Carmel-by-the-Sea and its accompanying coastline appear to be pulled directly from the pages of a storybook. Complete with historic architecture, charming Tudor homes, and rolling green hills, residents reap the luxurious natural benefits of the Northern California coast all year long. This tight-knit community also has access to everything from fine dining to stunning outdoor experiences.
Carmel-by-the-Sea is a popular tourist destination thanks to enduring coastal views and vintage California charm. Tourism is central to the local economy, and the town is consistently popular for its hotels, vacation rentals, and quaint bed and breakfasts. It’s a perfect location to do a lot or do nothing at all. Carmel Beach is a satisfying place to sit with a good book—but there are also pristine surf spots, storied museums, fine dining, and legendary golfing.
Carmel-by-the-Sea’s historic Ocean Avenue takes you right through the heart of the town and ends at the ocean. Be sure to stop into the local restaurants, boutiques, and art galleries on your way through town. If you decide to walk through Carmel’s residential neighborhoods, prepare to be transported to the French countryside. You’ll be in awe of the fairy-tale cottages and lush plant life.
A picture-perfect setting
Whether you’re a permanent resident or you’re just passing through, you’ll undoubtedly fall in love with Carmel's ocean views. Carmel Beach features rocky cliffs, rugged greenery, and pristine blue water. The perfect place to experience the panoramic views is Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park. Named after a pioneer woman in the Big Sur country, one of the most famous sites at this California state park is the breathtaking McWay Falls trail. This trail leads to an 80-foot waterfall tumbling down from stunning granite cliffs into the ocean below.
The beach in your backyard
One of the many perks of living in Carmel-by-the-Sea is the close access to nature. Whether you enjoy hiking, picnicking, or birdwatching, there is something for everyone here.
One of the best ways to get outside in this coastal town is to spend the day at Carmel River State Beach. Spread over nearly 300 acres, this state park includes a mile-long protected beach with a lagoon formed by the Carmel River. The park is a popular spot to bird-watch, so be sure to keep your eye out for a Great Blue Heron, Greater Yellowlegs, or Brown Pelican.
Point Lobos Natural Reserve is another spot that you won’t want to miss. The reserve is considered the crown jewel of California’s 280 state parks. There, you can take in the spectacular coastal views, explore one of the many hiking trails, and bring along a pair of binoculars to spot local wildlife.
If you’re looking for a luxury culinary experience, book a table at Casanova. Located in downtown Carmel-by-the-Sea, this European-inspired restaurant offers French and Italian fare. Their menu features an assortment of staples, including pasta and steak au poivre. Additionally, their wine list boasts a variety of local and global pairings.
Another town favorite is Forge in the Forest. This cozy eatery has been a part of Carmel since 1944. Their mission has always been to craft inspiring and creative dishes, all of which are made using the freshest, high-quality ingredients. Their menu features sandwiches, entrées, and pasta. You can enjoy your meal indoors or on their dreamy patio with lush hanging plants and cozy fire pits.
Carmel offers a variety of shopping experiences, including outdoor malls and family-owned boutiques. You can spend the day exploring some of the city’s many shops, most of which are located in stone-paved alleyways or Tudor-style shops.
If you want to spruce up your home, stop by Yves Delorme Paris. This prestigious store is home to a French brand of luxury home linens. From bath towels to bedsheets, Yves Delorme prides itself on excellence. You can give your closet a makeover by shopping at Sylvie Unique Boutique, which offers a wide assortment of clothing and accessories. Their high-quality fabrics are sourced from Italy, Denmark, and Croatia. The clothing and small jewelry come from small design houses throughout Europe, Israel, and the United States. Each piece is timeless and distinctive.
A great place to call home
Carmel-by-the-Sea is a popular choice for vacation homes, but it’s also adored by its full-time residents.
One benefit of living in Carmel-by-the-Sea is the amazing school district. Carmel-by-the-Sea is served by the Carmel Unified School District, which has received an overall Niche grade of A+. The district has approximately 2,500 students in grades K-12 with a studio-teacher ratio of 17-to-1. The city is also home to a variety of private schools, giving parents and students plenty of options.
As a luxury resort town, Carmel-by-the-Sea is known for its array of cultural events and festivals that take place throughout the year. The Carmel Art Festival, which takes place in May, is one of the most widely attended events in town. Taking place downtown, more than 100 paintings are displayed for public viewing at this festival, followed by a silent auction. If you’re a classic car enthusiast, then be sure to check out the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. This event occurs in August and is part of the prestigious Monterey Car Week.
Stunning real estate
Carmel-by-the-Sea has a temperate climate, a close-knit community, and a perfect coastal lifestyle for families. It’s these reasons (and many others) that make investing in Carmel real estate a wise idea. Contact Carmel Coast Realty today if you’d like to find out more about Carmel-by-the-Sea homes for sale!