The Seaside Village of Mendocino: Your Weekend Getaway Guide

I was in Mendocino back in September (read that post here). It was a great trip that had me exploring Mendocino County, a place that I was still a little unfamiliar with.

This time around, I wanted my weekend getaway to feel a bit more relaxed. Since I was staying right in the village of Mendocino, I thought it would make the most sense to focus on that. I want to capture everything that this little seaside town has to offer.

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WHAT TO DO IN MENDOCINO

EXPLORE THE VILLAGE…

By foot, bike, or car. It’s small enough that you can walk through the entire village quite easily.

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Head to Main Street first, where you’ll find all sorts of little shops and restaurants. A few places you should definitely check out:

Gallery Bookshop and Bookwinkles: I must say, I absolutely love walking through bookstores. Which is why I was happy to get lost in a book in this charming shop. Also, I don’t know what ‘bookwinkles’ means, but I like it! 🙂

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Mendocino Jams and Preserves: If you’re in Mendocino in the fall, this is the perfect little shop to pop into. Pick up some jams, chutneys, and coffee/tea for the upcoming holiday festivities.

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Mendocino Country Shop: If you’re looking for vintage or hand-crafted items, this place is for you. The exterior itself will make you want to check out what’s inside. Here, you’ll find soaps, flour sack towels, vintage jars and vases, and more, all from local vendors. 

Sallie Mac: A cute shop full of artisan gifts and home accessories. You’ll find bath and body products, French linens, ceramics, and more in this delight store. There’s a cobblestone path that leads to an outdoor garden shop that you must check out as well.

Honey + RoCheck out this little shop if you’re looking for home and clothing accessories. You’ll find unique scarves, burlap bags, wooden utensils, dainty gold jewelry, and more!

DRIVE OUT TO THE HEADLANDS…

First off, check out the trails that you can find directly from the village of Mendocino. They’ll either take you down to a beach, or you can follow them out along the rugged coast.

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I didn’t explore these trails, but I did go out to the headlands, which is a quick 4-minute drive from the center of the village.

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My favorite spot is the pullout on Little Lake Street, just before the sharp curve onto Hessler Drive. Stop there and check out the views. On a sunny day, the water is this magical color blue.

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It’s also an amazing spot to head just before dinner when the sun is setting. On this particular trip, I caught an adorable couple enjoying the view with a glass of champagne in hand. Le sigh.

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WHERE TO STAY

If you want to say in the village, definitely book a room at The Blue Door Inn (part of Lark Hotels).

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You’ll find the inn just as you would expect to from its name. It’s a white Victorian house with a brilliant blue door (and a white picket fence to add to the charm).

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The interior reminded me of a modern version of Victorian charm. All the rooms in the house are full of soothing cream and gray tones. The shared areas, which are the living room and dining room, are quite cozy. Add the coffee bar and the fireplace into the equation, and you’ll never want to leave! Especially on a crisp fall day on the Mendocino coast.

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Through French doors, you’ll find a patio with a gazebo out back. It’s a great spot to nestle up with a book and a glass of wine. Down the patio stairs, you’ll find a path that leads into a little garden.

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My room, which was the Deluxe Queen Water View, was quite comfy and snug. From the bay windows, there’s a peek of the ocean, and the two armchairs below made it a nice nook to curl up with a book at night.

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The queen bed had the softest sheets I’ve ever felt. It made it incredibly hard to get out of bed in the morning. Especially when you have the fireplace keeping the room warm. Seriously, I could have stayed in bed all day.

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The bathroom has modern amenities. There’s a wooden vanity with a large mirror and backlights. You’ll also get to enjoy the rainfall shower and/or a deep soaking tub. Plus, there’s a fan that keeps the bathroom warm with just a hit a button.

Other amenities you get with your stay:

  • A welcome treat and a handwritten note from the staff.
  • The evenings, there’s a “happy hour’ where you can enjoy an appetizer, a glass of wine, and the company of other quests.
  • In the morning, you’ll get a light tap on the door signaling that breakfast is here. You’ll find a basket of goodies at the door waiting for you. During my stay, the menu included orange juice, a pumpkin cream cheese muffin, apple cinnamon overnight oats, a chia seed parfait, and a roasted tomato and goat cheese frittata with potato wedges. Yum!
  • Plus, the majority of the food for breakfast came prepared in little mason jars. So cute!

There are a lot of things I really loved about Blue Door Inn, and I’d definitely stay there again next time I’m in town. Especially since the parent company, Blue Door Group, has more inns in the village, including JD House and Packard House. It might be up there as one of my favorite stays so far.

WHERE TO EAT

During my stay, I had lunch at the Mendocino Hotel. First off, this hotel was built in 1878, so upon entry into the hotel, you’re taken back into time.

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The lobby has this old rust-red wallpaper, oriental carpets, an amazing old fireplace, and antique furniture.

Explore this part of the hotel for awhile, and then head to the Garden Room for lunch. I got lucky and found a spot by the windows where you can eat under a canopy of trees. I ordered a glass of wine and the French onion soup.

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For dinner, I went to Flow Restuarant. It’s a great spot because it’s above street level, so you get great views of the ocean (especially at sunset). My favorite part (and a surprise) was that they had live music playing, which made dinner extra special. I ordered the mushroom risotto. Their plates are large, so come hungry!

Need other suggestions? The Blue Door Inn has a great list you can check out here. They also recommended Patterson’s, which is an Irish Pub that apparently has great fish and chips.


Having visited Mendocino a few times nowone of the things I love about this part of the world is that it can be both adventurous or super chill. It’s really whatever you’re looking for. You’ll find it here.

For me, I had such a nice, relaxing weekend during my most recent stay in Mendocino. A lot of that is a credit to my lovely stay at the Blue Door InnIt was a much-needed chill-out weekend, so thank you for having me! 

Let’s go places,
Sarah

All photos on this blog are mine. Feel free to share but please credit me with a link back to the blog. Much appreciated and thank you for your support!

I have collaborated with Blue Door Inn for this post. All opinions are mine.

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