After you say, “I do,” it’s time to unplug and unwind, and there’s no better place to begin your journey as husband and wife than Mendocino County. Here, wine, romance, and coastal breezes are aplenty, and cozy country towns replace the city lights. So reconnect with nature—and each other—on the spectacular Northern California coast where you can relax and recharge together in tranquility.
Located on the Mendocino coast, The Elk Cove Inn & Spa in Elk offers a serene setting for couples to spend quiet time alone. Book a stay in a uniquely decorated guest room at this quaint, craftsman-style B&B. From cliffside cottages to oceanfront junior suites, couples have their pick of scenery and décor. While the communal dining area hosts a breakfast to die for and the spa offers a healing sanctuary with treatments designed for couples, the real treasure is found outdoors. The waterfront property boasts sweeping ocean views from its secluded locale atop a bluff and more than a mile of prime beach just steps away. Take a walk to the local market in downtown Elk and pack a s’mores survival kit for a quiet evening on the beach. Fire pits are available for guests who want to sip local varietals while they enjoy the ocean views and warm their toes by the fire. As you slip into deep conversation, or perfectly peaceful silence, don’t forget to keep an eye out for the wildlife that frequents the property—including deer that dare to come within steps of your front door.
Take a Drive:
Seek adventure in Anderson Valley, where a vibrant brewery and taproom—Anderson Valley Brewing Co.—and a plethora of tasting rooms offer ample opportunity to imbibe. At the valley’s center is Booneville, a former redwood logging community now heavily occupied by vineyards. The varied weather, elevation, and soil produce a range of flavorful Mendocino County grapes, though as a whole the area is known for its award-winning Pinot Noirs. In fact, Goldeneye Winery’s 2005 Pinot Noir was served at President Obama’s inaugural luncheon. No trip, however, is complete without a stop into Navarro Vineyards—located in nearby Philo—where Zinfandel and Pinot Noir-heavy Navarrouge is an award-winning choice.
If wine tasting isn’t on the agenda, the quaint downtown is still a desirable place to stop off of Highway 128. Filled with small shops, fine art and tasty treats, here you can get your hands on a piping-hot cup of coffee at Zubzub to heat things up, or cool it down with a scoop of ice cream in fun flavors at the same spot. The twisty two-lane road is also perfect for a drive to nowhere.
More to do:
The weather is almost always gorgeous in Mendocino, which means you can partake in outdoor exploration nearly every day of the year. From riding horseback along the beach to swinging a club at a local course, there’s no reason to stay indoors during your trip to the coast. So soak up the sunshine and get moving with bike tours, hiking trails, kayak rentals, and more. Whether you’re stepping foot into the Greenwood State Beach Visitor Center & Museum or strolling barefoot in the sand, every activity is dripping with romantic possibilities, especially when executed at sunset.