Portola Plaza: Downtown Portal

One Portola Plaza 008Portola Plaza is the portal between the Monterey Waterfront and the shops, restaurants and businesses of Alvarado Street and Monterey’s central business district.

The benches and fountain provide an inviting space to   watch passers-by. It’s a busy spot, with a  bank, ATM and Starbucks across the street. The MST bus and shuttle stop there, Portola Hotel & Spa guests arrive and depart, and name tag bedecked attendees swarm in and out of the Monterey Conference Center.

Portola Plaza is the “main office” for The Original Monterey Walking Tours – we meet our customers and begin our tours there. Other tours and shuttles make regular appearances also.

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Gaspar de Portola, Portola Plaza Monterey CA




Several commemorative plaques are scattered about and Gaspar de Portola himself surveys the action from atop his pedestal in the center of his eponymous domain.

To find Portola Plaza from Fisherman’s Wharf and Custom House Plaza, walk along the Alvarado Mall to the front of the Portola Hotel. From the downtown side, walk down Alvarado Street with the one way traffic until you reach Del Monte Avenue.

Street parking in the area is time restricted and heavily enforced. $7 will buy all day parking in the East Garage, just two blocks away; enter from one of four entrances on Del Monte, Franklin, Tyler or Washington.