With soaring sea cliffs, a wild Pacific coastline, and the allure of the Big Sur at its doorstep, Monterey is clad in deep azure hues. Its vibrant seascape is steeped in a storied past, one that began with Native American tribes, extended to Spanish and Mexican invasions, and was eventually sealed with its incorporation as a Californian city in 1850. Since then, Monterey has grown into a quiet center of the arts, with its riveting cavalcade of museums, galleries and festivals that have since found home here. This romantic town was also the setting of the literary-charged Beat Generation, one that inspired artists like John Steinbeck and Robert Louis Stevenson to publish some of their greatest works. In the modern world, Monterey still holds on to these timeless vestiges, yet propels forward in fashion characteristic of an emerging Californian town. From the historic industrial quarter of Cannery Row that is now home to a wealth of sea-embracing restaurants, bars, shops and clubs, to the Monterey Bay Aquarium that evidences the striking marine heritage of its eponymous bay, Monterey is a soul-stirring gem waiting to be discovered.