Hotel at a Glance: Vision Quest Safari Bed & Breakfast
Monterey Bay is an unlikely setting for an African safari, but Vision Quest Safari Bed & Breakfast offers the closest to the real deal this side of the Atlantic. The ranch is home to the Monterey Zoological Society and provides a haven for more than 100 exotic animals, many of whom have appeared in movies and TV shows such as Mighty Joe Young and Dr. Dolittle. The regulars here include lions, tigers, bears, mountain lions, panthers, elephants, monkeys, servals, bearcats, and baboons.
- Dig into a continental breakfast each morning, delivered by staff members and a hospitable elephant. You’ll also have an opportunity to feed the elephant during the visit.
- See the animals each afternoon on a guided tour of the facility. You’ll see big cats, bears, alligators, and a host of smaller mammals; available on day of check-in or checkout.
- Safari-style bungalows come with canvas walls and views of the mountains surrounding the Salinas Valley. You might even be able to hear the animals squawking and roaring in the facility. Each bungalow can sleep a different number of guests, so be sure to check the Room Details section of this deal to check the maximum occupancy of your desired room if you’re planning on traveling as a group of 3 or more.
- Watch elephants play in their 5-acre yard from the convenience of your own bungalow, depending on the unit.
- Extra perk: Some animals are also walked to the bed & breakfast area, so you’ll have another chance to see them out and about.
Please note: Children younger than 4 are not permitted at Vision Quest Safari Bed & Breakfast.
Please contact the property prior to your arrival for handicap accessibility requests or options.
Salinas, California: Charming Small Town near Monterey Bay
Salinas’s Oldtown is a slice of historic Americana, with a charming main drag lined with coffeehouses, bakeries, and a wide range of restaurants, pubs, and shops. The National Steinbeck Center downtown pays homage to Salinas native and Nobel Prize–winning author John Steinbeck. Exhibits include Steinbeck’s personal belongings as well as private letters and notes pertaining to some of his most popular novels, such as The Grapes of Wrath, Of Mice and Men, and East of Eden.
The Pacific coast is less than 20 miles away; there, a string of beach towns hugs the horseshoe of Monterey Bay. Spend the day shopping the upscale boutiques of Carmel-by-the-Sea or head to funky Santa Cruz to ride roller coasters along the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. You’d be remiss not to check out the Monterey Bay Aquarium, one of the world’s premier aquariums. The center re-creates several ecosystems, including a kelp forest, coral reef, sandy shores, and open sea. You’ll see hundreds of animals, including a variety of sharks, dolphins, whales, otters, jellyfish, and turtles.