Jack Nicklaus once said, "Augusta is my favorite place to go play golf. But Pebble Beach is my favorite course to go to." It's easy to see why. Pebble Beach is among the most beautiful courses in the world and the view of the shoreline from the 18th hole, with its single Cyprus tree in silhouette, is particularly stunning. Opened since 1919, The Lodge at Pebble Beach is famous in its own right, having hosted five US Open tournaments and bold faced golf enthusiasts from Teddy Roosevelt and Winston Churchill to Justin Timberlake and Tiger Woods.
Even if you're not a golfer, Pebble Beach is worth seeing and their lineup of restaurants and bars, many of which have views of the 18th hole, should be on your list of places to dine if you're in the Monterey area. We spent an afternoon at The Bench, the Lodge's more casual restaurant with comfy outdoor seating position around fire pits, which keeps things cozy if wind comes off the water. The menu focuses on wood-grilled fish, steak and chicken and fire-roasted veggies, all of which are delicious. But the must-order is a bottle of your favorite champagne or wine to sip as you watch golfers finish up what for many of them is a bucket-list game on one of the world's top courses, and raise your glass as they pass by grinning ear-to-ear.