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Monterey is a city in the U.S. state of California, on the southern edge of Monterey Bay on California's Central Coast. It stands at an elevation of 26ft above sea level, on a land area of 8.466sqmi. The 2010 census recorded a population of 27,810.Monterey was the capital of Alta California under both Spain and Mexico. It was the only port of entry for taxable goods in California. In 1846, the U.S. flag was raised over the Customs House, and California became part of the United States after the Mexican–American War.The city had California's first theater, public building, public library, publicly funded school, printing press, and newspaper. The city and surrounding area have attracted artists since the late 19th century and many celebrated painters and writers have lived there. Until the 1950s, there was an abundant fishery.Among Monterey's notable present-day attractions are the Monterey Bay Aquarium, Cannery Row, Fisherman's Wharf and the annual Monterey Jazz Festival.HistoryNative American periodLong before the arrival of Spanish explorers, the Rumsen Ohlone tribe, one of seven linguistically distinct Ohlone groups in California, inhabited the area now known as Monterey. They subsisted by hunting, fishing and gathering food on and around the biologically rich Monterey Peninsula. Researchers have found a number of shell middens in the area and, based on the archaeological evidence, concluded the Ohlone's primary marine food consisted at various times of mussels and abalone. A number of midden sites have been located along about of rocky coast on the Monterey Peninsula from the current site of Fishermans' Wharf in Monterey to Carmel.Take stress off the schedule by using our United States trip itinerary builder tool.
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Top Monterey tours
3-Hour Electric Bike Tour in Monterey Bay Coastal Rec Trail BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $79
Duration: 150 to 210 minutes
Carmel Small-Group Food and Wine Walking Tour BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $102
Duration: 3 hours
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Side trips from Monterey
Hidden gems in Monterey
Historic Sites in Monterey
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Places to visit with Monterey
San Francisco BEST FOR: Island, Bridge, Pier / Boardwalk Los Angeles BEST FOR: Theme Park, Specialty Museum, Historic Walking Area Yosemite National Park BEST FOR: World heritage site, Geologic Formation, Hiking Trail San Diego BEST FOR: Specialty Museum, Zoo, Beach Anaheim BEST FOR: Disney Park / Activity, Ride / Activity, Room Escape Game
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