A Journey to Monterey...

After a little rest from our trip south it was time to head north toward Monterey.  We stopped by Pepperdine University in Malibu to visit with our young friend, Luke and it was so nice to see him...we have missed him since he left. 

Santa Barbara was beautiful and while Bobby went exploring around the waterfront, I spent some time shopping.

We stopped by The Madonna Inn, which is a quirky and whimsical place.  Each of the 110 guest rooms and suites is uniquely designed and themed.  It was magical!  We spent the night near Cambria and had dinner at Robin's Restaurant.  It is a quaint little place with international fare and an amazing Tempeh Korma.  We sat on the porch which was cozy and romantic.

The next morning we began our journey at the Elephant Seal Rookery.  This is a must see if you are in the area.  There were hundreds, if not thousands of Elephant Seals all along the shore and in the water. 

Along our journey we happened upon the Ragged Point Inn & Resort.  The gardens around the property were filled with beautiful flowers that attract a number of monarch butterflies and hummingbirds.  The property is beautiful and deserves a stop if you are in the area.

We stopped at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park for some hiking.  The hiking trails were "rugged" but seeing the redwoods sure made it worth the effort.

We finished our tour with lunch and a little shopping in Carmel and driving the 17-Mile Drive through Pebble Beach.

The later part of our trip to California consisted of time spent in Laguna Niguel with our friends and hosts, Rob and Susan.  We joked around about being "long term guests" and that we might just stay and not return home.  It was during this weekend that I discovered Acai.  I know, where have I been?  We went to Active Culture in Laguna Beach and I chose the Velvet Acai Bowl which has a tropical flair with coconut milk and mango.  Needless to say, I am now quite addicted and have been making these at home. Just Google "Acai Bowls" and find a ton of recipes.  I will share mine once it is perfected!

We wrapped up the weekend with an exciting episode of American Ninja Warrior followed by a competitive game of Jenga.

We loved California...its beauty, cuisine and friendly people and we look forward to our next visit!

Missed the post about Southern California?  Check it out HERE!