Mendocino Art Center

Coastal Highway 1

Behind a yard of twisting iron sculpture, the city’s art center takes up a whole tree-filled block. It hosts exhibitions, nationally renowned art classes and the 81-seat Helen Schoeni Theatre, which is home to the Mendocino Theatre Company ( This is also where to pick up the Mendocino Arts magazine, a bi-annual publication listing all the happenings and festivals in town.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Coastal Highway 1 attractions

1. Kwan Tai Temple

0.13 MILES

Peering in the window of this 1852 temple reveals an old altar dedicated to the Chinese god of war. Tours are available by appointment and provide a…

2. Kelley House Museum

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Check out the research library and changing exhibits on early California and Mendocino. The 1861 museum hosts seasonal, two-hour walking tours for $10;…

3. Van Damme State Park


Three miles south of Mendocino, this sprawling 1831-acre park draws beachcombers, divers and kayakers to its easy-access beach, and hikers to its pygmy…

4. Point Cabrillo Light Station

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Built in 1909, this stout lighthouse stands on a 300-acre wildlife preserve north of town, between Russian Gulch and Caspar Beach. The grounds also…

5. Jug Handle State Natural Reserve

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Between Mendocino and Fort Bragg, Jug Handle preserves an ecological staircase that you can view on a 5-mile (round-trip) self-guided nature trail. The…

6. Sea Glass Museum


Just south of town, this museum showcases the sea glass found on local beaches with beautiful displays, plus audiovisual explanations and additional…

7. Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens

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This gem of Northern California displays native flora, rhododendrons and heritage roses. The succulent display alone is amazing and the organic garden is…

8. Jackson Demonstration State Forest

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Fifteen miles west of Willits on Hwy 20, this forest offers day-use recreational activities, including hiking trails and mountain-biking. You can also…