Things to Do and Places to See: Northern California, Part 2

Here’s Part 2 of the Northern California 3-Day weekend getaway:

Day 2 – Monterey

Went on a search for Sea Otters in the wild.  Drove past the Haute Enchilada Café & Galerias in Moss Landing.  The place was mentioned in an L.A. Times article about Salinas and it looked really interesting, but didn’t get a chance to stop in for a meal on this trip (Cost: free!).

Visited some of the real-life sites written about in Cannery Row by John Steinbeck, including “Western Biological Laboratories”, “Lee Chong’s Grocery”, and “The Bear Flag Restaurant” (Cost: free!).

Visited the Monterey Bay Aquarium (Cost: $34.95 per adult; $21.95 per child, ages 3-12).  Ate a mid-day snack at the café in the aquarium and enjoyed a beautiful view of the bay (the tomato basil soup and grilled cheese was yummy).

Walked around Fisherman’s Wharf and ate dinner at the Old Fisherman’s Grotto.  Reservations were not required and it was about a 15-20 minute wait on a Saturday at dinner time (note: this restaurant has a “Children’s Policy”, so it’s not really a place for small children).  Ate the “Monterey Style” Clam Chowder (which was delicious) and the Petrale Sole and Stuffed Grilled Prawns as main entrees.  For dessert, we had the Crème Brulee w/fresh berries.  Everything was excellent!

Day 3 – Salinas and going home

Visited the National Steinbeck Center in Salinas (Cost: $14.95 per adult; $5.95 per child, ages 6-12).

Stopped in Paso Robles for lunch at the Red Scooter Deli (the sandwiches are yummy and big enough to share).  Also went to Powell’s Sweet Shoppe, which has a great variety of current and old-timey candies, like Squirrel Nut Zippers and Abba Zabba.  The store also shows Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory on a continuous loop.

The last stop of the trip was in Solvang.  Purchased a 1lb. bucket of assorted butter cookies from the Danish Mill Bakery and ate some Æbleskivers at the Solvang Restaurant before heading home (both places are located on Copenhagen Drive).


Even though the trip was short, it was chock-full of fun places to see and a great time was had by all.

– Jillian