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Wind South for a Day of Seaside Discoveries

Updated: Jun 3

Southbound on Highway One promises a day of rugged & stunning views. The drive from Mendocino all the way to Jenner features ocean vistas, tiny towns, historic points of interest, and even an African wildlife-preserve where you can view free-range zebras, antelope, and even feed giraffes!


Northern California , mendocino coast, point arena, giraffes, safari
B. Bryan Preserve - Point Arena, CA

From Mendo, head down the coast and grab a sandwich at the Elk Store. Take it to the cliffside picnic benches for lunch with a view that can't be beat. Then head down the meandering path to the beach where you can get your steps in and some sand between your toes. After Elk, you can keep driving south for more discoveries along the majestic Pacific, or head back towards Mendocino and cruise into Navarro Beach to see seals and sea lions frolicking where the ocean meets the river.


Light house, point arena, Northern California, mendocino county, places to visit, things to do
Point Arena Lighthouse

If you’re keen for the full day trip, Point Arena is the perfect oceanside drive from Mendocino. Soak in that coastal view, snack & sip in style, and add-in your pick of nature, animals, history, or maybe some of all of the above. An hour’s cruise along the scenic Pacific Coast lands you right in downtown Point Arena. Stop at the Point Arena Lighthouse along the way for some history and leg stretch. Or, make New Museum Brewery in the heart of Point Arena your first stop and fuel-up on Beaujolais-made tacos with a couple New Museum craft brews. After, you might grab a sweet treat at Franny’s Cup & Saucer just down the block. From here, venture onward to the Point Arena Pier to scope the local surfers or head just above town to B. Bryant Preserve and kiss a giraffe.


Beach, California, California beaches, Northern California, mendocino coast, mendocino county
Bowling Ball Beach, Point Arena, Ca

Hungry for more? The windy Pacific Coast Highway has endless views to share, so skip a bit further south – hey, you’re already this far and it’s just so gorgeous. Just south of Point Arena, you can take your shoes off at the unique and remarkable Bowling Ball Beach and then head for a cliffside hike in Salt Point or check-out historic Fort Ross for a little local lore on some of The Coast’s early Russian settlers.



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Point Arena Fishing Pier

By the time you circle back north it might just be dinner time. Lucky you! Izakaya Gama in Point Arena offers inspired farm-to-table Japanese fare, and Harbor House in Elk serves an exquisite Michelin-starred multi-course tasting menu. Of course, you can always head back to Mendo for a wonderful meal, too.



Wherever the day takes you, we wish you a fantastic adventure!

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