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Exploring the Northern California Coast

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Just recently I took a road trip along the Northern California Coast. I have been down the coast starting from San Francisco to San Diego, but have never ventured up and was really excited to see new areas and explore.

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There is so much beauty in California that there really is no bad choice in where you want to spend your time, but I will say that the northern part, up into Oregon stole my heart. First of all it’s less crowded, cheaper rates on hotels, wonderful food options and more shaded trees and curvy roads through the mountains.

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There really is so much to see and do while heading up the coast that I do suggest, if you are going to wing your trip and just drive, like we did, that you secure your hotel in whatever town you want to spend the night in ahead of time, especially during the summertime. The hotels fill up quickly as they are typically smaller hotels, and the cabins or cottages on the beach or in the redwoods need to be booked at least 72 hours in advance. Some also require a 2 night minimum stay, so it’s best to keep that in mind. Also, make sure to bring sweatshirts and pants as the weather is always a lot cooler on the coast, no matter where you are in California, especially the northern part.

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If you are planning a trip, here are some of my recommendations on some great points-of-interests to stop and see along your journey.

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Sequoia Park Zoo - Eureka, CA

Founded in 1907, the Sequoia Park Zoo is the oldest zoo in California. Dedicated to inspiring understanding and respect for the natural world and educating the community about the importance of wildlife conservation, the Sequoia Park Zoo is home to over 200 vertebrates and more than 1,700 invertebrates. If you are looking for fun things to do in Eureka with kids, visit the Sequoia Park Zoo.

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Trinidad Bay Eatery & Gallery- Trinidad, CA

Clam chowder is always a MUST while on the coast and if you are looking for the best while driving, I recommend you stop in the small town of Trinidad and try the clam chowder at Trinidad Bay Eatery & Gallery. While you’re there, stop by Salty’s Bait Shop and check out their shirts. It’s a small selection but the material is incredibly soft, you’ll just have to pick one up for yourself.

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Wedding Rock at Patrick’s Point State Park- Trinidad, CA

The view from this very short hike is just picturesque. There are 360 degree views and it’s the perfect place to stop and take it all in. I also recommend if you’re looking for the perfect place to take a photo of your family or maybe of just you and your spouse, that you make this your spot.

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