Mendocino Coast Guide: Exploring the Best Spots in Fort Bragg, Mendocino & Point Arena

Mendocino County is one of my favorite places in Northern California. The entire area is a coastal wonderland with lots of amazing views, great places to eat, beautiful state parks to explore and even a strong wine producing region. While I could talk about each of these places alone, a true visit to the Mendocino Coast would allow you to experience many of the popular towns like Fort Bragg, Mendocino, Point Arena, and Elk. These are the towns covered in the guide below, and make sure to let me know what I left off in the comments.


The Mendocino Coast has a lot of great hiking and a few of the best hikes are headlands trails that go along the coast. There are also redwoods groves and waterfalls to explore though and here are some of my favorite spots.

Mendocino Headlands

Russian Gulch Waterfall

Van Damme Pygmy Forest

Russian Gulch Headlands


Not to be outdone by the hiking, the Mendocino Coast has a few truly unique adventures like riding the Skunk Train and feeding giraffes. The Fort Bragg area also has one of California's most famous beaches, Glass Beach. Here are adventures to check out.

Skunk Train Railbikes

Glass Beach

B. Bryan Preserve

Mendocino Botanical Gardens

Historical Points of Interest

This area has been an important place for the logging and shipping industry for the better part of a century, because of that there are a few unique historical points of interest like lighthouses and old bridges that are worth your time.

Point Cabrillo Lighthouse

Skunk Train

Pudding Creek Trestle

Point Arena Lighthouse


While the towns in the area are pretty small, there are still a lot of really great food spots to indulge in while in the area. Honestly, though some of the best food can be found when you stay at places like Brewery Gulch or Little River Inn as both of them have fantastic restaurants. Here are a couple of places I like in the city though.

North Coast Brewery Restaurant

GoodLife Cafe & Bakery


On Highway 128, inland from the Mendocino Coast, there are dozens of wineries all along the road. If you have a half day, stop in a bunch of them and try them out. Lula is probably my favorite on that stretch, and if you head up to the Fort Bragg area then be sure to stop at Pacific Star Winery.

Lula Cellars Winery

Pacific Star Winery


Of course you will need a place to stay while you are in the area and I have had the opportunity to stay at many amazing hotels along the Mendocino Coast. Each of these was a fantastic experience with friendly staff, good breakfast, and great views.

Brewery Gulch Inn

Little River Inn

Inn at Newport Ranch


I made a few videos of my time along the Mendocino Coast, check them out below!

Now it's your turn, what did I leave off that you love exploring in Mendocino? Be sure to leave it in the comments.

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About JoshMc

Thanks for checking out the blog, I am happy to be sharing my adventures with you! You can get to know me by reading my about me, which includes a video and additional information on the site, myself and my full disclosure. Also, follow along on Twitter here or read all of my posts on this blog here.