Mendocino: August 2008 Archives

Wine Country Itinerary: Mendocino Coast

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By Courtney Cochran

The drive is just three hours north of San Francisco, but it might as well be a century back in time. Sometimes called "The Lost Coast" since it was largely cut off from the modern world until the mid Nineteenth Century, Mendocino's hauntingly romantic North Coast is home today to long stretches of pristine wilderness, a host of welcoming inns and B&Bs, renowned restaurants and - yes - wineries and tasting rooms that make the most of this spectacular stretch of California coastline. 

Our suggested itinerary takes you northwards on Highway 1 from the town of Mendocino to just north of historic Fort Bragg, and includes a midday pit stop for lunch.  And while the majority of Mendocino's more than 50 wineries are to be found further inland, the coast is where you'll find California's only oceanside winery as well as a handful of tasting rooms in coastal towns fit to bursting with Victorian-era charm and architecture.  But take note: In keeping with the slow pace of the region, the dramatic cliffs and myriad turns along winding Highway 1 make travel here slow by necessity.  Happily, it's a region that welcomes lingering, something you'll find all too easy to do once you get there. 

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