The most challenging part of planning a kayak excursion is deciding where to go. If you’re ready for an open water paddling experience, kayaking is an exhilarating way to explore Monterey Bay offering an incredible perspective of marine wildlife and stunning coastal scenery.
This kayaker's paradise
is about a two hour drive south from San Francisco
and the Bay Area.
can't beat the scenery in Monterey,
where the climate is mild
Monterey Bay is sheltered and the atmosphere is peaceful, making it an extraordinary place for a paddling getaway. A good place to start an exploration is along the Monterey and Pacific Grove shore, from Fisherman's wharf to Lover's point. This area is inside Monterey Bay and is calm and protected.
Wildlife abounds in this remarkable setting. Paddlers can view seals and otters frolicking in the sun and swimming beneath your kayak. Seals can get overly curious and climb up on the kayak decks. If you keep a close eye out, you may catch a glimpse of leopard sharks and bat rays too. Lucky paddlers may see dolphins as they playfully cruise along the shoreline dancing in the waves. Sea lions perch on rock outcropping and starfish cling to the sides of rocks. Seals have pups in the spring so avoid paddling too close to minimize disturbance.
The bay is an important habitat for coastal birds, fish, and marine mammals like sea lions, harbor seals, and sea otter that feed and play in the protection of the kelp beds. Soaring cormorants, seagulls, pelicans, sandpipers, loons, and grebes glide overhead.
You may catch a variety of species kayak fishing on the bay including salmon, rockfish, lingcod, mackerel, surfperch, smelt, halibut, or squid. Catches vary from year to year depending upon variables such as ocean and weather conditions. Depending on the current season, kayakers can try their luck at salmon, albacore, giant squid, lingcod, halibut, rockfish and white seabass. Don't get in harm’s way of aggressive wildlife, especially sea lions, seagulls and pelicans that may try to steal your bait or catch.