THEY OWN IT: There are several words that are nearly synonymous with the Carmel-Pacific Grove-Monterey nexus. "Monarch" is one, given the wintertime butterfly population. "Cypress" is another, thanks to all of those twisty, turny trees that reach out from the highlands. And "otter" is way up there (we know, otters exist elsewhere, but they're the bewhiskered ambassadors for Monterey Bay). But we'd like to put forth another word that very much belongs to this particularly area: bracing. You're nodding, yes? Because you know. You know what it is to feel some salty sea air in the face, and "bracing" is the perfect descriptive. But if you're driving through the area, doing the scenic thing, it can be hard to truly enjoy the area's bracing qualities, even if your windows are rolled down. One solution? Find another mechanized transport, one where you're more at one with the elements. Are you thinking Segway? Heck yeah, you are.
17-MILE DRIVE TOUR: Segway Tours of Monterey offer up a few different routes around the area, including rolls over recreation trails and past historic sights. But that gorgeous, rambling, and, yep, bracing drive is also on the see-it-by-Segway list. You'll "ride on a portion," of course -- you probably guessed that -- but you'll take in some the Seventeener highlights: The Links at Spanish Bay, Point Joe, and plenty of cypresses along the way. The whole shebang is three hours, with training time, so you'll get a good amount of bracing-air action. Cost? Ninety five bucks. Reservations? Yep, make 'em ahead of time. Beauty, otters, golf courses, history? You bet.