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Saddle Up

Highway 1 looks even better atop a horse

Author Brittany Shoot

tastemakers2The best way to see the Pacific Coast Highway has always been from a vintage convertible—until now. With last summer’s opening of the Inn at Newport Ranch, three and a half hours north of San Francisco, in Mendocino County, the back of a horse may have just galloped into the top spot for preferred mode of transportation. 

The working 2,000-acre ranch, complete with 150 head of cattle, offers more than a mile of untouched coastline along rugged grass-covered bluffs. Guests are encouraged to rent a mountain bike or ATV or, better yet, wrangle a horse from nearby Ricochet Ridge Ranch and Stables to explore the property’s 20 miles of trails, which skirt stream banks, trace ridge tops, and wind through redwood groves.  

Those iconic redwoods have been used in the construction of the compound’s buildings, including in the three-guestroom main lodge, the owners’ oceanside bungalow (also available to rent), and the Redwood House, which incorporates 24 largely intact trees that shoot up from the subterranean spa two full stories to support a dazzling cathedral ceiling. 

Perhaps best of all, the inn’s closest neighbor is Pacific Star Winery, the westernmost winery in the country—it’s so close, in fact, that you can walk back to your room after a late-afternoon tasting. 

2 Responses to “Saddle Up”

  1. Lari Shea Says:
    January 2nd, 2016 at 2:38 pm

    What an incredible way to experience the redwoods and cattle ranch overlooking the ocean… on the back of a horse!

  2. Carlos Sanchez Says:
    January 6th, 2016 at 10:00 am

    You paint a wonderful picture in your descriptions. I just wish you had included more pictures than just the one. The picture, as apealing as it makes the horeseback riding, doesn't show the redwoods, the ocean clifs, the lodge nor anything else that you describe in your article. Now I am off to search for pictures of the Inn at Newport Ranch.


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