17 Mile Drive
The Pebble Beach Area is part of the 17 mile drive.
the 17 mile drive is one of the most wonderful attractions in Monterey County. This is a private enclave straddling the Pacific Grove, Pebble Beach, Monterey and Carmel Towns and is where the world famous pebble beach golf course, home of the US Open, is located. It also has the less expensive Spy Glass Hill Golf Course plus other assorted areas of Interest like the rocky outcroppings along the drive in the beaches, the famous lone cypress, the Spanish Bay and more. The 17 mile drive provides vistas of golf courses including Spyglass Hill, Cypress Point and Pebble Beach. After reaching Carmel Way, and the exit to Carmel, the 17-Mile Drive then heads northeast to the Highway 68/Highway 1 interchange, where one can exit, or continue to loop along the higher vistas of 17-Mile Drive, some of which offer views from more than 600 feet above sea-level. The full loop will take you back to the Pacific Grove Gate at Sunset Drive, roughly a distance of 17 miles hence the name.
The 17-Mile Drive is a 17 miles (27 km) long scenic loop having five entrances, including one at California State Route 1 and one at Pacific Grove off Sunset Drive and you have to pay an entrance fee of $ 9.50 per person to enter it (will be free if you dine at any restaurants inside the pebble beach and have them validate your admission ticket and the guardhouse will refund the price upon exit).
- Luxury Travel
Pebble Beach, - A golfer's Mecca
Pebble Beach is on the ocean between Monterey and Carmel-by-the-Sea, once presided over by Clint Eastwood as Carmel's major. This golf course is widely sough out by golf enthusiasts, with many major golf tournaments held there. Pebble Beach is as close to Carmel as the length of the golfcourse. Monterey is just a couple of miles up the road on the north side. There are of course several hotels in Carmel proper, and a number of hotels in Monterey. About 30 miles east of Pebble Beach is the good size farming town of Salinas with a number of additional hotels.
There are many sights to be seen in the area, if you are so inclined. Check out places like Monterey and Carmel of course, and then, Cannery Row, Monterey Bay Aquarium (a must see), 17 Mile Drive, and of course if you have time, take a drive down south on Hwy 1, through Big Sur, - and if you have a little more time, a t the southern end of Big Sur, is San Simeon with the Hearst Castle. If you cannot go that far, check out the virtual tour on the website asn see what you are missing.....d;o)
There are a number of other things to see and do, but this will give you a good start.
Review and research the sites above. I used to do five star tours through this area, so I am fairly familiar with it.
There is a delightful market right next to the clubhouse where you can purchase a picnic lunch, and then ride down the Big Sur coast, and stop at any of the many great spots along the way and have a picnic lunch.
The 18th hole of the golf course is a golfer's nemesis and is to be savored like fine wine.
17 mile drive.
the 17 mile drive is a road that runs along the coast theough the golf courses from monterey to carmel.
it's excellent for hiking or cycling and if you are spending time in either carmel or monterey then it makes a very good daytrip where you can explore some of californias finest coastline and some of the maost famous golf courses in the world.
- Road Trip
- Hiking and Walking
Fanshell Beach is another of the most popular stops in Pebble Beach with its own unique charms. This beach has a view of Bird Rock, and it offers several picnic tables on the sand for a nice lunch. Fanshell Beach is known for its annual migration of seals which haul up on the beach during pupping season. This often busy stop on 17 Mile Drive is between the much busier Bird Rock and the tip of Cypress Point. Fanshell Beach is almost completely surrounded by Cypress Point Golf Course and its beautiful ocean-front houses.
The beach is closed each year in April and May to protect the sensitive seal habitat.
Pescadero Point and the Ghost Trees
Pescadero Point and the Ghost Trees are located along 17 Mile Drive just over a half mile west of the Lodge at Pebble Beach. This area has a scenic overlook with views to the south and west, a natural area called the Pescadero Point Trust, and the Ghost Trees. Pescadero is Spanish for "fishing place," as this is supposedly a place where local Indians fished and harvested shells.
Sunsets at the Pescadero Point overlook, especially in the winter, are said to be spectacular. The Ghost Trees are the pale white, washed-out cypress common to this area. Pescadero Point Trust is a 1.6 acre site that was donated as open space...unfortunately it is fenced off and inaccessible except via a small trail at the parking area.
The Pescadero Point area is also home to The Lady in Lace of Pebble Beach, a ghost who frequents this area on foggy, dreary nights.
