Golf, Pebble Beach
Concierge.com's insider take:
The marquee course at Pebble Beach, Pebble Beach Golf Links (pictured) is every bit as gorgeous as it looks in the hundreds of pictures you've seen of it. It's tough to get a tee time, and you'll pay through the nose once you do—upwards of $450 per player—but this is the quintessential California golf experience (1700 17-Mile Dr.; 800-654-9300; www.pebblebeach.com). If you can't schedule a tee or stomach the fee, take heart: You can still have drop-dead water views from the Links at Spanish Bay, a traditional Scottish course on the same peninsula, where greens fees are $200 lower. There's also Pebble Beach's third course, Spyglass Hill, where only the first nine holes overlook the ocean; the second half of the course moves inland among forested areas. Greens fees are about the same as at the Links at Spanish Bay.
If even that's too rich for your blood, try the independent Poppy Hills Golf Course, designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr. The course sits slightly inland, near the other Pebble Beach courses, and lacks the spectacular ocean views of its neighbors. Greens fees hover around $200, however, which is the best you'll find in Pebble Beach (3200 Lopez Dr., at 17-Mile Drive; 831-625-2035; www.poppyhillsgolf.com).
Golf in this area isn't limited to Pebble Beach, of course; Quail Lodge and Carmel Valley Ranch are two top-rated resorts in Carmel Valley, and Bayonet was built by the U.S. Army at Monterey's old Fort Ord. For more information, visit www.seemonterey.com/golf-courses.