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by Jill Loeffler •
Updated: March 28, 2023
A visit to the Monterey Museum of Art offers you the chance to see everything from early California paintings to magnificent photography. You will also see contemporary pieces and popular visiting exhibits during your visit.
The museum has two locations within Monterey, CA.
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This three-story landmark building in the downtown area houses eight galleries that showcase permanent collections and traveling exhibitions.
The organization's mission is to "engage community with the diversity of California art - past, present, and future." Therefore, you'll find a range of early American and Californian paintings, photography, and contemporary and modern art.
The focus on local artists allows you to explore California's history and landscape through a unique, in-depth lens that spans from 1875 to the present.
This location hosts several events throughout the year, including after-hours access on first Fridays, block parties, and summer art camps for the community. It also offers an art reference library where visitors can read and research during museum hours.
The La Mirada galleries sit in an elegant home in one of Monterey's oldest neighborhoods. This beautiful, historic property is less than a mile away from the Pacific Street location.
The building got its start as a modest stone adobe in the Mexican period and was later transformed into a lavish estate that entertained the stars of the silent film industry.
Since this location is only open for special museum events, you'll want to check ahead to see if they're offering a program while you're in town.
If you get the chance to go, you'll find more contemporary galleries and visiting exhibits here than at the downtown location. Make sure you also step outside to enjoy the museum's gorgeous rose garden.
Here are just a few more details on the permanent collections you'll find at the Monterey Museum of Art on Pacific Street.
Admission fees for the Monterey Museum of Art (Pacific Street location):
Admission to La Mirada by appointment only.
Insider's Secret: Before your visit, ask your hotel or look around town for the Monterey Museum of Art pamphlet. On the back, they often feature a 2-for-1 admissions coupon.
These hours are for the Pacific Street location only.
The Monterey Museum of Art closes on Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year's Day. The museum may be closed for winter break between December 23 to January 2 depending on the year.
The downtown location is at 559 Pacific Street, Monterey, CA, right across from Friendly Plaza and the historic landmarks Colton Hall Museum and Jail. It's easy to get to, and there is free street parking.
The La Mirada location is less than a mile east of the downtown museum at 720 Via Mirada, Monterey, CA. There is complimentary limited on-site parking here.
>> More great Monterey museums to visit
Comments? Questions? Suggestions?
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It’s a great place to interact with me and others that know the area well.
You can ask questions, get advice for your upcoming stay, and then share your photos and advice with others when you return home. It’s a great community and the fastest way to get answers to those nagging questions about your visit!