Monterey Bay’s marine environment is diverse and plentiful. See a handful of endangered species at one of the largest aquariums in the country, as well as oceanic life from sea lions and otters to pelicans and dolphins.
The coastal landscape of Monterey is the stuff dreams are made of: cypress trees on rocky shores surrounded by wind-flurried waves, with the cool Pacific stretching out as far as the eye can see. Scenic drives on Highway 1 or the 17-Mile Stretch allow visitors to experience this visual magic.
Since the late nineteenth century, Monterey’s natural light, rugged cliffside, and overall misty-dream aesthetic has attracted artists from across the globe — including novelist John Steinbeck, who famously called Monterey home.
Monterey is a wildly popular destination for scuba divers thanks to the Monterey Canyon, the largest and deepest underwater canyon off the Pacific Coast of North America. If you dare to say “I do” submerged in shadowy depths, this is your chance.
A city of firsts, Monterey boasts a rich history as home to California’s first theater, public building, public library, publicly funded school, printing press, and newspaper.
Don’t put off planning your ceremony until the last minute. Trust us when we say that it is absolutely essential to meet with Monterey wedding officiants ahead of time to make sure that you are comfortable with the person who is marrying you and your partner — and that he or she is available on your date. Next, meet with local ceremony musicians to determine the best processional music for you. No matter what tone you want to set for your walk down the aisle, these professionals can help you achieve your vision for the wedding ceremony you have always dreamed of.
Once you have said “I do,” it’s time to celebrate! It’s a good thing you have spent the last couple of months planning. You’ve already secured the most creative Monterey florists out there, the best local caterer, and the liveliest DJ that you could find. Now all that’s left to do is sit back, relax, and enjoy the dream wedding that you deserve.
Kick off your wedding festivities with an unforgettable rehearsal dinner. Monterey is bursting with outstanding restaurants, so get creative and choose a venue that shows a unique perspective of the city. Check out some of the area’s best rehearsal dinner venues and get ready for an amazing meal to begin an even more amazing wedding weekend.
Don’t let the party end with your wedding reception. Plan a day-after brunch and get the mimosas flowing for a few final toasts. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that Monterey boasts some phenomenal brunch spots. Pick your favorite and wish your guests a delicious farewell before heading back home.
Greet your out-of-town guests with a thoughtful and practical wedding welcome bag. Add in some Monterey-inspired goodies, like California wine or some locally made treats. This is also the perfect place to include the wedding itinerary, a map of the city, and any fun activities for your guests to enjoy between wedding festivities. With so many ideas for the ultimate Monterey wedding welcome bag, this special touch will do wonders to personalize the weekend for your guests and show just how thankful you are to have them share your special day.
Thoughtful wedding favors are a great way to thank your guests for partaking in your special day. From Fisherman’s Wharf taffy to golf balls from Pebble Beach, your guests will love the thoughtful and local touch. As you are deciding on your own wedding favors, check out some of our favorite Monterey wedding favor ideas for a little creative inspiration.
Your guests will have a full schedule exploring Monterey between wedding festivities. After all, there’s just so much going on here. We recommend making a few suggestions so that they can take advantage of the unique history, culture, and natural beauty this city has to offer. Check out TripAdvisor’s list of the top thirty things to do in Monterey for some of the best ideas.
Monterey’s restaurant scene just begs to be explored. Take advantage of this foodie’s paradise and enjoy some of the freshest seafood, innovative dishes, and decadent desserts around. See OpenTable’s ranking of the best overall restaurants in Monterey for some of the top suggestions.
As a popular destination that attracts visitors nationwide, Monterey accommodations are among some of the absolute best. The city is full of luxury hotels and quaint bed and breakfasts alike, so rest assured that there will be somewhere to stay for everyone. Check out some of Monterey’s top accommodations and suggest a few to your guests in a range of styles and price points.
The stunning sight of the Pacific Ocean and views of the majestic Santa Lucia's make Monterey a wonderfully diverse place for your engagement photos. Take advantage of the city’s gorgeous landscapes, from its natural beauty to its urban charm. As you start to choose what you want as your backdrop, make sure to check out our favorite Monterey engagement shoot locations for some ideas.
Get excited, because bachelorette parties in Monterey are one-of-a-kind. From wine tasting trolley tours to shopping to lively nightlife and more, this is the perfect bachelorette destination for any type of bride. Peruse our favorite Monterey bachelorette party ideas as you begin to make your own plans.
If you're heading to Monterey for your bachelor party, you’re in luck. There’s so much going on here from boating to beer tasting to bar hopping and more. As you choose from everything this city has to offer, check out our favorite Monterey bachelor party ideas for some planning inspiration.
Where would we be without the immensely talented pool of Monterey wedding vendors? Their passion for planning, commitment to their couples, and incredible ingenuity is what makes the local wedding scene as remarkable as it is, and it's the unique team behind every wedding working together that makes each event an affair to remember. Their combined experience and expertise is second to none, and we want you to benefit from it while assembling your dream team of vendors. Check out our Spotlight Series for in-depth Q&As with the best of the best in the industry, and make sure to read the articles they've contributed to Borrowed & Blue for the most reliable wedding tips and tricks, straight from the source.
The good news is that you’ve chosen a vibrant, scenic, and seriously fun location to gather your nearest and dearest on your big day. Congrats! The bad news? Your wedding location is so awesome that it draws a crowd for reasons other than your nuptials all year long. When selecting your wedding date, be sure you know what other activities are happening in the area that might put a cramp in your party’s style. We’ve gone ahead and done the legwork for you, so check out the annual calendar of major Monterey events and add them to your radar.
Check out some other useful local online resources to get you acquainted with all-things Monterey, from travel guides to the local restaurant scene to great local wedding blogs run by our friends in the industry:
Borrowed & Blue makes finding your ideal Monterey, CA venue a snap. With over 138 venues within 80 miles of Monterey, CA, we have your options covered. From intimate spaces to grand ballrooms to outdoor spots with a view, our search tool allows you to view photos and real weddings held at each location, read reviews from verified couples, and contact venues directly for pricing and availability