Pacific Grove, in the pine forests on the westernmost tip of
Monterey Bay, is a magnet for wildlife, tourists, and scientists.
Site of the first operational lighthouse in California and the
first marine laboratory on the Pacific Coast, its beaches attracted
camp meetings in the 19th century. Rows of tent housing that lined
the original streets grew into charming neighborhoods of seaside
cottages, lit annually by the Feast of Lanterns since 1905.
Botanical and biological splendor attracted scientists like Edward
Flanders Ricketts, made famous by his friend and one-time Pacific
Grove resident John Steinbeck. Each year hundreds of groups use its
famous conference center, Asilomar, and each fall tens of thousands
of Monarch butterflies make a 2,500-mile journey to hang from the
pines in great clusters of wafting wings.
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