MONTEREY COUNTY, Calif., Jan. 10, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- President Barack Obama has designated Pinnacles National Monument as Pinnacles National Park. The breathtaking 26,000 acre area is now Monterey County's first national park.
"This designation adds another layer of excitement and prestige for Monterey County tourism. It puts us on the map for a whole new audience of tourists. Tourism experts know there is a specific group of travelers that plan trips based around National Parks." said Tammy Blount, CEO of the Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau. "I'm thankful for the work of Congressman Sam Farr and the rest of our national team to get this important designation. It helps raise awareness on a unique Monterey County asset where incredible hikes are waiting to be discovered."
Wildlife enthusiasts will appreciate the 149 species of birds that call the Pinnacles home including 30 endangered California Condors. The Pinnacles system also houses 49 types of mammals, 22 reptiles, six amphibians, 68 butterflies, 36 dragonflies and damselflies, nearly 400 bees, and thousands of other invertebrates.
Pinnacles National Park is the country's 59th national park and the first National Park created by Congress since 2004.
Monterey County is located 120 miles/192 km south of San Francisco and 345 miles/552 km north of Los Angeles along the classic California corridor. The region boasts 99 miles of prime Pacific Coastline, the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, three historic missions, 40,000 acres of premium vineyards, 24 golf courses and over 250 lodging properties. Monterey County includes the Monterey Peninsula, Big Sur, North County and the Salinas Valley. The Monterey Peninsula Airport (MRY), just three miles from historic downtown Monterey and minutes from the area's major attractions, is served by non-stop flights to and from Denver (DEN), Las Vegas (LAS), Phoenix (PHX), Los Angeles (LAX), San Diego (SAN) and San Francisco (SFO). www.SeeMonterey.com.
SOURCE Monterey County Convention and Visitor's Bureau