Just a quick drive from the Bay Area, Carmel-by-the-Sea is a world-famous artist’s enclave. Home to celebrities, aging hippies, and some of the most breath-taking views along the Pacific, this charming and romantic village makes for the perfect weekend getaway.

Carmel Walks
(831) 642-2700

Take a two-hour guided walk through Carmel’s charming hidden alleys and courtyards. Walkers are charged $25 for the tour, but four-legged friends are free. Like many businesses in Carmel, dogs are welcomed with open arms.

Dametra Café
SE corner of Ocean & Lincoln
Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA 93921
(831) 622-7766

This family-owned Mediterranean restaurant offers delicious and exotic food in a warm and cozy atmosphere. Try the fried cheese, but stand back! This cheese lit on fire… tableside. Known for a lively staff, servers and patrons alike occasionally break into song and dance.

Steven Whyte Gallery
Delores Street between 5th and 6th
Carmel, CA 93921
(831) 620-1917

Originally from the United Kingdom, Steven Whyte is a sculptor with BIG ideas. His sculptures are on public display all of the world, and you can’t miss them. His busts of famous faces are huge. Stop by his gallery and see what he’s working on, or pick out a smaller piece to add to your collection.

Diggidy Dog Boutique
Ocean and Mission Avenues
(831) 625-1585

Diggidy Dog is heaven for puppies and their owners. This virtual palace of doggie treats, supplies, and toys has everything you can think of getting your pooch. And hundreds of items you probably never knew existed. Chewing bones of all sizes, home-baked treats, beds, leashes, collars…even complete dog costumes and outfits are available.

Forest Theatre
(831) 626-1681

For an unforgettable experience, bring your own food and drinks into this 100 year old theater, where you can sit under the stars and check out some local musical theater. The Forest Theater’s season runs from Memorial Day to mid-October, and is definitely worth a visit.

5th Ave and Mission
Carmel, CA 93921
(831) 625-0501

Casanova is known as “the most romantic restaurant in Carmel.” And that’s saying something, as this town is packed with nooks just perfect for a romantic rendezvous. Run by a Belgian couple, this intimate space serves locally-sourced French and Italian fare to couples from all over the world.
Thuy’s favorite: The Gnocchi Casanova

Cottage of Sweets
Ocean between Lincoln and Monte Verde
Carmel, CA 93921
(831) 624-5170

Run as a traditional British sweet shop, the Cottage of Sweets is just that: a cottage. Shelves are packed with candies from all over the world. A perfect stop for anyone with a sweet tooth, the Cottage of Sweets has a little taste of a lot of candy.

Cypress Inn
Lincoln & 7th Street
Carmel, CA 93921
(831) 624-3871

Owned by the one and only Doris Day, the Cypress Inn is a gorgeous, upscale bed and breakfast. Few hotels are as dog-friendly as the Cypress Inn, which boasts it’s own four-legged director of “Pet Relations.” Snuggle in to a standard king room, or indulge in a deluxe suite with a balcony over-looking the Pacific. Many locals swing by Terry’s Bar, for a lively drink.

Mission Ranch Hotel
26270 Dolores Street
Carmel, CA 93923

Another celebrity-owned hotel, Mission Ranch is owned by none other than former Carmel mayor, Clint Eastwood. The Inn boasts 31 hotel rooms located within ten buildings on the property. While dining at the restaurant, known for its American Cuisine and Piano Bar, unwind and watch the sheep graze in the meadow. Located just 9 blocks south of downtown Carmel and 8 blocks from Carmel Beach, the views and quiet location make the Ranch a special place for romantic getaways, or even family vacations.

Roy’s Pebble Beach
2700 17 Mile Drive
Pebble Beach, CA 93959
(831) 647-7423

The perfect time to grab a drink at Roy’s is around 5:45 every evening, when bagpipe players stand along the famous golf-course and perform as guests kick back. It’s all about big flavors at Roy’s at Pebble Beach. The Hawaiian-fusion theme places fresh seafood front and center. Sushi, sashimi and blackened rare ahi tuna are prepared to perfection.

Andre’s Bouchee
Mission Street between Ocean and 7th
Carmel, CA 93921
831 626-7880

This Carmel favorite lures locals and visitors with its chic style and neighborhood charm. Chef Andre Lemaire prepares authentic French Bistro Cuisine with a Californian Coastal flair in this airy Parisian bistro.

The Cheese Shop
Junipero Street
Carmel, CA 93921
(831) 625-2272

Fans of cheese, you would be nuts to miss one of the world’s great independent cheese shops. Packed with cheeses from all over the world, selecting your cheese can be a little daunting. But the Cheese Shop’s young staff is so friendly and fun, just popping into the shop is a treat. Wine, gourmet foods, gifts and books are also for sale. But don’t leave without the cheese.

Ready for your next adventure? Head over to Eye on the Bay’s Travel & Outdoors section and discover the best of the Bay.