For a classical experience, one of the most prestigious festivals in Northern California is the Carmel Bach Festival (www.bachfestival.org ). For three weeks each July and August, Carmel-by-the-Sea  and its surrounding towns host dozens of classical concerts.
Naturally the works of J. S. Bach are featured, but you can also hear renditions of Mozart, Vivaldi, Handel, and other heavyweights of Bach’s era. Choose between big concerts in major venues or intimate performances in smaller spaces with only a small audience between you and the beautiful music.
Concerts and recitals take place literally every day of the week—budget-conscious music lovers can just as easily enjoy the Festival in the middle of the week as on the weekends.