Sea Ranch, CA

Memorial Day weekend spent with good friends, featuring a not so false fire drill, lots of pretty hikes and a really heated game of Monopoly. Lucky for us, Sea Ranch is a mere 2 hours from San Francisco. That plus the spotty cell reception make it the perfect weekend getaway. If you plan on visiting, here are some things you need to know..

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WHERE TO STAY

While it is possible to book individual hotel rooms through The Sea Ranch Lodge, renting a home is the true magic of this place. For easy online booking, I suggest Sea Ranch RentalsTip: Make sure your rental includes linens, otherwise you'll need to pack your own. Also some units are pet friendly!

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WHERE TO EAT

Within the community of Sea Ranch there is literally 1 option for dinner. The Black Point Grill at Sea Ranch Lodge has a stunning view, so if you want to eat out make an early bird reservation for the best views.

My advice? Load up on groceries at The Surf Market in the nearby town of Gualala (10 minutes by car) and whip up something spectacular at your rental. If you get a craving for pizza Upper Crust is good. Not great, but good.  

For breakfast, Two Fish Baking Company is a true gem. Get there early for the best selection. They have a wide selection of baked goods (I'm coming back for the sticky buns. And the morning buns.) and breakfast calzones. Come back later in the day and pick up a baguette
for your cheese plate. Tip: Bread sells out quickly.You can call ahead and reserve a loaf.

If you fancy a ride, spend the day in Mendocino (An hour and thirty minutes by car). Trillium Cafe is an excellent choice for lunch (the chicken pot pie and kale caesar salad were tasty), though the service is a little slow. Stop at Good Life Cafe & Bakery to refuel with some coffee before the ride back to Sea Ranch.

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WHAT TO DO

There's not much to do here, and isn't that kind of the best? Plan to bring all those books and magazines you've been meaning to read, camp out in a comfy chair and get to it. If you're feeling restless, there's a heated lap pool and tennis courts. We loved hiking along the coast, checking out the seal pups and enjoying the stunning views.

If you're getting restless, Anderson Valley is 1.5 hours by car and boasts an impressive list of up and coming wineries and vineyards offering tours and tastings.

GOOD TO KNOW...

The drive up to Sea Ranch is no joke. If you suffer from motion sickness, I'd suggest loading up on some Dramamine. You'll thank me later.