Your trip to Carmel will undoubtedly take you to Ocean Avenue. Stretching from Highway 1 all the way to Carmel Beach, Ocean Ave is the center, and some would say the heart of Carmel, so take your time exploring the area with this Ocean Ave guide.
Shopping is the name of the game on Ocean Ave. Hedi's is the place to be if you are looking for a unique pair of shoes to call your very own. Families may wish to visit Starchild for high-end clothing that you may not be able to find anywhere else. If you are looking for souvenirs to take back home, Kris Kringle of Carmel is a holiday store that is open year-round. Satisfy your sweet tooth at the Cottage of Sweets candy store. Ocean Ave is also home to chain stores like Lush and Coach.
If you are looking for something to do that doesn't involve shopping, you will find numerous art galleries along Ocean Ave. Start with a visit to the Thomas Kinkade Studio in the Garden. This art gallery showcases the "painter of light," but many other artists are featured as well. Other galleries on Ocean Ave include Galerie Rue Toulouse, Galerie Plein Aire, and Meuse.
No Ocean Ave guide would be complete without mentioning some of the many eateries. Dametra Cafe offers Mediterranean food in a rustic, yet lively location. Reservations are required, but it is worth picking up the phone to experience both the food and the atmosphere. The Pangaea Grill is an excellent choice for small plates of Asian fusion cuisine. Those looking for a traditional Mexican restaurant can't go wrong with Villa Sombreros. The best breakfast in Monterey may be a few steps away from Ocean Ave, but it's worth taking the trip to one of these beautiful cafes.
At the end of Ocean Ave is Carmel Beach. This dog-friendly beach has some of the best views in all of California. The white sand is perfect for sunbathing, long walks, or simply resting after a full day of shopping along Ocean Ave.