Instagram

things to do along the northern california coast: visit victorian towns

things to do along the northern california coast

things to do along the northern california coast: visit beaches

things to do along the northern california coast: visit beaches

things to do along the northern california coast visit a lighthouse

things to do along the northern california coast: visit a lighthouse

visit beaches

things to do along the northern california coast: go for a drive

things to do along the northern california coast: go for a drive

things to do along the northern california coast: visit beaches

things to do along the northern california coast: visit beaches

things to do along the northern california coast: visit beaches

things to do along the northern california coast: visit beaches

things to do along the northern california coast: visit red tree forests

things to do along the northern california coast: visit red tree forests

things to do along the northern california coast: visit red tree forests

things to do along the northern california coast: visit red tree forests

things to do along the northern california coast: visit red tree forests


Last Summer, Dave and I had some really good friends invite us to their Fall wedding in Ferndale, California.   A sleepy little coastal town in northern California, just outside of Eureka, that makes you feel like you have gone back in time to the Victorian Era.  

There were so many reasons for us not to go.  But we are never ones to turn down a road trip up the northern California coast and love our friends too much not to be present on their special day.  So, we arranged for our moms to help take turns watching the littles and began planning our weekend wedding getaway!

To get to Ferndale, California, you have two options. 

1) Fly from SLC International Airport to the Sacramento or San Francisco International Airports (note: it's about $100 cheaper to fly to the Sacramento Airport!) and then grab a rental car to drive the remaining way to Ferndale.  

2) Fly from SLC International Airport to the Sacramento or San Francisco International Airports and then book a connecting flight on a smaller plane that would take you directly to Ferndale's tiny airport.

Since Dave and I had been dying to drive up Highway 1 on the northern California coast, we opted for options number one!  And I am so glad that we did!  Because I felt like we got way more out of our trip then we would have if we had flown directly to our location.

With so many things to see and do in northern California, it is the perfect place to go and mark a few things off of your travel bucket list.  Of course, summer is the best time to go to the northern California coast because that's when all seaside town completely open up for tourists.  But I'm a huge advocate for visiting places on their off season because you practically get everything to yourselves.  Which is just the way I like it!

So, if you want to make your own trip to northern California and drive up Highway 1 along the northern California coast, here is my personal guide on what to see and do along the way!



Things to Do in Northern California


1) Cyprus Tree Tunnel: Located in Point Reyes.  We stopped in Point Reyes to do some thrift store shopping.  But had no clue the Cyprus Tree Tunnel existed!  So we will definitely be making a trip back to see it!  A definite MUST SEE!

2) Mendocino Coast:  The entire drive up Highway 1 is breathtaking.  But the Mendocino coast is beyond anything you could imagine.  So make sure to pull off at one of the beaches here!

3) Lighthouses!: There are five that you can stop and see along Highway 1.  But one of my favorites was Point Montara Lighthouse because you can opt to stay there and you can see tons of sea lions lounging on the jagged coastal sea rocks below!

4) Bodega Bay: For all you movie buffs out there, this was the shooting location for Alfred Hitchcock's movie "The Birds".

5) Glass Beach:  Glass Beach is another place we didn't get to see on this particular trip.  But is definitely something we will be going back to see.  It is just what its name says it is a beach with a shoreline made of countless pieces of smooth glass.  

6) Black Sands Beach: Located just outside of Ferndale, Black Sands Beach with huge waves, bonfire pits, and black sand.

7) Ferndale, CA:  I'm guaranteed this is one of the cutest towns in all of America!  With quaint shops, Victorian buildings, and the coolest cemetery you've ever seen.  You will definitely want to stay at least one night here!  And if you do, here are some things you gotta do...

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit ferndale

things to do along the northern california coast: visit a beach

things to do along the northern california coast: visit a beach


NOTE: Everything on this list can also be seen in the video for this post!

a-Shop at all the stores on main street.
b-Visit the cemetery.  Seriously, you will die when you see it!  
c-Try everything on the menu at Humboldt Sweets.
d-Go on a walking tour of the town to see all of the amazing Victorian buildings and homes.

8) Legget, CA Drive-thru Tree:  Not only do you get to drive through a huge redwood tree, but you can also stop at a quaint gift shop, and walk on trails that weave through the redwood forest.

9) Garberville, CA: Where a ton of California's cannabis is grown and where you can see a ton of hippies.  Dave and seriously felt that we had been taken back in time to the 1970's!

Happy travels!




Things I never want to forget...

Dave falling on his butt as he walked down a steep and wet trail that led to one of the many beaches we stopped at.

Driving through clouds that were hugging Highway 1.

The amazing deep fried pickles we ate in Fort Bragg.

Almost hitting two large and very hairy pigs that were sauntering across the road.  Dave thinks they were domestic.  But I'm still convinced they were wild.

Having my breath taken away every time we drove into a new and very quaint coastal town.

Everything about Ferndale, California.

The awe-inspiring beauty of Black Sands Beach.

Finding our first whole sand dollar.

Almost getting wiped out by a wave in Fort Bragg.

Dave and I cooking our friends' wedding rehearsal dinner.

The smell of the cyprus trees and the damp feeling of the lingering ocean mist.

Realizing how much of a small town girl I really am and beginning to scheme how I can help my family achieve that lifestyle.

Forming an even closer relationship with Matt and Ali.  Our dear friends who were the entire reason we made this memorable trip!

Getting Dave to myself for three whole days!






Post a Comment