With its location on the Monterey Peninsula, Carmel-by-the-Sea is close to several oceanside trails, although there's plenty to do within the village itself as well.
- Carmel River State Beach: Take in the ocean at this mile-long beach. It's a favorite launch spot for kayakers and divers, especially with the kelp forests around Monastery Beach.
- Point Lobos State Natural Reserve: Point Lobos State Natural Reserve offers stunning vistas of the California coast and its wildlife. Hikers can often spot sea lions, elephant seals and even migrating whales from the trail.
- Carmel Plaza: This downtown favorite is home to national brands and gourmet shops as well as specialty food stores.