Thanks to tree-shaded streets, an inviting downtown, and a vibrant cultural life, Ukiah was once named California’s best small town—and the sixth best in the entire country. The largest city in Mendocino County, Ukiah is home to a bumper crop of Bartlett pears, Victorian architecture and a distinctive laid-back vibe. For a taste of the past, saunter over to the Grace Hudson Museum for a personal tour of the Sun House, a stunning 1911 craftsman bungalow offering an inside look into the lifestyle of artist Grace Carpenter Hudson.
Hike and bike up a storm on a host of hiking trails in the western hills and Ukiah’s cycle-friendly streets. Golfers can try for a birdie at the only 18-hole golf course in the county. Follow the signs to Lake Mendocino for outdoor recreation or take a trek to the City of 10,000 Buddhas for some spiritual renewal.