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You are here: Monterey County Convention & Visitors Bureau > Great Deals > Cash in on Culture in Monterey County > Cash in on Culture in Monterey County: History

Cash in on Culture in Monterey County: History

Cash in on Culture in Monterey County
History Visual Arts Natural History May is California Museum Month. June is Monterey History Month


Here we list the major museums, events, exhibits and activities in May and June around the theme of History. Look for the as you explore these listings: it means there's a special value-added offer!

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Colton Hall
Pacific Street, between Madison and Jefferson, Monterey
About: Built in 1849 as a public school and town meeting hall, this historic building housed California's first Constitutional Convention and is the first American public building in California. Colton Hall is now a free public museum with the second floor restored to its 1849 appearance.
Hours: Daily, 10 am-4 pm.
Admission: Free.
Maritime Museum of Monterey
5 Custom House Plaza, across from Fisherman's Wharf, Monterey
About: Celebrating Monterey's seafaring history, this museum holds changing special exhibits, more than 50,000 photographs, almost 6,000 historic and naval artifacts, and a two-story 'First Order' fresnel lighthouse lens, plus a 4000-volume research library.
Hours: Daily except Wednesdays, 10 am-5 pm.
Admission: $8 for one adult, $10 for two adults; $5 seniors 60+ and military; $5 youth 13-17 years, under 12 free with an adult.

Offer: Free admission throughout the month of June.
Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmel
3080 Rio Road, Carmel
831-624-1271, x.213
About: Built in 1770 and still home to a thriving Catholic community, the Carmel Mission welcomes visitors to its basilica and surrounding gardens, fountains and on-site museums that display artifacts, clothing and vestments of the church.
Hours: Monday-Saturday, 9:30 am-5 pm; Sunday, 10:30 am-5 pm.
Admission: $5 adults, $4 seniors, $1 children 5-17 yrs, and free for children under 6.

Offer: Docent tours weekdays at 10:30, with additional tours being planned for May.
Monterey County Agricultural & Rural Life Museum
San Lorenzo Park, King City
About: Discover the Salinas Valley's agricultural past in six buildings: Exhibit Barn, Blacksmith Shop and Irrigation Building, plus the historic Spreckels House (1898), LaGloria Schoolhouse (1887) and King City Depot (1903). All are furnished with turn-of-the-century artifacts. Outside exhibits feature antique farm equipment from the late 1800s to the 1940s.
Main Exhibit Barn, 10 am-4 pm daily. Guided tours Friday-Sunday, 12-4 pm.
Admission: Free to museum. $3 fee on weekdays/$5 on weekends for vehicle entrance to San Lorenzo Park.

Offer: 10% discount in gift shop throughout May.
Monterey State Historical Park
Downtown Monterey
About: Explore more than 40 adobes, gardens and historic sites on the self-guided Path of History tour (brochures available at local visitor centers) or various guided tours scheduled throughout the year. Stops include Custom House, Pacific House, Cooper-Molera Adobe and Larkin House.
Call for schedules.
Admission: Free.
Presidio Museum of Monterey
Corporal Ewing Road, Bldg. 113, Presidio of Monterey, Monterey
About: Exhibits lead visitors through Monterey's various stages of military development — from the indigenous period, which highlights the area's native populations, through the Spanish and Mexican periods, on up to present day.
Thursday-Monday, 10 a.m-4 pm.
Admission: Free.

Fishing for History: A Cannery Row Tour
Saturdays in May
Saturdays & Sundays, June 17-Sept 3
Monterey Bay Aquarium, Cannery Row, Monterey
About: Stroll through time during a two-hour walk from one end of Cannery Row to Fisherman's Wharf in Monterey, led by a local historian. From the abalone fished for by native peoples and Chinese immigrants, through the salmon and sardines that made Cannery Row famous, learn how the ocean's bounty influenced the turn of history in California.
When: 1pm start for two-hour walk, most Saturdays year-round; also Saturdays & Sundays, June 17-Sept. 3 (call for exact dates).
Admission: $20 general admission, discounts for Aquarium and Monterey History & Art Association members.
Historic Garden Tours
About: Take a fascinating tour of Monterey's best-kept secrets. Learn about plant lore, identification, and uses. Tours begin in the Cooper-Molera Adobe courtyard and then proceed to the Stevenson House and (if time) Larkin House gardens.
When: Tuesdays at 1pm.
Sunday Tours at the Steinbeck House
Memorial-Labor Day
About: Explore the boyhood home of author John Steinbeck with two-hour guided tours.
When: Sundays between May 29 and Sept. 4.
Admission: $4 for adults, $2 for children (5-15), $3 for seniors and students.
Ask an Artifact! Workshop
May 7
Maritime Museum of Monterey, Monterey
About: Special workshop exploring artifacts in the Maritime Museum of Monterey, including the mysterious "fish board" and its revolutionary impact on the region's sardine industry.
When: 12-4pm.
Admission: $15 adults, $10 children aged 10-15.
Lower Presidio Historic Park Walking Tours
May 20
Corporal Ewing Road, Bldg. 113, Presidio of Monterey
About: Discover Monterey's rich history, starting with the Native American period and moving through the Spanish, Californio and American eras, while exploring the Presidio Museum and the Presidio's expansive grounds overlooking Monterey Bay. Presidio Museum curator and local historian Jim Conway will lead the tours.
When: 11am and 1pm.
Admission: Free.
75th Annual Merienda
June 3
831-372-2608 ext. 13
About: The Merienda recreates the joyous and carefree fiestas of Monterey's early Mexican settlers, known as Los Californios, with a barbecue, folkloric dancing, and live music. This annual birthday party, presented by Monterey History & Art Association since 1931, will be held in Custom House Plaza: apply for tickets early!
When: 11am-2pm.
Admission: $50 per person, $40 for MHAA members.
Adobe Fiesta
June 24
Old Monterey
About: A self-guided walking tour of 23 original adobes and historic buildings, plus cultural heritage exhibits, living history demonstrations and performances in Custom House Plaza. Refreshments at Perry Downer Carriage House and Casa Serrano included.
When: 10am-5pm.
Admission: $15 adults, $5 military and students.