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Monterey and Carmel Two Day Tour without Accommodation


Make your own hotel arrangements so you can make Monterey and Carmel into a magical 2-day tour from San Francisco. Add an optional excursion to Big Sur, or the nearby wine country. On day two, head down the scenic 17-Mile Drive and check out charming Carmel-by-the-Sea.

Pickup at most San Francisco hotels
Picturesque Coastal California Highway 1
Old Fisherman’s Wharf and Cannery Row
Scenic 17-Mile Drive
Enchanting Carmel-by-the-Sea
Transportation to San Francisco on the last day
Optional excursions in Monterey
Hotel accommodation
Guide gratuity: recommended

It’s hard to imagine an experience with so much potential for lasting memories. By making your own hotel arrangements you can slow the pace on this 2-day tour. Then, customize your Monterey and Carmel-by-the-Sea experience with excursions that will leave you smiling from ear to ear.

Day 1 – Exploring the Coast and Monterey Bay Attractions

Begin your first day with a pickup in San Francisco. As your Expedition Leader drives along California State Route 1 toward Monterey, every bend in the road presents picture-perfect beaches, jagged cliffs and golden hills. At your first rest stop, take a photo with the Pacific Ocean as your backdrop!

Keep an eye out for the sea otters playing along the shoreline of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. This treasure was designated in 1992 and stretches from San Francisco to Cambria along 276 miles of coastline.

After arriving in Monterey just in time to grab a seafood lunch at Old Fisherman’s Wharf, explore the many shops and arcades along Cannery Row, a former 19th century sardine-packing district made famous by California author John Steinbeck. You are on your own for the rest of the day, but we offer a collection of excursions so you can customize your tour.

Looking for an adventure? Let us help you arrange kayaking, biking and more along the grand Monterey Bay Coastal Trail. Fascinated by local Pacific Coast sea life? Visit the world-famous Monterey Bay Aquarium during your free time, a wildly popular ocean conservation and research facility. Want something different? We can arrange tours to the Carmel Valley wine country or Big Sur. Your options are endless.

You are on your own for dinner with many ocean view restaurants to choose from.  After the meal, relax and lose yourself in the golden light and rhythmic sound of waves crashing along the beach before making your way to your hotel you have arranged and retiring for the night.

Day 2 – Rejoin the tour, then on to Charming Carmel-by-the-Sea

Start the morning with at your own pace with enough time to fit in another excursion to the Carmel Valley wine country or wild and scenic Big Sur. Want to stay a bit more local? Visit the Salvador Dali museum, enjoy the self-guided Path of History or let us arrange a small-group food tour of History Monterey. There’s so much to do that you will want to come back time and time again.

Check out of your hotel, eat lunch on your own, and then board your tour vehicle. Enjoy the Pacific beauty as your guide winds along the scenic 17-Mile Drive with a stop to photograph the famous Lone Cypress Tree. This rare Monterey Cypress tree is one of a select variety that are found only in Pebble Beach and Point Lobos.

After you’re done (for now) with the 17-Mile Drive, you’ll arrive at the charming town of Carmel-by-the-Sea. Spend your time at the boutique stores on Ocean Avenue or get some white Pacific sand between your toes at the beach.

At the end of the day, it will be time to return to San Francisco with memories and possibly with plans for your next tour of unforgettable Monterey and Carmel.

NOTE: Hotel reservations are NOT included in this tour. Please book your own hotel in advance.



Day 1

7:30 AM to 8:30 AM

  • Pickup at most San Francisco hotels

8:30 AM to 11:30 AM

  • Scenic Highway 1 drive along California’s Pacific Coastline
  • Stops at magnificent vista points to capture the best photos of the ocean

11:30 AM to 6:00 PM

  • Check in to your hotel accommodation (not included)
  • Take time to explore Cannery Row and Old Fisherman’s Wharf
  • Enjoy optional excursions to Big Sur, Carmel Valley wine country or a food tour of historic Monterey (select upgrades at checkout)

Day 2

8:00 AM to 1:30 PM

  • Free time - grab a bike, paddle board, or kayak to explore the California coast
  • See more of Cannery Row, or add another excursion

1:30 PM to 4:00 PM

  • Join your new tour group and depart Monterey
  • See sights from California’s coastline on the 17-mile drive
  • Take pictures of the Lone Cypress by the Pebble Beach Golf Link

4:00 PM to 5:15 PM

  • Explore, dine, and shop in Carmel-by-the-Sea

5:15 PM to 7:00 PM

  • Conclude the tour at your pickup location
  • Make the journey back to San Francisco

Important Information

How will we recognize the tour vehicle?

