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Monterey Old Fisherman’s Wharf is roaring back tourism

MONTEREY, Calif. (KION-TV)-  Old Fisherman's Wharf in Monterey is getting ready to receive an uptick in tourism ahead of Memorial Day weekend and the summer season.

Local people and tourists took a stroll on Old Fisherman's Wharf in Monterey on this beautiful Friday afternoon.

Restaurant business owner Kevin Phillips said his businesses on the wharf really suffered because of the rainy season.

"The amount of rain, the frequency, the timing of the rain...every weekend, all throughout Christmas week," said Phillips, owner of Rockfish Harbor Grill & Abalonetti."It's very tough."

Phillips has high hopes about more tourism coming into the area -- now that the weather is nicer.

"We're already seeing an uptick in traffic," said Phillips. "All the events are coming back bigger than ever, we're also seeing a lot of European tourism that we haven't seen in the last three years or so."

Last year, according to an article by Visit California, the state generated 134.4 billion dollars in visitor spending and 1.1 million dollars in tourism jobs.

It said state and local taxes paid by visitors reached up to 11.9 billion dollars -- more than 90% of pre-pandemic levels.

Hostess Lauren Libera, who works for Crab Louie's Bistro, is also hopeful about the uptick in tourism, especially because Memorial weekend and summer are around the corner.

"Memorial Day is actually a great start to our summer because we have so many people who come down here on the wharf, and they want to eat great local seafood," said Libera.

Tourists like John Maggio, who is visiting California from Boston for the first time, said it would not be his last trip to Monterey.

"The beaches are amazing," said Maggio. "I haven't tried the food yet, so I'm excited to eat here, and I really like Monterey."

Business owners also said the uptick in tourism would help them and their workers.

New research from Visit California said more than 70% of tourism generates local business opportunities and provides jobs to local people.

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Nataly Gutierrez


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