If you get bored, you can always golf...
The Pebble Beach community contains eight golf courses. Spyglass, Pebble Beach, and Spanish Bay are open to the public and owned by the Pebble Beach Company. Cypress Point, as well as the Monterey Peninsula Country Club's Dunes Course and Shore Course are private, while Poppy Hills and the Peter Hay 9-hole par 3 golf courses are also available for public use.
Pebble Beach Golf Links is the most expensive of the Pebble Beach Company's courses at $475 per round, followed by Spyglass ($315) then Spanish Bay ($250). Cypress Point's greens fees are $165 and Monterey Peninsula CC's courses are $97, but you must be a club member. Poppy Hills is (only!) $195 for the general public, and the Peter Hay course is just $20 for unlimited play...the best golf deal in town!
A cheaper alternative to the Pebble Beach courses is the Pacific Grove Golf Course; it's just a few miles away, has great views of the ocean and bay, and greens fees are just $20 to $55.
Bird Rock off Pebble Beach is home to three kinds of cormorants and a bunch of those wacky California sea lions. The cormorants nest here as they do on the end of the Coast Guard Wharf in Monterey.
The blue-throated Brandt's cormorants are one of the cormorant breeds that come to Bird rock in the spring to nest. These cormorants live along the west coast from Alaska to southern California with the greatest concentrations around Vancouver, San Francisco, and Monterey. These birds feed by swimming under water to depths of 40 feet to catch small fish. It is said the sea gulls are a major threat to rob the nests, so the birds nest in pairs with one always watching the next.
Bird Rock is also the nickname of the Spyglass Par-3 hole near the rock of the same name.
Bird Rock is hiking distance from Asilomar Beach in Pacific Grove, or you can pay the $9 and cruise along 17 Mile Drive. This is easily one of the busiest spots of the drive, up there with the Lone Cypress and the Pebble Beach Lodge.
The Lodge and Golf Links at Pebble Beach
The Lodge at Pebble Beach is one of America's finest resorts, earning numerous accolades over the years, including Condé Nast Traveler's #4 resort in the US and the International Association of Golf Tour Operators' Resort of the Year for North America in 2006. They have a variety of shops selling everything from antique golf souvenirs and jewelry to kids' clothes and a small grocery store. Restaurants at the Lodge include the Tap Room, Club XIX, Stillwater Bar and Grill, The Terrace Lounge and more. Rooms at the Lodge start at $645 and go as high as $2,000 per night.
The Pebble Beach Golf Links is recognized as one of the world's greatest golf courses. Established in 1919, it is one of the three courses used for the annual AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, and it occasionally hosts the U.S. Open Championships. Greens fees at the Golf Links are among the most expensive in the world at $475 per round plus cart rental, but many avid golfers would say it's worth every penny. Me? I prefer to watch.
Moss Beach at Spanish Bay
Moss Beach is the Pebble Beach community's largest and most popular beach. Not too many tourists stop in here since you have to pay to get into Pebble Beach ($9 per car). You can walk from the free parking areas at Asilomar to Moss Beach via the boardwalk...it's about 1 mile.
Just north of Moss Beach is North Moss Beach...creative! The two beaches together form Spanish Bay, also the name of the nearby resort and gold course. Spanish Bay is one of the locations Spaniard Juan Portola explored in 1769 when searching for Monterey Bay to establish the Spanish mission and presidio.
There's plenty of parking, about a dozen picnic tables, and great views of the surrounding golf courses, Point Joe, and Asilomar Beach.
17 Mile Drive
I finally got around to seeing 17 Mile Drive. It took an invitation to a friend's house in Pebble Beach so I could enter for free. Since we were on the guest list, the gate guard punched our names in the computer to verify, and he waved us through. We entered through the Pacific Grove Gate and did the coastal route twice. The first time we stopped at the Restless Sea, Point Joe, Bird Rock, and the Lone Cypress, then had lunch at the Tap Room in the Pebble Beach Lodge ($15 hamburgers!). We then cut back through some of the residential areas, past the Robert Louis Stevenson School, and Poppy Hills Golf Course, then stopped at the house for a few hours. When we left, we repeated the drive past Point Joe, Bird Rock, and the Lone Cypress, then exited via the Highway 1 gate. My favorite spot is the Restless Sea where waves come in from two different directions at 90 degree angles to each other. I also liked the view of the "Gingerbread House" which was built in 1944 by Pedro de Lemos and is now owned by the Del Monte Forest Foundation.
