With Indian Summer in full swing, now is the best time to hop in the car and head north for Little River, a charming stopover three miles south of Mendocino.
Once there, you're in no-filter-necessary sunsets, sea cave kayaking, and yes, your very own pet llama.
Perched above the Pacific along Highway 1, the charming Little River Inn promises porches perfect for watching sunsets, convenient access to outdoor recreation and affordable package deals — including one that includes a guided llama trek.
From $130/night. 7901 N. Highway 1, Little River (707-937-5942)
With complimentary breakfast delivered daily, evening hors d’oeuvres paired with local wines, and Van Damme State Park in its backyard, the Inn at Cobbler’s Walk puts a modern twist on the traditional bed and breakfast. Rooms, suites, and cottages offer thoughtful extras including wood-burning fireplaces, jet tubs, and private decks.
From $150/night. 8200 N. Highway 1, Little River (707-937-0088)
Van Damme State Park serves as the backdrop for Little River, a former logging town that’s now a cluster of hotels, cafes and homes overlooking the ocean. Trails here wind through fern-filled canyons and pygmy pine and cypress trees that stand less than eight feet tall.
8001 N. Highway 1, Little River (707-937-5804)
Dry land not your thing? Book with Kayak Mendocino to paddle past sea stars and harbor seals before exploring sea caves and cliffs. Or, if you're feeling adventurous, book a kayak surfing lesson and learn to ride the waves.
Van Damme Beach State Park CA-1, Little River (707-937-0700)
Snag a window seat at sunset at Wild Fish, a lively little seafood restaurant set on a narrow strip of land between Highway 1 and the ocean. The menu changes seasonally, with salmon peaking now and Dungeness crab coming right around the corner.
7750 N. Highway 1, Little River (707-754-7555)
It’s not fancy, but the Little River Market draws rave reviews for its fresh and affordable sandwiches, soups, and snacks. The roadside deli doubles as a convenience store that carries all the essentials for an afternoon picnic or day-long hike.
7746 N. Highway 1, Little River (707-937-5133)