A bit south of San Francisco in California there is a wonderful place a few known about called Carmel. Despite its very short history of existence (only about 100 years), it has a rich artistic history. At some point about 60% of houses were populated by individuals who had devoted their life to art.
Carmel has amazing natural landscapes and the entire town has a very homely and cosy feeling about it. My first association was a Disney village. All houses are very well-maintained, and their gardens can certainly be called masterpieces. You can spend an entire day wandering about the quirky streets and alleys and exploring picturesque sights of Carmel.
If you are an artistic person, or just genuinely have an interest in art, Carmel is definitely a place to visit. I myself love to paint (surprise, surprise), so I was very pleasantly amazed by a number of art galleries and art-selling shops around such a tiny town. Literally, they are around every corner. If in Venice you can’t walk more than 15 meters without stomping into a bridge or a souvenir shop, in Carmel if you ever get lost don’t say “I am by an art gallery” because they are all over the place.
Some of the artworks I saw were truly remarkable. There are so many works by so many talented people that if you decide to buy a painting for yourself, chances are you will spend days choosing one. There are definitely more paintings in Carmel than in Louvre. During my visit I fell in love with one particular gallery. It sells and displays works by Richard MacDonald, the world-famous sculpturist who works with Cirque du Soleil. His works are truly remarkable. He has very unique style and all his works look so dynamic and rhythmic yet so still. It is simply amazing. I have tried to sketch a couple of his sculptures just to be a bit closer to his beautiful world of cirque and art. P.S. The photos of Richard’s sculptures below are taken from google images as the quality of my shots does not show them in their full glory.
One day maybe I will be able to open my own art shop in Carmel and then you can all come and visit me there… Dreams.
Carmel is located by the seaside, providing the town with even more stunning views, like if the town itself was not enough. If you feel bored on a summer afternoon, grab a pair of flip flops or sand proof shoes and treat yourself with a long walk along the beach. I will guarantee, you will feel much more happy and relaxed by the end of your little adventure.
During our stay we have filled our evenings with trips to numerous restaurants. One of the most wonderful things about Carmel is that it is so tiny that you can walk pretty much everywhere. So I very much enjoyed late evening summer walks home after a nice dinner. Not only were they refreshing and had a very fairy tale-like atmosphere but also made me feel a lot better about myself after eating an entire plate of pasta followed by a cake.
I have enjoyed my stay from the very begging until the very end. I am very glad that now Carmel is in my experience book. It was a wonderful adventure and I would love to repeat it some day.
Thank you for reading my story! Here are some more photos of this magical place.