I really think 17 Mile Drive is very, very overrated for the price. Sure it is some beautiful scenery, but so are Ocean View Drive in Asilomar Beach, Scenic Drive in Carmel, and Highway 1 in Big Sur. Like to walk? You can walk into Pebble Beach from Asilomar Beach to the north for free, and see all of the same sights. You can also walk in from the south along Carmel Beach. Perhaps the only thing that would be difficult to see by walking is the Lone Cypress (which is supported by steel cables and rock walls). Even better...take a walk in Point Lobos for some far better scenery. The worst thing about 17-Mile Drive? Over at least half the drive, houses block the view of the Ocean, so you might as well be driving through the woods for your $9.
The Inn at Spanish Bay
The Inn at Spanish Bay is the newer of the three main resort areas at Pebble Beach. A self-enclosed facility, it has all you need for your leisurely vacation including restaurants, bars, shops, fitness and recreation, and probably help finding anything else you need. One of their signature elements is the bagpiper who plays each evening at sunset at the outdoor Lobby Lounge.
The two main restaurants are Peppoli's and Roy's. Peppoli's is the fancier of the two restaurants and serves Tuscan cuisine, while Roy's has excellent Hawaiian fusion foods, mostly seafood and fine wine. This resort also has three bars: Sticks which is kind of a sports bar with billiards, Traps for a little more classy experience, and my favorite is the Lobby Lounge with indoor and outdoor, fireside tables overlooking the ocean. The bars serve food from their limited bar menus.
The inn was constructed in 1987, has 269 rooms, ranging from $500 to $2,395 per night. The cheapest rooms are supposedly around 600 square feet which is far, far bigger then my first apartment.
AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am
Bing Crosby created a tradition in 1947 at Pebble Beach that would live on through today. It is an annual tournament with PGA Professionals and Celebrity Amateur golfers with the earnings benefitting charities worldwide. The event normally takes place in early February, which is at the start of the golfing season for the PGA professionals, which makes this tournament well attended. The centerpeice of this tournament is Pebble Beach Golf Links, but also includes the other two courses in the Pebble family, Spyglass and Spanish Bay.
Overall, this is a worthwhile event to come and watch as well as alot of fun, since there are usually a few antics provided by the celebrities.
- Luxury Travel
- Spa and Resort
17 Mile Drive - Lone Cypress (#16)
Described by most as the pinnacle of the 17 mile drive, the Lone Cypress is a miracle of horticulture. Standing alone out of a rock formation dangling fearlessly into the Pacific Ocean, this tree has stood the test of time. Human contact with the tree has been 250 years, although no one can predict how long the tree stood before this. The Cypress is the symbol of the Pebble Beach community, so it would be a shame not to see it!
- Historical Travel
- Road Trip
Restless Sea & Point Joe
The Restless Sea off the tip of Point Joe is my favorite stop along 17 Mile Drive. Here you have a unique sight...the waves come together at 90-degree angles, crashing into each other before reaching the shore. The pictures do not do it justice, but it's very interesting to watch. They say the odd wave action is caused by the sub-surface currents and the structure of the coast in this area.
It is recorded that early sailors frequently crashed on the rocks at Point Joe, in the fog and rain mistaking it for the entrance to Monterey Bay. That explains why they built Point Pinos Light just down the coast to mark the real entrance to the bay!
Walk or Jog to Pebble Beach from Asilomar
I finally got around to jogging in Pebble Beach. I parked at Asilomar Beach along Sunset Drive between the surfer beach and Fishwife restaurant. The trail cuts though some evergreen trees, then immediately becomes a narrow, but sturdy boardwalk on the dunes between the beach and the Links at Spanish Bay golf course. For about a mile you can continue on this boardwalk enjoying great views of the Pacific Ocean until it ends at a big parking area and picnic spot at Moss Beach along Spanish Bay. The trail continues as packed dirt along the water and next to the road in various sections, taking you past Point Joe and the Unsettled Sea (about 1.5 miles from Asilomar), China Rock (~2.25 miles), then Bird Rock (3 miles). This is as far as I have ventured on foot, but the trail definitely continues.
My goal is to have someone drop me off at Asilomar then pick me up at Carmel Beach an hour or so later (it's about 9 miles total if you stick to the eater).
By the way, walking into Pebble Beach is free! Driving costs $9.
- Book now for big savings!
- Hotels.com Outstanding choice of hotels all over the world at fantastic prices.
- Official Site
- Travelocity Official Site