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Parks & nature in Mendocino County

“This whole area has got to have the most spectacular coastline! It’s amazing what mother nature can do to a former garbage dump! When you park in the parking lot, there’s a sign with an arrow pointing to the left that says “glass beach”. This was the old original beach that was pilfered to death. You cannot get down there. If you go to the right of the parking lot however, there are beaches that you can walk down to. And yes, there is plenty of Seaglass, however it tends to be seasonal, depending on the surf. Personally, I just think it’s a nice little beach! ”
25local recommendations
“The dahlia garden is a must see during the summer months! First week of August is Art in the Gardens, a celebration of artists near and far, with over 100 vendors and of course, our local wineries! There is also a cafe during summer. In December there is the Festival of Lights, in which the front area is decorated, creating a beautiful and unique light show. There is also a heated, tented area with live music, wine and homemade treats. The Gardens are dog friendly, except for special events. Information on events is in the room, or you can visit online at”
23local recommendations
“New York Times said it was #3 of the 52 Places to Visit in 2014. We say it is a must see while you are at the Lighthouse, the rugged and wild North Coast of California at its best.”
13local recommendations
Nature Preserve
“Amazing, tucked-away giant redwood park. Very quiet and about an hour from Venado. 5 mins from the famed Orr Hot Springs”
25local recommendations
Tourist Information Center
“A good long beach with a nice boardwalk and cove at its northern end with a black sand beach and good tide pooling.”
16local recommendations
State / Provincial Park
“Beautiful, relaxing walk along the cliffside. Views of the ocean and the iconic town. You might see a whale, a seal, fishing boats, etc.”
16local recommendations
“Epic hikes and seasonal waterfall. Small protected cover, excellent picnic sites. Just north of Mendocino near the Point Cabrillo Lighthouse SP.”
16local recommendations
“Parking across from the park on the east side of Hwy 1 is free. Good mix of paved and easy flat surfaces. Good option for strollers.”
14local recommendations
“Hendy Woods is an amazing place to visit. A great place to do group camping or just a quiet family retreat.”
14local recommendations
“Summer concerts in the park. From June - August. Schedule and names of bands on the Lake County website.”
9local recommendations
“Boonville Pennyroyal Farm is more than just a tasting room, it is a great goat farm that produces the best goat cheese around! Kids will love the playground and dogs are allowed as well. Check on reservations for the goat tour.”
12local recommendations
Boat or Ferry
“One of our favorite things to do on the coast is to take one of the outrigger canoes on Big River. These watercraft are untippable. It's lovely to float up river, watch for wildlife and enjoy the great outdoors.”
11local recommendations
“Located just one hour north of the Point Arena Lighthouse, in the town of Casper, the preserve occupies a spectacular headland thrusting out into the Pacific. As you start to walk down the access road, the Point Cabrillo Light Station is arrayed before you, made up of the Lighthouse itself and three original lightkeepers' houses and outbuildings. The lighthouse, which has been fully restored, is open every day of the year (including Thanksgiving and Christmas) from 11:00 AM till 4:00 PM. ”
10local recommendations
“This is a great hiking area and the city view trail lets you overlook the city. It is a good walk not too strenuous and not too easy.”
8local recommendations
“Anchor Bay beach was one of the 10 best beaches in No. California! Because of a micro climate weather, it's warmer and less windy. You can park a car at the campground with fees. You are allowed to use a bathroom there.”
1local recommendations
“Dog and kid-friendly. The riverside is calm and smooth. Lots of seal and river otter sitings. Great for picnics. Walk over to the ocean side for some waves and driftwood collecting. Rent a kayak and travel upstream for a relaxing activity. Walkable access to town via steps. One of our favorite beaches!”
6local recommendations