From Monterey, California, go north on U.S. Highway 1 approximately 11 miles, to the Del Monte exit. Go left on Del Monte which becomes a dirt road. The dirt road ends in the refuge parking lot. From Castroville, California: go south on U.S. Highway 1 approximately 3 miles to the Del Monte exit. Go right on Del Monte which becomes a dirt road. The dirt road ends in the refuge parking lot.
Salinas River Refuge is located approximately 11 miles north of Monterey at the point where Salinas River empties into Monterey Bay. The refuge encompasses several habitat types including sand dunes, pickleweed salt marsh, river lagoon, riverine, and a saline pond. The area provides habitat for several threatened and endangered species, including the California brown pelican, Smith’s blue butterfly, the western snowy plover, the Monterey sand gilia, and the Monterey spineflower. Salinas River Refuge is open to the public though there are no facilities beyond a parking lot and footpaths. Those willing to walk from the parking lot to the beach are rewarded with beautiful scenery and an excellent presentation of native dune vegetation. Dogs, horseback riding, and camping are not permitted due to the sensitivity of the habitat. Please contact the Refuge for other restrictions.