Of course, for those who live on the Monterey Peninsula, it's all about the ocean and beaches. From Asilomar State Beach to Lovers Point Park, the road in Pacific Grove stretches from one magnificent spot to the next. The rocks and natural vegetation are simply breathtaking. Pacific Grove also has several small parks located throughout the city where you can venture to relax or take the kids to play.
For golf enthusiasts, Monterey is Seventh Heaven. While Pebble Beach draws worldwide attention, many a young golfer from the Peninsula learned to play golf on the course in Pacific Grove. Parts of the course are directly adjacent to the rocky shoreline of Pacific Grove's beaches.
Those looking for a bit of culture need look no further than the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History, located just a block down from Main Street. Another place to check out is the lighthouse at Point Piños – the oldest continuously operating lighthouse on the West Coast. Other popular destinations include the Monterey Bay Aquarium and Cannery Row located immediately adjacent to Pacific Grove in Monterey. Scattered throughout the city are art galleries that feature local artists as well as art from around the world.
For a small town, Pacific Grove offers the diner big city choices. Some of the best restaurants on the peninsula are located here. Enjoy Italian, Mediterranean or Mexican fare… or maybe just dinner at an old-fashioned cafe. Of course, don't forget the wonderful seafood at Pacific Grove's oceanfront restaurants.
The town had its beginning in 1875 as a summer Methodist camp, where several hundred people assembled to worship amidst rough tents. In time, the fragrant pines and fresh sea air brought others to the Pacific Grove Retreat to rest and meditate. The first camp meeting of the Pacific Coast branch of the Chautauqua Literary and Scientific Circle was held here in June 1879. Fashioned after the Methodist Sunday school teachers' training camp established in 1874 at Lake Chautauqua, N.Y., this location became part of a nation-wide educational/cultural network.
In November 1879, after the summer campers returned home, Robert Louis Stevenson wandered into the deserted campgrounds: "I have never been in any place so dreamlike. Indeed, it was not so much like a deserted town as like a scene upon the stage by daylight, and with no one on the boards" (an excerpt from The Old Pacific Capitol). By 1889, the resort was incorporated, becoming the City of Pacific Grove. The last Pacific Grove Chautauqua was held in August 1926.