Living in California, we are spoiled with an abundance of coastal towns and scenic beaches. For most of us, visions of LA come to mind. Sure, there are countless beautiful beaches in Southern California. But, what about up north?
Mendocino County is one of the most beautiful places you must-see in California. And I think it’s super underrated. It doesn’t get nearly enough attention as it deserves.
My family recently went on a weekend getaway and let me tell you- Mendocino will have you coming back year after year. The laid back vibes and ocean views will have the entire family making new memories that will last a lifetime.
Before I get started on the list of activities, let’s talk about where to stay. Little River Inn is a beautiful family owned and family run inn located on HWY 1. The views are breathtaking! Take a look at the aerial view of the property, here. Little River Inn has everything you and the littles will need while on vacation. For more info about the inn, check out our previous blog post titled Best Place To Stay With Kids In Mendocino- Little River Inn.
Here’s a list of things to do with kids in Mendocino County!
Liquid Fusion Kayak offers guided tours for the whole family. They even have kayaks to accommodate our four-legged friends. Tours can be done in groups or private. Kayaks are also available to rent if you prefer to explore on your own. Jeff and Cate are excellent tour guides and their enthusiasm for the wildlife in the area is infectious! Book your tour here.
The Skunk Train is an iconic attraction in Mendocino County. It’s been making its way through the redwoods since 1885. The Pudding Creek Express is a 7-mile, 75-minute, roundtrip along the Pudding Creek Estuary departing year-round from Fort Bragg. Get your tickets here!
Pennyroyal Farm is an excellent place to visit when heading back down CA-128. There’s truly something for everyone at this farm. There’s a creamery, a vineyard, and a farmstead. Farm Tours are available and end with a cheese and wine tasting. Kids are also included in the tasting and are offered grape juice of Pinot Noir and Gewürztraminer. You’ve got to stop here. Everything we tried was amazing! Book your tour here.
The Solar Living Institute is a 12 acre solar-powered center for sustainable living in Mendocino County. Take the family on a self-guided tour around the property and see the various demonstrations on-site. It’s a wonderful way to learn about the different ways to be more self sufficient.
This is a fun activity we like to do when visiting a new town. We like to try all the different coffee shops. Most will have offerings for the kids, too. Hot cocoa is usually the fave! Mendocino has a good variety of coffee shops in the area and many have organic options which I love! Here are a few we especially enjoyed.
One of the main attractions in Mendocino is Glass Beach. Glass Beach is a beautiful beach filled with seaglass in MacKerricher State Park in Fort Bragg. The site was once a trash dump so broken bottles have been transformed into pretty little pieces of colorful seaglass. Take all the pictures you want, but remember to leave the glass so others can also enjoy it.
Jug Handle State Natural Reserve
If you’re on the hunt for a gorgeous ocean view, this is it. Jug Handle’s sandy beach is the perfect place for the kids to run and explore. It’s a short hike (maybe 10 minutes) to get from the parking lot to the beach. It’s a stunning beach to take the whole family.
*Some of the activities listed were hosted. All opinions are my own.