Carmel by the Sea

Father’s day weekend, we had the pleasure of taking my sister-in-law and her husband to Carmel by the Sea. My family and I rented a wonderful 2-bedroom vacation home close to downtown Carmel and minutes away from shopping and Carmel beach.

One popular fact about this city is once having  a very famous actor and director as its mayor, Mr. Clint Eastwood. We also quickly learned a few more unique facts about this quaint city.  Like, our rental home not having an actual street number. The owner simply emailed us straightforward directions but my husband went ahead and used our GPS system to see if it could find the home and it did, no problem.

We wasted no time settling into the vacation home and headed out to the beach. On the way there we passed various boutiques, art galleries, quaint cottages, and restaurants. Our walk downhill Ocean Avenue was both scenic and educational. Another interesting fact about Carmel is that they have no street signal lights only stop signs. Which explained the long line of cars headed down to our destination.

Carmel Cottage down Ocean Avenue

With our shoes off but with jackets on (it was nippy) we planted our feet on the white and surprisingly powdery sand. Lil was ecstatic while Emmy was a little overwhelmed by the sensation of the sandy ground somehow “sinking” below her feet. Emmy sat on her dad’s shoulders majority of the time.

Lil headed straight for the water

Another Carmel fact: dog friendly city. We saw dogs at the beach, shopping, restaurant areas, art gallery and even at a 5k Father’s day run.

Sleepy host at Dog Art Gallery

Door stopper

Other Carmel dog pictures

Carmel Art Gallery At Night


Another Carmel fact: great destination for honeymooners, couples celebrating anniversaries and family day trip at the beach  BUT very few kid friendly restaurants. We did find one on our first evening called Casanova (Italian, French) thanks to an accommodating maitre de at Casanova’s sister restaurant. They offered the girls each a giant storybook with a kids menu behind it.

We had homemade breakfast, lunch and dinner the following day.

Our vacation rental home’s kitchen

We also enjoyed lunch at a small restaurant called Dametra Cafe. Word of advice, call ahead for reservations, place is very intimate but big on taste. The Dametra pasta plate was really good!

Check them out:

At the end of the day we learned a few more fun facts about beautiful Carmel like there are no mailboxes in any of the homes. They have a main post office as their hub for mail. And ladies, you can get a permit to wear high heels from City Hall. This unusual law was enacted to prevent the rise of lawsuits due to tripping accidents caused by uneven pavements.

Overall, it was a fun experience for the family and renting a vacation home was a big bonus. It gave us a chance to unwind, dine together (in peace), and hang out as a family.

Here’s Lil’s Carmel keepsake


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