When it comes to size, the blue whale trumps anything that has ever walked, swam, or flown across planet Earth. Stretching roughly 80 feet long, these titanic creatures swim deep below the Pacific Ocean, feeding on thousands of tiny krill at a time?but like all aquatic mammals, they eventually have to come up for air. That's when they meet Blue Ocean Whale Watch.
Aboard a 60-foot sightseeing vessel, naturalist Kate Cummings spouts the aforementioned whale facts and much more. However, it's not until whales breach the surface or jump into the air that passengers truly comprehend their massive size. Even the naturalist herself?who has been on countless voyages?can't help but take a picture each and every trip. Ms. Cummings works alongside Captain Jim Davis, who's navigated the ocean currents and Poseidon's construction zones for more than 30 years.
The two head out in search of blue whales, humpback whales, and other marine life, including dolphins and sea turtles. The stars of the tours change throughout year (during the spring, summer, and fall, humpback whales make their way to Monterey Bay to feed on krill and anchovies), but passengers can always catch views and photos from the upper deck.
At Cantinetta Luca, Chef Jason Balestrieri rolls out handmade pastas, wood-oven-baked pizza, and roasted whole fish. Enhanced by seasonal, local ingredients, his family-style Italian cooking earned Cantinetta Luca a 2012 readers? award for Best Restaurant in Carmel from Monterey County Weekly. Balestrieri also cures salumi in-house to fill his signature antipasti plates, and has a salumeria next door.
Cantinetta Luca?s interior decor mirrors the Old World-style eats. Exposed brick covers a barrel-vaulted ceiling in one room, and dark-wood rafters crisscross overhead in another. Elsewhere, modern light fixtures cast their glow across contemporary furnishings, chiseled wood, and pillars of string cheese.
Greg Molkentin may have found inner peace through yoga and meditation, but that doesn't mean he likes to sit still. As the yogi behind Yoga With Greg, he shares his favorite yogic style - the flowing movements of vinyasa - with students throughout the week. Sometimes, he does this in a classroom, but, twice monthly, he also leads yoga-based hikes into local parks. He and his pupils climb the sandy dunes of Bakers Beach to catch glimpses of the Golden Gate Bridge before mimicking the architectural marvel with their bodies. Alternatively, they find watery ocean vistas between the trees in Land's End park, where they let the asana flow like the waves.
And even on these outdoor excursions, a large part of Greg's practice remains focused on meditation. Beyond his 200-hour yoga teacher certification, he also has 15 years of meditation experience with eight years of retreat practice in Kyoto, Japan.
It's probably not shocking that Giant Artichoke Restaurant is an artichoke lover's dream. Artichokes are everywhere here, from artichoke ravioli to artichoke-stuffed salmon to fire-roasted artichokes. Those who aren't in the mood for the thistle can turn to artichoke-less breakfast, lunch, and dinner offerings with American and Mexican flavors, such as chilaquiles, lamb tenderloin, and seabass-and-shrimp salad. Diners who remember to look up from their artichokes and cold drinks from the full bar can enjoy the views of Krakens steering sailboats across Monterey Bay.
Joey, a cheerful palomino, spent 30 years greeting visitors to Dreamor Ranch. Like many of the horses, he's lucky to be there. The ranch rescues horses from bad situations and works to place them in new homes. Other horses take up residence permanently on the sunny farm, which is financed largely by lessons. By learning the disciplines of English, Western, and Gymkhana from a professional instructor, patrons are also helping rescue horses. Trail and beach rides also give riders a chance to bond with their steeds, as does an active volunteer program on the ranch.
In honor of Women?s History Month, Groupon is celebrating an inspiring group of women: business leaders whose companies and brands enrich their communities. Thanks to the dedication and ingenuity of these leaders, local communities across the country are stronger and more diverse.
Shop the Women in Business collection.