Have you ever heard about Carmel-by-the-Sea, a small town in California, United States? This hidden place with stunning natural beauty and houses built in various European styles has been a nest for artistic movements for around one hundred years.
Carmel-by-the-Sea (or shortly called Carmel) is located on the Monterey Peninsula in California. Its expansion was highly influenced by the artistic exodus from San Francisco, a city located 190 km away.
The development of Camel-by-the-Sea begun in 1905, when the Carmel Arts and Crafts Club was formed to support and produce artistic works. In 1906, after a destructive earthquake brought San Francisco to ruins, the village became a welcoming home for numerous musicians, writers, painters and other artists migrating from the city. As the newspapers of the time noted, in 1910 more than 60% of Carmel’s houses were built by citizens who were “devoting their lives to work connected to the aesthetic arts.”
Hugh Comstock came here in 1924, fell in love with Carmel (and with doll maker Mayotta Browne) and stopped for a while to design beautiful rustic cottages, in an original, almost whimsical style. By 1929, the entire place was visually uplifted by Comstock’s beautiful cottages. This was a time when the city was home to Jack London, Mary Austin, Sinclair Lewis, Upton Sinclair and George Sterling, to name a few. You can read more about the beautiful story on Mental Floss.
Even the local councils were dominated by artists and the town has had several mayors who were poets or actors. An example is Clint Eastwood who have won a mayor mandate in the 80’s. Sometimes, you will hear visitors asking “Is Clint Eastwood still the mayor?”.
Located on the shore of the Pacific Ocean, Carmel-by-the-Sea is an inspiration for artists and romantic stories. For decades, this place has had a strange magnetism that attracted travelers from all over the world; this still happens today, mainly because the town conserved its avantgardist vision about creating and living in a community.
Rated in the “Top 10 Destination”-list in the United States year after year, Carmel-by-the- Sea has no other comparison in America, revealing beautiful European-architecture houses nestled above a white-sand beach and surrounded by forest. In Carmel, you will be delighted by amazing landscapes, historic sites (with specific tours), art galleries, restaurants, and nice boutique shops.
The town is also known for being dog-friendly, with numerous hotels, restaurants and shops admitting guests with dogs.
Another interesting fact is that Carmel-by-the-Sea has no addresses, parking meters or street lights, and no sidewalks outside the downtown area— but is still a great place to explore by walking.
To cast an even more exotic spell on the town, we would like to say that Carmel implemented several unusual laws throughout its history. One from the 1920’s (still active, apparently) includes a prohibition on wearing high-heel shoes without a permit, enacted to prevent lawsuits arising from tripping accidents caused by irregular pavement.
Another one was an ice cream ordinance prohibiting selling and eating ice cream on public streets in Carmel-by-the-Sea, but was overturned during Clint Estwood’s mandate—he definitely likes ice cream! Enjoy the virtual gallery and let us know what you think!