Mendocino, California

Mendocino, California

Mendocino is the most romantic seaside village in America. It celebrates a dreamy appeal out of place and time. The “place” is an isolated verdant promontory overlooking a wildly beautiful coastline. The “time” would be Victorian, since the whole village seems to be of whitewashed wooden buildings and tidy gardens unchanged from the 19th century. Not surprisingly, the town was settled in the 1850s by lumbermen from New England. After nearly a century, the last mill closed during the Depression. Mendocino’s demise was averted by artists and escapists attracted by the natural beauty and isolation of the area.

Today, Mendocino’s Yankee-Victorian relics and manicured gardens flourish. Weathered whitewashed structures house unique shops, galleries and gourmet restaurants. Charming bed-and-breakfast inns romance guests here to browse artistic keepsakes throughout the village; to explore headlands and redwood forests by canoe, bicycle, foot or car; or to seek tranquility in secluded coves and inspiring overlooks.