Monterey is known for its world-class golf courses, vineyard tours, and delicious wines. With all of this in mind, you may be wondering if there are things for families to do in the area? You're in luck. In addition to the fun things to do for adults, there are plenty of activities the whole family can enjoy together. Here is a list of the best Monterey family-friendly activities.
Dennis the Menace Park
Kids will love exploring this outdoor playground, designed by the artist behind the classic comic strip, Dennis the Menace! This playground has everything a kid could want—from tunnels and slides to mazes and even a rock-climbing wall! There’s also a full-size train located at the park as well. The playground is situated in El Estero Park and offers waterfront views.
One of the best Monterey family-friendly activities is visiting the Monterey Zoo! Children of all ages will enjoy getting up close and personal with their favorite animals like elephants, lions, parrots, reptiles, Capuchin monkeys, sloths, and much more. The zoo also offers special tours that allow you to ride on oversized stuffed animal carts around the zoo, go on a walking tour, or get a behind-the-scenes look at how the African Elephants at the zoo are cared for. Zoo hours are 10 am to 3 pm daily, except for select holidays.
El Estero Skate Park
Great for the teens in the family, explore Monterey's dedicated skate park complete with ledges, half bowls, and railings so you can skate to your heart's content.
My Museum is a place just for kids to explore and get hands-on educational experience. There are various rooms with themes such as beach, theater, hospital, and farm. Each room has a target age range that it's best suited for. There are over 50 exhibits at the museum that allow children to explore, touch, play, and engage all five senses while learning at the same time.
Monterey Peninsula Recreational Trail
Explore the natural beauty of Monterey Bay on this 18-mile trail. It’s a paved asphalt trail, which is great for bike riders and walkers of all ages to get out and enjoy some fresh air. The trail winds through Cannery Row and passes the Monterey Bay Aquarium, Fisherman’s Wharf, and Monterey State Beach.
Old Fisherman's Wharf
Fisherman’s Wharf is a can’t-miss experience in Monterey. The area is home to several restaurants, shops, and other great activities for the entire family. The wharf is on the water near Monterey Bay, so strolling around the wharf provides stunning waterfront views. The wharf is the headquarters for many boating excursions in the area, such as whale watching, sailing, or riding on a glass-bottom boat. The wharf also hosts family-friendly events throughout the year.
No trip to Monterey would be complete without a trip to Cannery Row. One of Monterey's most famous places, Cannery Row, was immortalized in John Steinbeck’s novel of the same name. The area became a hub for the world’s sardine canning in the early 1900s but is now a revitalized shopping, dining, and tourism district. Cannery Row is a waterfront street so that you can view local wildlife like sea lions and otters. Kids will especially love the Ghirardelli Ice Cream parlor and Zucchini's Tricks and Things shop.
Family fun in Monterey, CA
Fuel up with the best breakfast in Monterey before you head out on your day of family-friendly adventures. Check out our blog to discover everything Monterey has to offer!