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Is NorCal Calling You? San Francisco Road Trip Ideas

Is NorCal Calling You San Francisco Road Trip Ideas

Life’s challenging for everybody, right now, and any respite from the pandemic seems far from easy to come by. To say some of us are suffering from cabin fever is an understatement, but that just makes us (despite the challenges) more determined to seek out travels away home, leaving the troubles of the pandemic behind – if for nothing more than a few short days.

Just as well then that, thanks to the strict guidelines in place in the region, Northern California has thus far done as good a job as possible of keeping the virus under control, which has ensured discovering the area’s abundant natural beauty is still possible. In addition to visiting the likes of hotels, state parks, breweries and wineries and, of course, staying in accommodation and taking advantage of Goodnite Inn hotel offers.

And all of that means you might want to check out where’s worth visiting if you’re planning on staying in or around San Francisco and fancy a road trip during your time away. Where in NorCal is recommended, right now?


(68 miles/ 1 hour and 15 minutes from San Francisco)

Amazingly beautiful healdsburg California views

Very easy to reach by road from a San Fran Goodnite Inn, the wine-country town of Healdsburg’s a great destination, given it means you won’t be spending hours and hours in the car. As well as its ample winery and culinary options, there tends to be good weather here much of the time – and, probably best of all this year, a fair amount of outdoor seating at the many food-and-drink attractions.

Once you’ve arrived in town, a great option would be taking in one of two wineries just outside the center. Either Jordan Winery, with its ‘Paris on the Terrace’ bistro-like lunch offerings and oak tree-shaded wine tasting, or Bricoleur Vineyards, with its similarly atmospheric outdoor tasting and awesome ‘Essential Picnic’ option enjoyed in the open air on this copious 40-acre estate.

Lassen Volcanic National Park

(236 miles/ 3 hours and 30 minutes from San Francisco)

Lassen Volcanic National Park

Leaving the concerns of the big city behind you (for instance, the necessary safety protocols at your accommodation – does it have a Covid-19 responder room?), going on a visit to this glorious national park inevitably pivots around the spectacular, fascinating Mount Lassen.

The biggest lava dome on the face of the earth, Lassen erupted without warning just over a century ago, having been assumed extinct. If that doesn’t put you off, the mount’s actually fairly easy to climb and is fully open to tourists (and highly unlikely to erupt again during your visit!). You’re recommended, too, to pay a stop at the 129-feet-tall waterfall Burney Falls, which is believed to have been referred to as the eighth wonder of the world by Teddy Roosevelt – and who would argue with him?


(126 miles/ 2 hours and 30 minutes from San Francisco)


Now, sure, you could book a stay further south at the relaxed Good Nite Inn San Diego SeaWorld or you could stay in fantastic San Francisco and then pay a visit to this wonderfully chilled, Mendocino coastal town. For instance, it’s a perfect destination for picnicking, followed by a kayak-float down Gualala River. Bliss.

Or, alternatively, you could go on a laid-back whale-watching hike in the glorious Gualala Point Regional Park, which’ll also afford you the chance to take in the sumptuous, century-old trees in Salt Point State Park’s pygmy forest, blessed with a charm all of their own due to their unique stunted growth. Small but perfectly formed, indeed!