Your Ultimate Guide to Mendocino National Forest

“Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” -Albert Einstein

Mendocino is a nature lover’s paradise. Surround yourself with lush greenery, an abundance of wildlife, and thrilling outdoor adventures. The best way to do that is to visit Mendocino National Forest in Northern California. If you’re planning on exploring the park, make sure to grab a copy of our complimentary Vacation Guide. It’s a handy list of the best restaurants, attractions, and entertainment in Mendocino.

About Mendocino National Forest

Explore 100 miles and dozens of ecosystems when you visit Mendocino National Forest. This magical land climbs from sea level to 7,000-foot-tall mountains. There are numerous ways to explore this diverse wildlife area. You can even bring your furry family member along for the hike, as long it’s kept on a leash. Discover the best that Mother Nature has to offer when you take part in the many outdoor recreational activities in the park. Or, hike through the different ecosystems and wildlife areas to get different perspectives on California’s habitats.

Outdoor Recreation at the Mendocino National Forest

There are so many activities to enjoy in nearly one million acres of nature. Imagine unplugging from the world and connecting with the great outdoors. Walk the winding trails up the mountain, or go boating or swimming in the serene rivers.

The park offers tons of amazing trails for backpacking and day hiking. You can also go fishing in the lakes, ponds, and rivers. Just make sure you get a California fishing license from the Department of Fish and Game.

Go horseback riding to get a fantastic view of the forest while experiencing fantastic mountain trail riding. There are nearly 30 scenic trails to choose from for horse riding in Mendocino National Forest.

Or, put the wheels in full force and go up the mountain on your bike! Biking in Mendocino National Forest is a popular activity, and you can choose from many different routes. Just make sure to avoid the prohibited trails. Some of the rocky trails have loose limbs, rocks, and steep drop-offs, so it’s best to stay safe!

Getting outside is the best way to forget about any worries and focus on spending quality time with your loved ones.

Picnicking at Mendocino National Forest

When it’s time for lunch, unpack your picnic basket for a quiet meal in the forest. There are several picnic areas with gorgeous views. Enjoy your lunch in a beautiful meadow or fuel up in Rattlesnake Firefighter Overlook for an in-depth history lesson about a fire that ravaged the forest in 1953.

Make sure you read the signs before stopping for lunch because some areas prohibit picnicking.

Unwind at Inn at Schoolhouse Creek in Mendocino

After a day of exploring the highs and lows of Mendocino National Forest, relax at Inn at Schoolhouse Creek. Our Inn is a little less than two hours from Mendocino National Forest but it’s totally worth the drive! Our pet-friendly accommodations feature luxury amenities, including breathtaking ocean views, gas fireplaces, and upscale furnishings. 

Stay in our delightful Thyme Cottage and enjoy a warm cup of coffee from the comfort of your deck, surrounded by the garden. This private cottage is the perfect, tranquil setting for your romantic getaway. Unwind after a day of hiking the mountains of Mendo and relax in the jetted, two-person hot tub. Adventure meets tranquility here in Mendocino. Check our availability and book your California getaway today!