Why Humboldt County is California’s Best Kept Secret
Humboldt County is mostly known for being the marijuana capital of America, but relatively few people know about what a great getaway destination it is. Notably, the the Northern California county is a wonderful vacation spot for hikes around its towering redwoods, beautiful jagged coastline, and in my opinion, great beers. I am fortunate to have done countless trips to Humboldt because Roger is from the region, but wanted to finally create a list of recommendations for first-timers and those who aren’t familiar with the area. I truly believe it is Northern California’s best kept secret. I personally love Humboldt for its quiet, small town vibes and relaxing outdoorsy offerings. If you’re interested in doing a trip to the lush and inviting Californian destination, here are my top things to do in Humboldt County.
Humboldt County Basics:
- Accommodations: I recommend staying at a hotel or Airbnb in Eureka or Arcata. A bed and breakfast around Trinidad would be relaxing as well.
- Weather: It is often foggy and has a very similar climate to the Pacific Northwest. I recommend bringing layers even in the summer!
- Location: Eureka (Humboldt’s largest city) is a ~5 hour drive north of San Francisco and ~7 hours south of Portland, Oregon.
Our Weekend in Humboldt County Itinerary:
- Avenue of the Giants: This is not to be missed. You will be in awe as you stroll through its forest surrounded by towering trees and ginormous fallen redwoods. I recommend going straight to Founders Grove.
- College Cove (Trinidad): What a hidden gem! A short hike takes you to this very secluded beach where you can spend a quiet afternoon. We took a very steep trail, but there appears to be an easier route.
- Trinidad, CA hikes: We did a short hike at the Trinidad Head Loop right by Trinidad State Beach, which rewards you with a beautiful view of the Pacific.
- Arcata Farmers’ Market: This bustling Saturday market offers fresh flowers and produce, delicious eats, and live music.
- Humboldt Cider Company (Eureka): This was my first time going to a cidery and it was lovely! We got a full fight of ciders (10 for $19) and relaxed in their cider garden.
Other Notable Things to do in Humboldt County:
- Arcata Community Forest: Situated right behind Humboldt State University, this forest is perfect for a peaceful hike or tricky game of disc golf.
- Strawberry Rock (Trinidad): A moderate hike takes you to Strawberry Point, which provides a breathtaking view of the surrounding forest and Pacific Ocean.
- Patrick’s Point State Park (Trinidad): Enjoy the beach, hike the trails, or camp at this picturesque state park.
- Mad River Beach or Clam Beach: Relax at one of Humboldt’s beaches, which feature dunes and wispy grasses.
- Old Town Eureka: Explore Humboldt’s history at Old Town and stroll along its riverfront, which offers a range of restaurants and local boutiques.
- Minor Theater (Arcata): This is the oldest theater in the United States! Definitely worth checking out for its historical significance.
- Breweries: 6 Rivers Brewery (McKinleyville), Redwood Curtain Brewing Co. (Arcata), Eel River Brewing (Fortuna), Lost Coast Brewery (Eureka).
The Weekend Trip to Humboldt County in Pictures:
Questions or Recommendations on Traveling to Humboldt County? Let me know in the comments!