Sitting between the two pop-culture powerhouse cities of Los Angeles and San Francisco, Monterey might not stand out as a pioneer town for anything except gorgeous beaches and laid-back living. But in truth, this is a town of firsts: it has California’s first state historic monument, it was where the Golden State’s first newspaper was printed, and it’s also home to California’s first state theater. For music fans and appreciators, Monterey is a place for iconic firsts for pop, rock and jazz culture: it’s the host of the oldest, and probably best-known, jazz festival in America, and became the unofficial Ground Zero of the ‘Summer of Love’ with the legendary Monterey Pop Festival of 1967.
Welcome to Monterey, home of the magnificent Monterey Bay Aquarium, Cannery Row, and a John Steinbeck novel or two. As any astute traveler knows, the best way to really experience what a place has to offer is to go exploring by foot. From your base at HI Monterey hostel, you can cover many of Monterey’s historic, scenic and downright delicious must-dos in half a day. The Queen of Cannery Row and Mack and the Boys