- The list below includes 144 free or cheap things to do in or near Monterey, California, including 77 different types of inexpensive activities like Walking Trails, Piers & Boardwalks, Art Museum and History Museums.
- From Waterfront to Monterey Bay, there are a variety of budget-friendly attractions in Monterey and in nearby cities within 25 miles like Carmel, Pacific Grove, Salinas and Seaside.
Along with breathtaking views, the Waterfront provides a great place to take nature walks or enjoy watching sea creatures such as seals and whales. With access to the beach, you can also get you feet wet or catch a bite at an oceanfront restaurant.
Monterey Bay is a great place to feel close to nature. Its beautiful sandy beaches, clean waters and regular sightings of marine life in their natural habitat, make the Bay a popular tourist attraction. There are also many seafood restaurants and local shops nearby.
Enjoy a relaxing drive along picturesque 17-Mile Drive. A popular route along the Pacific Coastline, it passes many tourist destinations including Lone Cypress and Spanish Bay. On 17-Mile Drive there are also a number of restaurants, beaches and other scenic points where one can stop and take in the view.
Coast Guard Pier offers some stunning views of the ocean and a close glimpse of marine life such as sea lions, gulls and otters. It has a beautiful sandy beach with picnic tables and a small restaurant. On weekends, one can also watch scuba divers performing their drills.