Weekend Getaway: Mendocino, California

Hey everyone!  It’s been awhile.  Since July to be exact.  That’s crazy, right?  I took a break from blogging right about the time Matt and I moved back to Nevada.  Yep, we’re back in Nevada.  (Maybe you didn’t even know we moved away?  We lived in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan for a year, but then hightailed it right back.  I guess we weren’t hearty enough for the U.P. Ha!)

So here we are.  I am thrilled to be blogging again.  Let’s get to it!

Back in October, I accompanied my friend Thea and her parents to Mendocino, California for a lovely weekend.

Mendocino is a cute, coastal village with pastel colored buildings perched on rugged cliffs in northern California.  Does it look familiar to you?  Quite a bit of the TV show Murder, She Wrote was filmed hereCan’t you just picture Angela Lansbury typing away?  The buildings in Mendocino sure do resemble the east coast, but the climate is much more moderate than Maine.

Mendocino, CA

We arrive in Mendocino late in the afternoon on a Friday.  Thea and her parents travel much like I do, that is, they like to see as much as they can while visiting a place.  After settling in at our bed and breakfast, we head out to the Mendocino Headlands State Park.  We hike the three-mile loop taking in the gorgeous views.  The park surrounds Mendocino on three sides and it is just spectacular.

MacCallum House Inn, Menocino, CA
MacCallum House Inn
Mendocino Headlands State Park
Mendocino Headlands State Park
Mendocino Headlands State Park
Mendocino Headlands State Park

Mendocino, CA

After our walk, we stop at the Mendocino Hotel for a drink while we discuss our dinner options.  We decide on Flow, and the timing couldn’t be more perfect as the sun sets on the ocean right outside our window.

The following morning we are up early.  After a delicious breakfast at the b&b, we head to Glass Beach over in Fort Bragg, followed by the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens.

Glass Beach, Fort Bragg, CA
Glass Beach, Fort Bragg

Mendocino Coast, CA

Glass Beach, Fort Bragg, CA
Glass Beach, Fort Bragg
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens

Back in town, we walk around for a bit and visit the Kelley House Museum.  The house was built in 1861 and is full of Mendocino history.

Earlier in the day we saw a flyer advertising jazz at the North Coast Brewing Company in Fort Bragg.  We buy tickets online and head up there in time for the 6:00 seating.  We order food and settle in for the show.  None of us are prepared for the amazing performance given by pianist Helen Sung and her band.

The Sequoia Room at North Coast Brewing Co.
The Sequoia Room at North Coast Brewing Company
The Sequoia Room at North Coast Brewing Co.
Helen Sung at The Sequoia Room, North Coast Brewing Co

It’s still pretty early when we make it back to our b&b, so Thea and I decide to go out for one last glass of wine.  And of course, we have to check out the local bar, Dick’s Place.  The bar is full of a younger crowd, and we are warmly welcomed, a perfect way to wrap up our visit to Mendocino.

Mendocino, CA

Other stops that are worth a visit: The Pacific Star Winery north of Fort Bragg has incredible grounds. The Point Cabrillo Light Station and MacKerricher State Park are also great to explore.  Also, on previous trips, we found great places to stay via Airbnb, from big beach houses to share with a large group of friends to quiet retreats for two.

I’d also like to mention two places Thea and I discovered on our drive to Mendocino. Cache Creek Winery off of Hwy 20, between I-5 and the coast has excellent wine. We stopped in Lucerne at a place called Fresh and Bangin’ Eatery because of the name, but we ended up very impressed with our lunch. (Oh! If you’re a craft beer lover, let’s not forget Anderson Valley Brewing Company in Booneville.)

That’s all I’ve got, but there is so much more.  What are your favorite things to do in Mendocino County?  How about your favorite places to eat?  Let me know in the comments.

Related posts:  More northern California weekend getaways in Nevada City, Sutter Creek, and Graeagle

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s