Morning in Monterey, California: Stunning Sunrise, Steinbeck Monument, and Cannery Row
After spending less than twenty four glorious hours in San Francisco, we had arrived in Monterey in time for a late dinner the night before. While we only had one night to spend here, we thoroughly enjoyed this little beach town.
When your three year old is still on east coast time, he gets up at 5:15 am in Monterey, California. Sneaking out so as not to wake the rest of the family, we walked out into the brisk cool morning, crossed the street from our hotel onto a very nice jogging and bike walkway, and were greeted with this stunningsunrise! This is quite a sunrise for my very first west coast sunrise! WOW!
After enjoying the sunrise, my little guy and I made our way down to Cannery Row. It was early so most of the shops weren’t open yet, but it was peaceful taking an early morning stroll.
I didn’t know much about the history of Monterey prior to my visit. During WW1 Monterey became the home of a booming fish canning industry primarily canning sardines.
“Cannery Row’s wartime production grew from 75,000 cases in 1915 to 1.4 million in 1918”(click text for source)
Another claim to fame for Monterey and specifically Cannery Row came when the famous twentieth century author, John Steinbeck, wrote a fiction novel named after the street.
Cannery Row follows the adventures of Mack and the boys, a group of unemployed yet resourceful men who inhabit a converted fishmeal shack on the edge of a vacant lot down on the Row.
Mack and the boys want to do something nice for Doc, the gentle and intellectual proprietor of a biological supply house, a fatherly and kind figure to all. They make elaborate plans to give Doc a party, but the plans go awry, and Mack and the boys must seek a way to make things right.
The book weaves in poignant tales of other colorful denizens of the Row and paints an unforgettable portrait of the once vital canning district on the brink of its disappearance.
This monument in the center of Steinbeck Plaza pays tribute not only to Steinbeck, but to several other members of Monterey’s history, including, a Chinese fisherman and other local entrepreneurs. Read more about the history of Monterey here and the statue here.
Very unfortunate there wasn’t time for visiting any of the tasting rooms, but it is a road trip and we have a long drive today. Too bad!
There were so many amazing views and beautiful scenes to capture. After the rest of the family woke up and joined us, we toured on foot the rest of cannery row and spent several minutes viewing sea lions and seals before heading back to our hotel and down the road to our next exciting coastal vista!
Despite numerous recommendations to go to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, we unfortunately had a long drive ahead of us and our schedule did not allow for it. Instead, we spent the morning walking around the town taking in the sights and snapping some beautiful photos.
Though we only had a few hours in this quaint seaside village town, we made the most of our morning. The crisp spring air accompanied by the beautiful sunrises, the playful sea lions, and the sounds of the ocean splashing on the rocks made it perfectly clear why John Steinbeck would choose such a location as a back drop for a novel. It was just like a scene from a book!