As we have several different vehicles, we don’t know until the morning of your tour which vehicle will be hosting your tour as well as the name of your Expedition Leader. Please feel free to call us in the morning of your tour if you like. Regardless of which vehicle will come to your location, it should say “Extranomical Tours” on it.

Are there restrooms on board the vehicles?

Our vehicles at this time do not have any restroom facilities. We do, however, make several stops throughout the tours and there will be opportunities for you to use the restroom.

What do I have to be aware of when traveling with a child?

Please note that for your child's safety, we require you to bring a child safety seat or booster seat for all children under 8 years of age or 4' 9" in height, as dictated by California State Law. You will be required to bring your own child seat on all motor vehicle tours. Failure to provide a seat for your child will result in forfeit of your seats on the tour without a refund. Please also note that any children 12 years and older must have an adult ticket as they do not qualify for a child-priced ticket.

What kind of luggage am I allowed to bring?

You are allowed up to travel with up to 2 items (i.e. 1 Personal item + 1 Overnight bag) free of charge. These items must be within the size limitations.

The maximum size allowed for an overnight bag is 22”x14”x9”, or 56cmx36cmx23cm. Any “Oversize” luggage larger than those dimensions is $50 regardless of the number of personal items brought on board. (i.e. 1 Oversized luggage - $50, 2 Oversized pieces = $100). You must advise us of oversize luggage 48 hours prior to departure in order to guarantee the accommodation of the luggage on the vehicle.

Great news! Our luggage policy does NOT apply to our Lake Tahoe tours! However, please be courteous and keep in mind that we have limited storage space on our vehicles.

Can I bring a wheelchair on the vehicle?

We do have wheelchair-capable vehicles available – subject to availability. Please notify us at least 48 hours in advance if you are bringing a wheelchair on the tour or at the time of your booking so that we can make the appropriate arrangements.

Do you have a lost and found?

Yes, items left in the vehicle are stored in a lost and found area for 30 days. If you left something on one of our tours, please give us a call office at 1-866-231-3752 (toll free from the USA) or 1-415-357-0700 to see if it has been found. Once you have confirmed with us that your item has been found by our staff and you are still in town, you can come by to pick up your item. Otherwise, we will ship almost any item to any destination within the U.S. for a flat fee of $25. Extranomical Tours is not responsible for lost or stolen items.

How accurate are the times on the itinerary?

Times listed are approximates only. Traffic and other unforeseen issues can cause delays or changes in these times, which are out of our control. Please do not make flight/travel arrangements on the same day as your tour. Extranomical Tours is not responsible for and will not be providing any compensation for missed flights or appointments.

What should I wear?

Temperatures vary depending on the season and time of day in the Bay Area, so we recommend that you wear layered clothing in case of unexpectedly climbing or falling temperatures. We do not recommend wearing shorts or sleeveless shirts in the winter. However, we realize that everyone is acclimated to different weather and thus trust you to make your own judgement. For footwear, we recommend comfortable walking shoes, such as regular tennis shoes, sneakers, or boots with rubber soles and treads. In the summer months, hiking sandals can be worn on the tour, but high heels, beach flip-flops, and other open-toed shoes are not recommended.

Do you offer that tour in different languages?

This tour is offered in English only. However, if needed we can organize a private tour in several languages.

Does this tour run every day?

Like all our group tours, a minimum number of participants are required before the tour can be confirmed. At this time, our online reservation system does not reflect current availability. If you would like to know if your desired tour has seats available, please call our office at 1-866-231-3752 (toll free from the USA) or 1-415-357-0700.

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Monterey and Carmel Two Day Tour without Accommodation

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