arrived to find Pebble Beach Fire and the QRV on scene. The patient was found seated on the couch in care of the QRV medic, who stated the patient was going to sign a medical release form. The patient confirmed that he did not want to go to the hospital. Ambulance cleared and returned to quarters.

    Carmel Valley: Husband and wife were involved in a verbal argument

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  • TRimer's Profile Photo

    Quirky Traditions

    by TRimer Updated Aug 4, 2007

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    Local Shell Station

    Carmel’s odd approach to public amenities extends to no street numbers (Carmel's inns, restaurants, boutiques, and art galleries all identify their locations only by cross streets), no neon signs and only a few traffic lights and some oddly “Carmellian” diversions such as gas stations that look like British Inns. There is also no mail delivery to residents (they have to pick it up at the post office).

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  • cnango's Profile Photo

    A Pet Lovers Paradise !

    by cnango Updated Jan 1, 2006

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    A Lucky Pup on Carmel Beach !

    Carmel is a great place to go on vacation with Mans Best Friend. This dog friendly town has numerous places to pamper your pet.From a dogs only drinking fountain at Carmel Plaza, to dog friendly Carmel Beach and several shops that sell specialty doggy items.The most famous dog lover in Carmel is Movie Star Doris Day, who owns the Cypress Inn. Dogs are not only welcome at her charming Inn they're given the royal treatment including a dog biscuit turn down service. The web site below lists the many places in Carmel that cater to Dogs.

    Related to:
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  • atufft's Profile Photo

    No Postal Delivery in Carmel

    by atufft Written Oct 10, 2005

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    If you drive through the residential areas you'll notice that mailboxes are conspicuously absent. That's because there isn't postal delivery. This is a long standing tradition in this quaint town. Carmel residents must receive their mail by going to their box at the Post Office. UPS and FedEx do deliver to the door however.

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  • bugalugs's Profile Photo

    Strange.......but true!!!!!

    by bugalugs Updated Jun 21, 2003

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    I found this quite strange but apparently the residents of Carmel dont have house numbers or letter boxes and go to collect their post from the post office.

    Also in the centre of Carmel footpaths and street lamps are also a no no, in order to retain its village charm.

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  • druvincent2112's Profile Photo

    BE generous/ couteous and tip your servers well

    by druvincent2112 Updated Jan 30, 2003

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    Be polite...be couteous...dont freak out at the prices..if its too expensive, go somewhere else. Dont sit and whine to your waiter. Also remember EVERYONE wants a 7:30 saturday night reservation....be smart...be flexible...do you really want to dine with EVERYONE?? Go at a better time or a better night.restaurants are packed at this time and its impossible for establishments to provide excellent service all the time during a mad rush. and on Holidays!!?? What were you thinking??..be patient...look at the Big Picture...see how crowded a place is...and if they quote you a long wait..dont freak out!! its not their fault..its really yours for not planning better. if you have hypoglycemic issues or health concerns..travel smart..have some power bars or snacks in your car and hotel...dont be at the mercy of a packed house for a morsel of bread or a sip of water.
    many restaurants will have more than one person wait on you...usually a busser as well
    usually Mexican...dont bark orders to them..be respectful...also another person might deliver your food...this doesn't mean your server is slacking by any means...hot food needs to go out Now and good places will get other servers to help with this. Waiters are busy and its stressful..they may have 4,5,or 6 other tables or more!! all wanting things...see the big picture and oh yeah when your server is telling the specials???....dont make faces in disgust of something you may not like. If you are rude to these professionals they will shut down and turn into a robot waiter and you dont want that do you? By the way a$10 tip on a $90 check is not good. Be generous..money is like water it needs to flow..

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  • Pavlik_NL's Profile Photo

    Former place of beginning artists.

    by Pavlik_NL Written Oct 16, 2002

    Carmel itself used to be a hip place where forming artists lived. However, living here is now-a-days so expensive that maybe only the already settled artists can have a house here. Still, some expositions witness the old days and show new painters or sculpters.
    The off course still find wonderful places to get inspiration along the rocky shores. On the other hand the waters are cold and often full of weats. This is the domain of the sea-otter. A nice clever animal that opens shells with a stone while floating relaxed on the waves.

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  • neopetsfan's Profile Photo

    When visiting Carmel you have...

    by neopetsfan Written Sep 12, 2002

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    When visiting Carmel you have to visit some galleries. There are a lot of Galleries with great paintings one of my favourite is a painting of Thomas Kinkade you see on this picture. I have a lot of pictures of his paintings so I will change it every now and then.

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  • Krystynn's Profile Photo

    The first time we went there,...

    by Krystynn Written Sep 12, 2002

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    The first time we went there, we expected to see a sleepy seaside village. Instead, we discovered a very touristy shopping mecca with LOTS of very expensive art.

    Do check out the following:-

    Garcia Gallery. It is located on Ocean between San Carlos and Dolores.
    The Carmel Pine Cone is a FREE weekly publication that you can pick up just about anywhere in the Monterey/ Carmel area.

    Check this site out: Carmel Pine Cone
    Collect lots of brochures and short travel guides (via their flyers) from the Visitors' Center. This will certainly enable and help you to plan your day trips in a much better manner.


    Have fun!

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  • Krystynn's Profile Photo

    Some interesting things to...

    by Krystynn Written Sep 12, 2002

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    Some interesting things to note in case you decide to migrate to Carmel-by-the-Sea..... ;-))


    It sounds kinda strange but a permit is actually required to wear certain high heel shoes here!! I kid you not! I read somewhere (in one of the travel guidebooks) that since part of Carmel's charm is its urban forest, walking may be more difficult than elsewhere and an ordinance was thus created for liability reasons (though rarely enforced)! Hm....

    There is no mail delivery service here! IF you DO have mail, you'd go to the Post Office on 5th Avenue between Dolores and San Carlos Streets to pick it up. Really. And the post office is one interesting place to meet your new neighbors....

    Also, most streets in the residential areas have no formal curbs and gutters. Streets are rarely paved to their full width and often meander around trees and landscaped areas.

    Have a great holiday!

    Photo Below: This is the Carmel Visitor Center. You can collect ALL the brochures you want from this place.... ;-)))

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  • Lys-Noir's Profile Photo

    UNBELIEVABLE BUT TRUE :-)...

    by Lys-Noir Written Aug 26, 2002

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    UNBELIEVABLE BUT TRUE :-) !!

    1. Part of the quirkiness of this community is that there are no street addresses.
    Properties are identified by their cross streets and locations such as 'three houses
    down on Dolores.' In addition, cottages are given names such as 'Doll House.'

    2. There is no mail delivery. Mail is picked up at the Post Office on 5th Avenue between Dolores and San Carlos Streets. The post office is a place to meet neighbors.

    3. Among its more unusual ordinances is one requiring a permit to wear certain high heel shoes. Since part of Carmel's charm is its urban forest, walking may be more difficult than elsewhere and an ordinance was created for liability reasons though rarely enforced.

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  • bryaj03's Profile Photo

    Little known laws

    by bryaj03 Written Jun 1, 2008
    Tree in Middle of Street
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    It is against the law to wear high heeled shoes in Carmel. This isn't really enforced, but just one of the querks.

    It is against the law to cut down trees in Carmel.

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    • Architecture
    • Road Trip

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