Ciao Bambino / Six Family Adventures in Mendocino

Written by Kristi Marcelle

Mendocino County has coastline and climate on its side and a laid back attitude that welcomes families to try something different. A four-hour drive north of San Francisco, Mendocino attracts visitors looking for a touch of the wild with creature comforts nearby.

For my family, that meant we could explore wine country, hike, visit lighthouses or horseback ride during the day and return to the ultra family-friendly Little River Inn in the afternoon to sip the day’s finds or watch the sun set over the Pacific Ocean. Our days were full of discovery and a four day weekend flew by with so much left to do for the next visit.

Things to Do in Mendocino with Kids

Mist and fern-covered trees line the hiking trails at Van Damme State Park

Hiking Van Damme State Park

There’s a direct path from Little River Inn to the park which has a visitors center and miles of hiking trails. The forest here feels like a colder version of a tropical jungle with ferns and vines growing over fallen trees ala Jurassic Park. Dress warmly as it’s progressively colder as you hike further on the trail.

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