Carmel-by-the-Sea had been a recommendation from family before we went as we were unsure whether to go here or the larger Monterey. Carmel has one of the most stunning beaches that I have ever seen and it really is impressive when you walk down and catch your first glimpse of the sea.

We stayed in the Lamp Lighter Inn, a boutique style hotel not far from the beach. We arrived at about 6pm and were pleased to see we’d made it just in time for the complimentary wine and cheese hour for visitors. The idea of the hotel is that guests interact with each other and the rooms are built around an open courtyard with seats and firepits for the evening. It is noisier than a standard hotel but this felt like part of its charm. We stayed in the Sea Star Room which was lovely and had a wood-burning fireplace ready to be used. The hotel also offers a ‘beach kit’ for use in the evening which consists of chairs, glasses, blanket  and materials for a fire.

Carmel was a lovely place for an overnight stop and the beach is one of the best I’ve seen.


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