Our human way of life changed so dramatically this year. The pandemic arrived and we all experienced a tectonic shift in how humans live on the Earth. First it was time to quarantine and everyone stayed in their home except for essential activities. Then we started working from home and with schools closed, using our homes for child care too. People once used to having fun and exploring life now found that their existence was contained in a little box.
Fortunately, some of the early restrictions have lifted. We are now smarter about moving about and there’s a tremendous desire to travel and be able to enjoy the beauty of life again. When you go on a road trip, it’s helpful to have a great car. If you are looking to sell your existing vehicle and upgrade your road trip ride you can use a free window sticker tool to reproduce an original Monroney Sticker. This works for most vehicles newer than model year 2013 and it will show you all the packages, options and trim features on both your car and the car you are going to buy.
If you want to experience the incredible beauty of Northern California without running into big crowds, Gualala (population 2,093) is the perfect place to start. Your journey begins as you leave the congestion of the Bay area behind. Wander along Highway 116 from Guerneville to Jenner and enjoy the road as it winds along the Russian River. From there, you head north at Jenner and magnificent vistas greet you as you follow Highway 1 along the ocean bluffs. When you reach Gualala, you can reward yourself with an amazing ocean front suite complete with wooden deck, jacuzzi tub and stunning views. The gentle cadence of the waves and the deep jetted water of the bath will relax and soothe in these times. Gualala is a place where time truly stands still and every moment is filled with the sweet rhythm and beauty of the ocean shore.
Mendocino and Fort Bragg, California
As you journey north from Gualala, you’ll drive just 60 miles along the coast before you reach Mendocino and Fort Bragg. Mendocino is part artist colony and part picture-postcard delight. There are wonderful stores to visit, a great bakery and coffee shop and delicious food in this seaside village. At the edge of this quaint town you will be able to walk or drive along the ocean bluffs and see the most magnificent sunsets. Fort Bragg feels more like a working town. There are miles of beaches to explore and if you go down to the harbor, you’ll see fishing boats and be able to enjoy great seafood too. Locals and visitors alike enjoy the summer farmer’s market. You can overnight there or book a beautiful room at one of Mendocino’s wonderful B&Bs.
Humboldt Redwoods State Park, California
After your time in Gualala and the Mendocino area your body will be totally relaxed and your soul blissed. It’s now time to visit the amazing California redwoods. Just two hours north of Fort Bragg is Humboldt Redwoods State Park. The park includes 17,000 acres of ancient coastal redwoods and is the largest contiguous stand of redwoods in the world. It also includes the Avenue of the Giants, a 31-mile road that is said to be the most beautiful forest road in the world. These magnificent redwoods are often thousands of years old. As you stand amidst the towering, 300-foot-tall giants you feel their sacred majesty in your body, heart and soul. At 362 feet tall and some 13 feet wide, the giant Rockefeller Tree will take your breath away. You’ll find yourself gazing up in awe and reverence within the redwood groves, for you are standing in nature’s holy cathedral.