Enjoy the wild splendor of the Northern Californian coastline with a stay at an incredible Sea Ranch vacation rental. From whale watching to stargazing, Sea Ranch offers plenty of exciting things to do. The area’s commitment to unobtrusive architecture and wildlife-friendly practices makes it easy to feel close to nature. After you’ve spent some time exploring the beach and hiking the Sea Ranch trail system, check out these popular attractions.

1. Attend a Winemaker Dinner at Sea Ranch Lodge

Located in the heart of Sonoma County, Sea Ranch sits close to many of the area’s most innovative wineries, and Sea Ranch Lodge offers regular dinner series focused on meeting the vintners and tasting their wares. Enjoy a menu developed to fit perfectly with the night’s tastings plus a gorgeous oceanfront view. If you’re a beer lover, be sure to check out the lodge’s brewmaster dinners, too.

2. Meander Through the Art Collection at Studio 391

Count Studio 391 as one of your must-see attractions if you love art. Featuring a large collection of photographs of the surrounding area plus paintings, sculpture, and works in mixed media from both established artists and the best new talent, this gallery is the perfect place for enjoying a relaxed afternoon. To extend your art tour, visit Dolphin Gallery’s eclectic collection of fine arts and crafts, and then head to Alinder Gallery to view stunning photos of people and scenery from across the United States.

3. Get Your Game On at Sea Ranch Golf Links

This gorgeous golf course uses traditional links-style planning to incorporate the seaside landscape into the flow of its 18 holes. Spend a morning enjoying the ocean breeze while relaxing through the front nine holes or the entire course. If you’re a beginner, the course offers instruction plus a driving range and practice putting green. Stop in at the pro shop for any last-minute golfing needs, or enjoy an after-round drink at the clubhouse.

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4. Find Out About Local Indigenous Culture at Gualala Point Regional Park

Gualala Point Regional Park is a great place to hike, fish, and explore the sandy beaches, but the highlight of any trip to the park is a stop in at the Visitor’s Center. This large building features unique environmentally friendly construction and houses many exhibits about Native American culture as well as local wildlife and ecosystems. The staff is knowledgeable and ready to answer your questions, and there is a special children’s area with hands-on exhibits for the youngest visitors.

5. Shop for Souvenirs at The Boutique and Spindrift Gallery

Find that special something to spark the best memories of your getaway with a trip to The Boutique. This Sea Ranch shop offers many locally produced items including jewelry, home accessories, and toys. Pick up a game to take back to your vacation home for an evening of family fun, or browse the store’s selection of Sea Ranch branded clothing to round out your vacation wardrobe. Art lovers should be sure to take a peek into the nearby Spindrift Gallery to see the work of local artists and perhaps purchase a piece to bring home.

6. Savor Local Specialties at Black Point Grill

For a special meal and a gorgeous view, make reservations at the Black Point Grill and ask for solarium seating. The menu varies seasonally to highlight locally available produce, and the extensive wine list features rare selections from local wineries. Although the dinner menu tends toward the upscale with many offerings suitable for gourmet palates, the Black Point Grill is welcoming to your entire family, with a special children’s menu with more basic fare and puzzles to keep your youngsters entertained.

7. Learn More About the Varied Coastal Environment With Unbeaten Path Hiking Tours

Sign up for a tour with Unbeaten Path Hiking Tours, and let an expert teach you more about the local flora and fauna as you hike the Sea Ranch trails. Tour locations include many less-traveled areas, and the tour guides are happy to incorporate your personal interests into their itinerary. Consider a focus on local architecture, marine ecology, bird watching, or photography for awesome memories of your Sea Ranch vacation.

8. Tour Sea Ranch Chapel

For a stunning example of how Sea Ranch architecture works with the natural environment, spend an hour or two exploring Sea Ranch Chapel and its grounds. This nondenominational church is open to the public most days of the year and was created with local materials to enhance the natural beauty of the area. Its wing-shaped roof lets the ocean winds blow freely, and artistic touches, including sea-themed stained glass windows and mosaics, are sure to please any art lovers in your crew.

9. Visit the Peace Obelisk at Timber Cove Resort

Although you may be able to view the 93-foot-tall Peace Obelisk from your Sea Ranch vacation rental, it is well worth the short drive down the coast to see this marvel up close. Built by Benjamin Bufano in 1962, this stylized representation of the Madonna and Child is the sculptor’s statement for world peace. The monument is only a short walk from the parking area at Timber Cover Resort and is open to the public. While you’re visiting the resort, stop in for lunch at the Coast Kitchen. The eatery offers patio seating with an ocean view, and its menu focuses on organic, local foods.

10. Step Back in Time at Fort Ross State Historic Park

If you’re interested in learning more about the local history or simply want another fantastic view of the Pacific, head to Fort Ross State Historic Park. This attraction includes historic Russian buildings, windmills, and a stockade to take you back in time to the early 1800s when Russia held this site as a remote outpost. Be sure to stop in the visitor center and museum for more information about the site’s historical roots, and then take some time exploring the natural wonders of the park, including tide pools, stretches of pristine beach, and plenty of hiking trails for all ability levels.

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