One of the best times of year to have a true Humboldt experience is in Autumn. From late September to early December the trees turn bright, crowds disappear, low-season rates kick in, and the looming winter rains have yet to start. Californians can save money, save time, and make wonderful memories close to home with these perfect Northern California fall getaways. Plan your next stay-ish vacation with these great tips…
The redwood coast seems like a world away but it’s really only a few short hours from all the hustle & bustle, making it perfect for Northern California fall getaways. San Francisco Bay area, Santa Rosa, and Redding may have all the perks of the city, however the not so remote stretches of the Northern California coast offer the peace and solace only the redwoods can provide.
This autumn get away from it all and experience these unique Northern California Fall Getaways:
Redwood National & State Parks
Visiting Redwood National & State Parks during fall comes with some serious benefits. These parks receive the majority of their visitors in the summertime. So for those seeking more solitude, it is the autumn & winter months that provide a much quieter seasonal experience.
Giant trees, fall foliage, and trails galore. Cathedral Trail in Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park is one of the best options for viewing spectacular old-growth redwoods. Lady Bird Johnson Nature Trail in Redwood National Park is a stunning 1.4 mile trail suitable for any fitness level.
Peaceful Creekside Cabin for two, located next to Redwoods National Park, is the perfect home base for exploring all that the parks have to offer. While at Peaceful Cabin, enjoy the warm pellet stove fireplace and the absolutely stunning natural setting.
Avenue of the Giants
While the parks provide excellent displays of fall foliage it is the iconic ‘Avenue of the Giants’ that will get you a glimpse of some of the most outstanding fall colors. This 31-mile section of old Highway 101 winds through Humboldt Redwoods State Park. Lined with Bigleaf Maples, this convenient route promises a showy display of gold and orange shades each year.
Stay at the lovely Cream City Cottage in the nearby Victorian Village of Ferndale (voted one of America’s prettiest towns) to be within close proximity to California’s magnificent Avenue of the Giants. Ferndale is a surprising trip back in time and is the perfect destination for a fun family vacations, rugged outdoor adventures or romantic Northern California fall getaways.
Halloween on the Redwood Coast is something rather unique. Haunted Houses tend to take on a new form here. By far, one of Humboldt’s most twisted and horrific traditions is The Haunted Kinetic Lab, an annual guided freak show tour at the Kinetic Sculpture Lab in the little town of Arcata, CA. Taking place during the week leading up to Halloween, this is a hair-raising experience not to be missed.
For those traveling to the area with little ones, the areas expansive pumpkin patches and corn mazes are great alternative to the Haunted Lab. Warren Creek Farm has 25 varieties of pumpkins growing, including the bright red-orange Cinderellas. Travel through their giant corn maze and out into the pumpkin patch to choose your own pumpkin, or just drop into the farm stand to choose from pre-picked pumpkins, squash, beans and potatoes fresh from the organic farm. Be sure to take in the breeze, the pastures and the towering sunflowers while you are there.
Trick-or-treating on the Arcata Plaza provides another family-friendly holiday experience during Northern California fall getaways. Downtown streets close to traffic so families can safely enjoy trick-or-treating at the plazas participating stores. Kids also get the opportunity to join in a fun little Halloween Parade around the square so they can show of their costumes!
Downtown Arcata is definitely something else come Halloween. There are usually tons of parties and events going on and of course lots of of late night shenanigans taking places all throughout town as well. Definitely a fun and interesting time to visit Arcata. Rent Holly Yashi Hideaway to be perfectly located, walking distance to downtown Arcata and all the action.
Pack lightly. Hop in the car. Take a little drive. Arrive at your destination. Remember, it is not always about how far we travel, it’s the memories we make, even when closer to home. While far off exotic locations do indeed sound nice, sometimes a little staycation is all we need for a quick recharge.
Author: Dawn Marie
Travel Passionista, Marketing Maven, and Guest Contributor.