Hidden deep in Monterey County, California lies a beautiful European-style town called Carmel-By-The-Sea. It’s really small and quiet, but is no doubt one of the prettiest places in America.
I spent a day in this town last week when I was on vacation. To put it in words, the town reminded me of sea-salt caramel: sweet, salty, and delicious. The town is simple, smells like the salty ocean, and is full of picturesque houses and beautiful gardens.
Not only does the name Carmel sound relaxing and beautiful, but the town is just that way too. There’s really no way to describe it without putting you in my shoes.
So, take a moment from your busy life and imagine what I saw when I traveled to Carmel.
First, imagine the beach. Sand so soft that it cradles your feet with each step. The sand grains are white and pure, almost as if they had been dropped from heaven. Then, feel the cold water that surrounds your ankles and leaves your skin tingling with foam.
Next, look at the houses behind you. The storybook cottages stand on the edge of the beach with perfectly-manicured gardens and roofs covered in ivy.
The stone walls and curved roofs not only pull you into a fairy tale, but the flowers and trees in every yard flourish and glimmer as if each petal and leaf contains fairy dust. With a bitter sweet smile, you wish you could live in one of those magical $1,000,000 houses.
Before you get sucked into the scenery, you walk down Ocean Avenue, where all the rustic stores and art galleries await your arrival. Each store is unique and somehow familiar; not like the the stores in a mall, but full of history and neighborly love.
You can smell the ocean as you walk down the sidewalk and eat a giant snickerdoodle. Somehow, Carmel has kept itself away from the world. No stoplights, no parking meters. Just Carmel and the Sea.
As you tear yourself away from the art galleries and the lovely beach, you check in for the night at the Candlelight Inn. Candle light, indeed. Soft, warm, and peaceful. You sit by the fireplace in the courtyard and write your thoughts and feelings.
Look up, do you see the stars? Oh how they shine. What a magical place Carmel is. Close your eyes and take in the moment of this magical feeling.
Now wake up and return to your computer. Did you feel what I experienced in Carmel?
And you know what the best part is about Carmel-By-The-Sea?
It’s real. And you need to see it.