The county of Mendocino contains many interesting cities and towns which make up a tapestry of experiences, sights, and sounds that the traveler will enjoy as she or he explores the Mendocino coast.
Fort Bragg, for example, is one city. With a population of less than 8,000 inhabitants, this town relies heavily on commercial fishing for its local economy. In times past it was a military installation and many artifacts and even some buildings still date back to the time of the original installation. History buffs will enjoy the opportunities to explore the footprints of yesterday's generations. While you are there, do not forget to visit the Guest House Museum which houses many of the historic documents and smaller artifacts that attest to the city's unique, and sometimes bloody, history.
If you are an art lover, especially when it comes to portraits of Native Americans, then the name Grace Carpenter Hudson will undoubtedly ring a bell. As you travel in the county of Mendocino, you will be able to visit her birthplace, Potter Valley. This area has a reputation for being lush, having fertile soil, and housing cattle. Did you know that the famous horse Seabiscuit, owned by Charles Howard, was often taken to the owner's ranch in Potter Valley? What a wonderful place to visit!
The artists among you will rejoice at the thought of visiting the county of Mendocino, especially when it comes to taking a look at the town of Mendocino. Granted, there are less than 900 full time residents present, yet the moment you step out of your car and breathe in the fresh sea air, hear the rush of the waters against the coastline, and see the dark blue and white foamy caps of the waves, you know why artists all over the world travel to this location to paint, to be inspired, and simply to just make it a stop on their way to the San Francisco Bay Area. Originally this little town was established as a logging community, but soon this industry dried up and many of the inhabitants left to look elsewhere for work. The artists, however, never left and instead the word spread, and these days Mendocino is a famous address amongst art communities everywhere.
As you can see, the county of Mendocino is home to some incredible vacation spots that may not necessarily show up on your tour guide. Sadly, many California tour guides and travel brochures are so caught up with the glitz and glamour of Hollywood and the bohemian aspects of the San Francisco lifestyle to truly pay homage to the rich history and culture that other areas have to offer. Do not be fooled by the failure of many pamphlets to designate these picturesque towns and cities as tourist traps; instead, come for a visit and leave inspired and invigorated!