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A Weekend in Mendocino

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Mendocino is a quiet part of Northern California that everyone I know seems to be in love with. I have never been but collected these highlights from there to help me plan--and I think they show off the area's serenity and love of local food.
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961 Ukiah St, Mendocino, CA 95460, USA
Anytime we get anywhere near Mendocino, we have to stop at the Brickery, the stand-alone bakery behind the renowned Cafe Beaujolais restaurant. This is where the breads are baked for the restaurant, but the bakers also sell retail right out the...
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44850 Comptche Ukiah Rd, Mendocino, CA 95460, USA
Innkeeper Jeff Stanford puts his ethics on the plate at Ravens' Restaurant in the Stanford Inn by the Sea. Vegan for both health and philosophical reasons, Stanford collaborates with certified nutrition consultant Sid Hillman and the Ravens' chefs...
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Caspar, CA, USA
This lighthouse is a pleasant quarter mile walk from the parking lot, so if you have kids make sure you bring a stroller or let them ride their bike—although you will end up carrying the bike back uphill.
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8205 North Highway One, Little River, CA 95456, USA
Llamas seem to be popular in Mendocino County, but on a recent visit we saw none lovelier than those roaming the spacious grounds around the Glendeven Inn, a rural B&B in Little River, with a wine bar, farm-to-table dinners, and ocean views. This...
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Little River, CA, USA
Mendocino has a bunch of small beaches along Highway 1. This one is right in front of the Little River Inn, in Little River, a town 2 miles south of Mendocino village.
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100 W Laurel St, Fort Bragg, CA 95437, USA
The Skunk Train (formally the California Western Railroad) dates to the 1880s and cruises between Fort Bragg and Willits, over trestles, through tunnels, and past some amazingly old Redwoods. It is indeed a "tourist attraction" but also a...
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1141 N Main St, Fort Bragg, CA 95437, USA
Residents of misty, moody Ft. Bragg used to throw their garbage from the cliffs above this beach. Entire cars, thrown into the surf. Then they cleaned it up. Decades later, what remains is just a pretty beach and a seemingly endless amount of...
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Boonville, CA 95415, USA
Boonville, a tiny town in the middle of California's Anderson Valley, is proudly anti-establishment and idiosyncratic. The area has its own language, and a radical newspaper that isn't afraid to print controversial stories. The last time I passed...
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Bowling Ball Beach, California 95468, USA
Odd-shaped geologic formations. These rocks are super round, a miracle of nature, the incessant pounding of the Pacific somehow shaping these formations into one of the weirdest and most unique looking formations I've seen on a beach. Bowling Ball...
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Greenwood Creek State Beach, California 95432, USA
Grab a deli sandwich from Elk General Store and head across the road down 1/2 mile to the beach. It is isolated with about 6 people at any given time. It has picnic tables and so much character that it held two busy boys for four hours while we...
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8501 CA-128, Philo, CA 95466, USA
This unpretentious tasting room is set in gorgeous country. Stop for a picnic--and some sips of brut rose--if you're cutting across the Anderson Valley en route to the Mendocino Coast.