The Sea Ranch, California, is a unique coastal community, just right for a weekend getaway. Sea Ranch resident Sophia Habl Mitchell tells us about her perfect day.
About 100 miles north of San Francisco is a community called The Sea Ranch. It’s the perfect weekend getaway from the hustle and bustle of the Bay Area.
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I first started coming to The Sea Ranch as a vacationer and now I am lucky enough to call this place home. Here are some of my favorite ways to spend the day.
For a sweet treat and delicious baked goods, I start my morning off with a trip to Two Fish Baking Company. People line up for their sticky buns, fresh muffins, and coffee cake, and they often sell out early. They make one of the best chai lattes around.
I pick up a loaf of fresh bread to enjoy later in the day as well as a box of their granola to savor once I get back to the “real world”.
The Sea Ranch is bounded by the Pacific Ocean on the west and the Gualala River and forested hills on the east. With over 40 miles of trails it is a paradise for walkers. I put on some comfy shoes and a jacket and head out for a stroll on the Bluff Trail.
The trail affords breath-taking views of the ocean and walkers are likely to see seals and osprey.
One of my favorite parts about the trail is the hidden nooks with rustic logs as benches where you can grab a seat, enjoy the scenery or cuddle with your sweetie. The trail extends nearly ten miles along the bluffs.
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While on our walk, we take some time to enjoy the unique architecture style that dominates The Sea Ranch community. The homes are often simple in shape with dramatic roof-lines and a weathered appearance (Sea Ranch Chapel pictured below).
All development at The Sea Ranch is guided by architectural design guidelines where houses are to be designed to blend into the landscape.
We’ve packed our swimsuits and enjoy some laps at the Del Mar Recreation Center or Ohlson Recreation Center. They also have saunas where you can relax.
Time seems to melt away at The Sea Ranch, so before I know it, my mind is thinking about dinner.
If I’m cooking, I’ll pick up provision at Surf Super, a market in Gualala, just a few miles north of The Sea Ranch. If I feel like leaving the cooking to others, I’ll look for one of the local restaurants. The Black Point Grill is at the Sea Ranch Lodge (www.searanchlodge.com) and was recently remodeled.
Another great spot for a meal out is St. Orres, located north of The Sea Ranch. You get to dine in a beautiful building with a Russian-inspired dome. They break out candles at night and it’s a lovely experience.
After dinner, we build a fire in the fire place and cozy up with a good book, tackle a puzzle or continue the conversation that was started over dinner. I’ll fall asleep to the sounds of crashing Pacific waves and the rustle of wind in the trees.
Lodging is available at the Sea Ranch Lodge, but many people opt for a vacation rental home. From cozy cabins in the trees to designer homes right on the ocean bluff, there is something for everyone.
There are several rental management companies that handle vacation rentals. I have had good experiences with Coasting Home and Sea Ranch Vacation Rentals.
Sophia Habl Mitchell owns an environmental consulting firm and lives at The Sea Ranch with her husband, retired racer greyhound and sweet old cat. When not relaxing on the beautiful northern California coast, she enjoys traveling to other continents. She can be found online at searanchrambles.blogspot.com.
Have you visited The Sea Ranch, or had a perfect day in a gorgeous coastal getaway somewhere else in the world? Tell us about it in the comments below!