Travel scenic Highway 1 along the coast to take in the breathtaking views, the Gualala Hotel, and embrace nature in Gualala Point Regional Park, where trails lead to oceanfront cliffs overlooking a sandy beach.
Explore numerous parks, beaches, and coastal villages such as Point Arena, Albion, and Little River. In Point Arena, look for the historic lighthouse.
Mendocino, a historic Cape Cod-style enclave, doubles as the New England town of 'Cabot Cove' in the television show Murder, She Wrote. The entire village of Mendocino, established by New England whalers, is on the National Register of Historic Places. Fine shops, galleries, and snug inns abound in this renowned artists' colony.
Board the Skunk Train in nearby Fort Bragg - named for an 1855 fort built to protect residents from hostile natives. Originally intended for logging, the train now carries passengers through 40 miles of awe-inspiring scenery to inland Willits and back. Don't miss the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens on 47 acres overlooking the Pacific. At Noyo Harbor, charter a sport-fishing boat or catch a whale-watching cruise. From either Fort Bragg or Mendocino, stroll the headlands looking for seals. And, November to April, look for migrating California gray whales.
In Willits, visit the Mendocino County Museum to see Native American basketry and vintage steam-powered logging and railroad equipment. South is Ukiah, a major new wine-producing region.