I was skeptical at first when my husband found this affordable hotel that could sleep the five of us in Carmel as Carmel is one of the most expensive towns to stay in whenever we travel down the coast. The Carmel Mission Inn (www.carmelmissioninn.com) is located in Carmel Valley not Carmel-by-the-Sea. It backs up to a charming collection of flower bedecked boutiques and restaurants. Carmel-by-the-Sea is reached in about three minutes by car. We made the odd discovery that despite its proximity there is often sunshine in Carmel Valley while the town is still shrouded in fog. The rooms that accommodate five have two queens and a long and wide window seat. The amenities are all upscale including a pool, hot tub, workout room, robes . . . Breakfast is not included in the price but available in the dining room. Instead, we walked over to a charming coffee shop for our early morning revival.
A note about Carmel-by-the-Sea parking: there are time limits for parking in the town near the businesses alternatively if you drive all the way to the ocean (about three blocks past the town) the parking is free and there are no time limits. The kids love this town which we have visited since they were quite little. There are wonderful nooks and crannies amongst the fairy tale stores, pastry shops, the beach, and lots of dogs to pet.
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