After leaving San Francisco, the Pacific Coast Highway snakes north along the coast up to Mendocino County, which is rich in microbreweries, redwood forests and rocky Pacific Ocean views. Mendocino is the biggest town in the north and home to Fort Bragg. The area is very pet friendly and in addition to finding lots of dog-friendly lodging options, many local restaurants, beaches and other activities welcome pets.
Hill House Inn
This country inn is on a bluff overlooking the Mendocino headlands and is surrounded by Victorian gardens, open fields and signature redwood water towers. Guest rooms offer garden or ocean views, and the inn is located on the outskirts of the commercial district. Dogs are not only welcome at the Hill House Inn, but the inn also often runs specials, allowing pets to stay for free. The usual rate is $25 for the first night and $15 per night for additional nights. The inn serves a complimentary continental breakfast and wireless Internet is available throughout. As of October 2010, rates began at $141 per night.
Stanford Inn by the Sea
Rated Four Diamonds by AAA, the Stanford Inn by the Sea is an eco-friendly rustic lodge that offers good access to hiking trails around Mendocino. The inn is on a bluff overlooking Mendocino Bay. There are several resident dogs at the inn, and traveling dogs are welcome at a rate of $45 for the first dog and $22.50 for additional pets. The fee covers the length of the stay. The innkeepers provide dog treats, stainless steel food and water bowls and plastic sheets to protect guest rooms. The lodge, which serves an organic breakfast daily and has a wellness center/spa, has rustic rooms with knotted pine walls and wood-burning fireplaces. Complimentary wireless Internet is available throughout. As of October 2010, rates began at $211 per night.
Inn at Schoolhouse Creek
In Little River, the Inn at Schoolhouse Creek is a 9-acre compound with cottages and rooms tucked into the forest or overlooking a bluff. Dogs are welcome and receive a basket of treats and a Frisbee for use in the leash-free meadow or on the beach at nearby Buckhorn Cove (leash-free). There is a $50 pet fee for the length of the stay for the first dog and $25 for a second dog. Guest rooms are individually decorated, some in country-inn style, others more contemporary. The inn serves a complimentary hot breakfast and there is wireless Internet access throughout. As of October 2010, room rates began at $175 per night.
Little River Inn
Also located in Little River, this high-end property has a main house with hotel-style rooms and small cottages that sit right on a cliff overlooking the ocean. This Victorian-style inn has luxury amenities ranging from waterfront porches to fireplaces to whirlpool tubs. Dogs are welcome and receive a complimentary treat, special towel for clean up, water and food dishes, and plastic sheets to protect furniture. The inn has designated on-leash walking areas. Up to two dogs per room are welcome at a rate of $25 per pet per night. As of October 2010, guest rooms began at $130 in the inn and ocean view cottages began at $290.
- Pacific Ocean image by K. Zavtrikovaite from Fotolia.com