|Beautiful Northern California Coast at
Mendocino and Fort Bragg
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Beautiful Noyo Bay as viewed from the back window of North Cliff Hotel located at 1005 S Main St, Fort Bragg,
On August 1, 2017, we drove from San Francisco Bay area for 3-day tour of the Northern California Coastal
area at Mendocino and Fort Bragg.
The Noyo River flowing into the Noyo Bay on the left side (south side) of the view from the back window of the
North Cliff Hotel. Many fishing boats from Pacific Ocean and Noyo Bay come through this Noyo River to go into
Back in the late 1800s, Noyo Harbor was first established as a port for redwood logging and fishing. For over a
century, these were the primary industries in Fort Bragg.
On the July 4th weekend every year, Noyo harbor hosts the world's largest salmon BBQ festival as shown on
several pictures on the following Yelp website:
Many people are kayaking in Noyo River or on the Noyo Bay to experience the magic of Mendocino coast.
People can enjoy a leisurely paddle up the Noyo River for exploration and be entertained by harbor seals, sea
lions, river otters, coastal birds and deer feeding along the rivers edge.
But kayaking adventures along the rugged California coast with many sea stacks, small islands in various
shapes, sea caves, sea arches, and powerful surf can be very wild, challenging and exciting as shown by the
photos and movie in the following two websites:
Beautiful and rugged coast of Mendocino with towering bluffs, rocky shore, many sea stacks, small island, sea
caves and sea arches as viewed from Scenic Overlooks of Mendocino Headlands State Park.
Unfortunately, it was very foggy on August 1 and 2, 2017 such that the sky and the ocean were not blue when
we were there.
One of several massive sea arches along the rugged wild coast of Mendocino. The ever-present fog/mist rolls
in here most of the time.
However, on sunny days with no fog, the stunning views from several scenic overlooks of Mendocino Headlands
State Park can be seen on many photos at this website.
Some seals on this rock.
Zoom in for closer look of the seal.
Zoom in for a closer look of two seals.
We saw many sea gulls on this Goat Island on August 2, 2017.
However, in the spring and early summer seasons, very large number of seabirds are nesting on this Goat
Island here to lay eggs, and to raise their baby birds. A colony of nesting Brandt's Cormorants and Common
Murres on the rocks at the northwest corner of the Headlands puts on a great show in early summer as shown
by several photos on this website:
Amazing coastal vista from Mendocino Headlands
This is a great place to walk out along the cliffs (headlands) and enjoy the incredible seascapes, the sounds
of the Pacific, many seabirds and seals. Don't miss the sea arches
The wildflowers, grasses, birds and others on the coastal trails are delightful.
Amazing views, absolutely gorgeous.
What a terrific place to take in a long view of the coast, crashing waves, cool wildlife and adorable town of
Mendocino on the cliff.
The Heeser Dr. with several parking lots in Mendocino enables visitors to drive close to the towering cliffs of
From each of the parking lots along Heeser Dr., there is a short hiking trail (about 50 feet or less) to reach this
hiking trail along the top of the towering cliffs of Mendocino Headlands to enjoy the spectacular views.
Point Cabrillo Light Station at 13800 Point Cabrillo Dr, Mendocino, CA 95460. It is about 3 miles north of
This is a good location with wide Pacific Ocean views, for watching otters in the kelp beds, and for whale
watching in the spring season when many gray whales and their babies swim closer to the shore. Visitors can
often observe these gentle giants of the Pacific right from the shore, while pods nestle in Mendocino’s tame
coves — especially near Point Cabrillo, under the lighthouse — to feed their young and rest. Whale watching
festivals abound and include the Mendocino Whale Festival, which is usually the first weekend in March, and the
Fort Bragg Whale Festival, held in mid-March.
The coast line near Point Cabrillo Light Station.
The half-mile paved hiking trail from the main parking lot to Point Cabrillo Light Station. Handicapped cars can
drive to another parking lot at the light station. Visitors can enjoy the view, the nature, many birds, Marsh
hawk or even deer while hiking on this trail.
Glass Beach near the junction of Elm Street & Old Haul Rd (Glass Beach Dr), Fort Bragg, CA, 95437.
In the early 1900's the nearby city of Fort Bragg in Northern California used to dump all their trash on this
beach. (Dumping stopped in 1967.) Over the course of the century, it was nature, the ocean endless ebb and
flow of the tide that tumbled all the glass into smooth, colorful and beautiful pebbles of "sea glass jewels",
making for an intriguing and beautiful beach. The beach, as you might have guessed, is called Glass Beach.
Many beautiful photos of very colorful and smooth glass pebbles on Glass Beach can be seen on this website:
However, when we visited Glass Beach on August 2, 2017, most of beautiful glass pebbles are gone already
leaving only very tiny glass pebbles that visitors had to look harder to find them.
