Redwood Coast 3-Day Culinary Tour Humboldt County has some distinct attributes when it comes to its culinary expertise. Humboldt County with its towering redwoods and gorgeous coastline is the largest producer of oysters in California, has the first USDA certified organic brewery in the U.S. and is known for its unconventional farmers and ranchers who have gone against the grain and have decided to grow and raise organic crops, dairy and meet. On this tour you will experience the beautiful redwoods and the culinary delights only Humboldt County can offer.
Day 1: As you enter Humboldt County from the South along Hwy 101, you will be immediately inundated with redwoods on either side of you. Continue on Hwy 101 and exit at the Avenue of the Giants. This part of the tour will take you on a scenic drive through towering redwoods. Continue onto Hwy 101 and take the Kenmar Rd. Exit at Fortuna for dinner at the Eel River Brewing Company. Eel River Brewing Company is unique for its distinction in being the country's first USDA Certified Organic Brewery. Handcrafted microbrews currently on tap include: Extra Pale Ale, California Blonde, Organic Amber, Organic I.P.A., Hazelnut Porter, Ravens Eye Stout, and Triple Exultation. Along with organic brews, Eel River Brewing Co. also proudly serves its own brewery raised organic grass fed beef. Continue onto the Victorian Village of Ferndale. Nestled in a verdant, pastoral valley near Northern California's redwood forests, Ferndale was founded in 1852. A prosperous dairy industry provided the economic base, and the blend of agriculture and architecture produced splendidly ornate buildings that are known today as "Butterfat Palaces. Stroll the town's Historic Main Street District, where art galleries, antique shops and boutiques complement a dazzling array of 19th-century Gothic Revival, Italianate, Eastlake and Queen Anne homes. Overnight in Ferndale.
Day 2: Start your day by heading North on Hwy 101 toward Eureka. Stroll through Old Town and along the waterfront. The Historic buildings and homes that line the streets have been lovingly restored and house a unique collection of locally owned shops that boast authentic Humboldt made products. After a walk through old town head down the street to the Humboldt Bay Tourism Center for an excursion with Humboldt Bay Oyster Tours. Tours are available by motorboat. This interactive tour includes oyster farming history, harvesting techniques, bay and marsh ecology, boat safety, hands-on oyster harvesting, and includes three oysters to take home or to the restaurant of your choice. The Humboldt Bay Oyster Tour takes two hours and runs rain or shine. If you would rather stay off the water you can still enjoy local oysters at the Humboldt Bay Tourism Center. They also serve local wine, beer cheese, chocolate, olives and bread. Next is a half day tour with Humboldt Beer tours who will take you to three of the six local microbreweries. The tour includes roundtrip transportation to and from the breweries and a beer bar, complementary tastings at each brewery, lunch at a brewery, a behind the scenes tour of one brewery and a Humboldt Beer Tours logo pint glass. For dinner, stay in Old Town and take your pick of restaurants serving many local foods including local seafood. Overnight in Eureka.
Day 3: Today you will travel up the Coast of Humboldt County to Redwood National Park but along the way stop and savor the culinary wonders of the redwood coast. If you happen to be visiting on a Saturday between mid-April and mid-November a must-stop is the Arcata Farmers Market. The Plaza turns into a bustling kaleidoscope of beautiful fresh flowers, colorful locally grown produce, and funky artisan goods created by North Coast crafts persons. Local farmers pride themselves on the quality and freshness of their produce and flowers, offering visitors to Arcata the rare treat of sampling the vibrant flavors of the North Coast. Along with flowers and produce, the market features other items such as locally produced honey, fudge, and cider, as well as native plants, bulbs, and trees. Drive North on Hwy 101 toward the seaside fishing village of Trinidad. The Trinidad area is one of the most spectacular and pristine segments of the California coast, and has been established as a California Coastal National Monument Gateway - an area that offers the best shore-based opportunities to discover and view offshore rocks and islands and their inhabitants. Head further north along Hwy 101 to Redwood National Park. Take the Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway that leads to the Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park Visitor Center. Park here and take a hike through the redwoods. You will be amazed by how tall and wide these trees are. Trail suggestions. Now take Davison road out to Fern Canyon*. Fern Canyon is a narrow canyon with walls 40 to 80 feet high covered in many different types of ferns and moisture loving plants. Fern Canyon is a natural wonder and was used in the movie Jurassic Park II, The Lost World. Wildlife viewing includes Roosevelt elk, whale watching, and interesting birding (spotted owl, marbled murrelet, and 262 more animal species). After your hike head back south to Trinidad for dinner. Choices include Moonstone Grill overlooking Moonstone Beach and Sunset Restaurant overlooking Trinidad Bay. Take an after dinner walk on Moonstone Beach with its beautiful vistas of headlands and rocky coves, it is a great spot for surfing, surf kayaking and just walking, this beach has it all --- rocks to climb, tide pools, sea caves, plenty of sand and the Little River for boating and swimming. Overnight in Trinidad.
*Due to the volume of visitors, California State Parks / National Park Service will require Day Use Permits to access to Gold Bluffs Beach. Reservations will be required May 15th to September 15th. Reservations are not required September 16th to May 14th. Visitors are still required to pay the day-use fee. Apply for a Permit: https://www.redwoodparksconservancy.org/permits/fern-canyon-permits