One day we set out to explore Carmel By The Sea's surrounding countryside We had long wanted to visit Point Lobos State Reserve with its stunningly beautiful wild coastline, its majestic forest and miles of well maintained hiking trails. At one place we found John, a docent who has been offering his wit and local knowledge to people like us for ten years. We did con John into giving us a Cypress Grove Trail brochure which also relates how the Allan Memorial Grove came about to preserve the unique Monterey Cypress trees. The Cypress Grove Trail is a loop trail that winds through coastal scrub and woods to cliffs and ocean views.
Actually Point Lobos has an interesting past being in the early days a whaling station, an abalone cannery, a granite quarry and shipping point for coal. Later A.M. Allan started acquiring land recognizing the value of the cypress grove. In 1933 Allan's heirs donated fifteen acres in Allan's memory and later sold much of the present Preserve to the California State Park system.
Our stay at Carmel By The Sea was blessed with a remarkable of number of cloudless, windless sunshine filled days which were perfect for the many scenes that demanded a photograph.
We also had to visit and photograph Mission San Carlos Bopromeo del Rio Carmelo. Here the graceful Basilica Church, the center of the Carmel Mission, is registered as a National historic Landmark.
Carmel By The Sea has a long stretch of beautiful white sand beach, the white color due to the underlying rock that the sea slowly grinds to sand. The beach is very popular and in easy walking distance from almost anyplace in the business end of town. Also there is a scenic road along the coastline from Ocean avenue to Carmel River State Beach.