Giant redwood in Hendy Woods State Park located at 18599 Philo Greenwood Rd, Philo, CA 95466. It is near
Highway 128. On August 1, 2017, we drove north on Highway 101 from San Francisco Bay Area, then drove
northwest on Highway 128 to go to Mendocino. We took a short detour from Highway 128 to tour the old
growth giant redwood forest in Hendy Woods State Park.
On August 1, 2017, when we were driving on Highway 128 through Anderson Valley Wine Region to go to
Mendocino, we saw many vineyards and wineries along Highway 128. There are more than 30 Vineyards, and
Wineries with wine tasting room and fabulous restaurants in Anderson Valley Wine Region along Highway 128.
(Husch Vineyards, Toulouse Vineyards Winery, Greenwood Ridge vineyards, Handley Cellars, Navarro Vineyard
and Winery, etc.)
We also saw many vineyards along Highway 101 when we were driving south back to San Francisco Bay area.
After winding over rolling hills and through the Anderson Valley, visitors traveling west along Highway 128
suddenly enter an eleven-mile-long redwood tunnel to the sea to reach Mendocino. These are second growth
Historically, Mendocino and Fort Bragg were lumber mill and logging towns. When 1906 San Francisco
earthquake happened, Mendocino prospered by supplying much of the lumber used for the rebuilding of San
From Highway 101, visitors can reach Mendocino and Fort Bragg by driving on either Highway 128 or Highway
20. But both routes require visitors to endure about one hour of driving on winding and twisting mountain road
through redwood forest to reach the seashore.
The imposing main entrance gate of three arches with golden-yellow tiles to the City of Ten Thousand
Buddhas, dazzling golden in the sunlight. On August 3, 2017, on our return trip, we took a slight detour from
Highway 101 to visit the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas (萬佛聖城 ) located at 4951 Bodhi Way, Ukiah, CA
95482, about 110 miles north of San Francisco.
I took this picture from inside our rental car which was moving. A much better picture of the Entrance Gate
can be seen at:
It is an international Buddhist community and monastery. This is the first large Buddhist monastic community in
the United States. Over a hundred volumes of Buddhist scriptures have been translated into English, Spanish,
Vietnamese, and other languages here, laying a solid foundation for the dissemination of the Buddha dharma
in the West.
The Hall of Ten Thousand Buddhas guarded by four guardian lions (石獅 ). Since ancient times Lion statues
adorned palaces and temples and other important buildings in India and in Buddhist culture Lion was depicted
as the protector of Dharma.
Gwan Yin Bodhisattva (千手觀音菩薩 ). The main Buddhist statue in the Hall of Ten Thousand Buddhas is
twenty-foot high wooden statue of the Thousand-Handed, Thousand-Eyed Guanshiyin (Avalokiteshvara)
Bodhisattvain. Majestic and towering, this adorned figure is crowned with transformation Buddhas. There are
thousand hands in the front and back, each with a compassionate eye in its palm.
When we were here, there was religious process going on in the hall. We did not go inside the hall. I took a
few pictures from the door. Much better pictures in the hall can be seen on the following website:
The City of Ten Thousand Buddhas has approximately 700 acres of land, over seventy large buildings, and over
two thousand rooms of various sizes. The entire complex could accommodate over 20,000 residents.
Currently about 80 acres of the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas have been developed for use as part of the
monastic complex. Twenty-five of the more than seventy large buildings are already being used for religious,
educational, administrative, and residential purposes. The remaining 400 acres are fields, orchards, vineyards,
Why is it called the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas? The Venerable Master explained:
Everybody who comes here has a chance to become a Buddha. As long as you come here, someday, surely
you will be a Buddha. And it is not only ten thousand people, but a hundred thousand, a million, ten million, one
hundred million, billions and millions of billions of people here in the City will become Buddhas.
The walls on all four sides in the Hall of Ten Thousand Buddhas are covered with a grid of compartments, and
each compartment contains a statue of a Buddha. There are a total of ten thousand Buddha statues, great and
small. When one stands amidst them, one feels as if one is in the Thousand Buddhas Cave in Dunhuang, China.
Beautiful red lotus flower in bloom in the lotus pond with many red fish in the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas.
More and better pictures of lotus and many red fish can be seen on the following website:
The special meaning of these beautiful lotus flowers in Buddhist religion are also described on this website.
Another statue of Gwan Yin (觀音) in the Exhibit Room in Visitor Center in the City of Ten Thousand
We enjoyed vegetarian lunch in this restaurant in the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas.
The Bodhi Way (菩提道) in the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas symbolizes the path towards tranquility
Looking up and up on the tall redwood trees. It is amazing to gaze at these wonders.
What an amazing sight these trees are!!! The forest is breathtakingly beautiful.