Stinson Beach, CA
The small town of Stinson Beach
What a cute town! With a population of 486, there isn't much to the town except for one small main road. Cute little restaurants (actually I think there is a total of three in the whole town) and a small general store provided everything we needed! We ate dinner at the Sand Dollar Restaurant, which was delicious, and enjoyed sitting on the patio listening to the live piano player in the background and watching the sleepy little town close up for the night. Then we headed back up to Pantoll Campground (10 minutes away), lit a fire and reflected on our journey that was almost over.
It's the Cape Cod of California.
Which is why with one last hurrah to summer, we visited Stinson Beach. A slice of old-fashioned oyster-slinging, Sancerre drinking, small seaside piece of Americana, it sits smack dab in the middle of the Herculean goliath of a redwood forest that makes up the Muir Woods. With a population of well under 1,000 residents, it's charmingly unpopulated and easy to get to, sitting 35 mins from San Francisco.
The fog burns off late in the morning and rolls in on the early side of the evening. But for those few precious hours in between, one can capture pictures of the landscape like the one we caught. It's the type of place that gives you a moment that is undeniably epic. The kind in which you understand how the early explorers must have felt- dwarfed by a majesty which only nature provides.
Outdoor patios with live music, cafes, and the kind of snack shacks reminiscent of high school stadiums line main street. It is the kind of sleepy summer town where locals greet each other at a diner that holds mugs emblazoned with their names. You'll be comfortable walking around in cut-offs and a bathing suit. Dogs are welcome and the beach is BYOB.