King City is the southern gateway to Monterey County offering a myriad of outdoor and historical recreational activities for the entire family.
Good things and places to explore are: Salinas Valley, the Pinnacles National Monument, Santa Lucia Highlands Wineries, the Scheid Winery, missions, Big Sur, and Monterey.
King City is renowned for its ranching and agriculture. But it is also of great interest to literary, history and adventuring travelers. Much of John Steinbeck's work is set in this area, and mentioned prominently in his book “East of Eden”. His mother's parents lived here, and his mother instilled in him with a powerful sense of story telling. This is the setting for his first California novel, “To A God Unknown”. And he wrote of the mountain ranges on both sides of the Salinas valley from a King City perspective. This is a good overnight spot for visiting the National Steinbeck Center in Salinas.
Pinnacles National Monument is close to King City, making this a good place to stay while visiting that intriguing mass of geology. An interesting way to drive to King City by way of the Pinnacles is Bear Valley.
Mission San Antonio De Padua is 24 miles west, and it is the way to one of the most enchanting ways to get to Big Sur. And the San Antonio Valley is quintessentially a California coastal valley without development. It is of historical curiosity too, as William Randolph Hearst, and the family architect, Julia Morgan, built a lodge there, Hacienda.
King City is a good base camp for exploring two other missions, San Miguel and Soledad also.
In the Santa Lucia Mountain foothills you can find an exotic hot springs, Paraiso. It was built by Southern Pacific Railroad as a resort destination for train travelers. Today it is a little ramshackle but delightful. And the pools are some of the most spectacular thermal waters on the continent. Outstanding wineries abound in the King City region. a few worthy of mention are Chalone, Smith and Hook, Paraiso, Lockwood, Shied, Kendall Jackson, Morgan.
Nearby Tourist Attractions:
- One of the finest wineries, within 10 mile radius
- San Lorenzo Park, 0.5 miles
- King City 9 holes Golf Course, 0.5 miles
- San Antonio Mission, 18 miles
- Soledad Mission, 20 miles
- Pinnacles National Monument, 22 miles
- Fort Hunter Ligget, 22 miles
- Los Padres National Forest, 30 miles
- Lake San Antonio, 40 miles
- Camp Robert's, 40 miles
- San Miguel Mission, 40 miles
- Lake Nacimiento, 45 miles
- National Steinbeck Center and Museum, 51 miles
- Laguna Seca Raceway, 65 miles
- Moneterey Bay Aquarium, 65 miles
- Pebble Beach Golf Course, 65 miles
- Santa Cruz Board Walk and Beach, 80 miles
- Hearst Castle, 100 miles
- San Jose's Winchester Mystery House, 100 miles
- Salinas Airport, 50 miles
- Monterey Peninsula Airport, 60 miles
- San Jose International, 100 miles
- San Francisco International, 150 miles