Fort Bragg offers activities for travelers of all ages; including kayaking, hiking, bike riding, and much more. And of course there are plenty of good places to eat!
This was my first time visiting Fort Bragg, in over 10 years, and I found it to be an amazing and beautiful place to travel. On this trip, I camped at MacKerricher National Park, as I did before, and ended up sleeping in the site adjacent to the one in which I had slept, years ago, which I found to be quite charming. While there is a substantial amount of room between fire pits, it is a public campground, and as such you do have neighbors who are relatively close. The cost was $40 per night, and firewood was available for purchase for an additional $10 at the kiosk.
The campground is next to the beach – literally within walking distance – and there is a little foot path which you can take, leading you to and through the leaves and the lights – spitting you out onto a paved road, leading to sand and water.
I decided to take my guitar down to the shoreline and play some tunes, while listening to the waves crash against the rocks; a very surreal experience. The stars in the night sky; sitting on the dunes; the salty smell of the endless sea. These things all made for a wonderful escape from the droll of the day to day monotony – that never would have mattered – till I rose to the call of adventure inside of me.
After a night of camping beneath the same constellations that shone during the days when the Spanish Conquistadors ventured to what we now call the West Coast, I woke up and – after cleaning up and ensuring I left no trace behind – drove the dozen or so miles into the town of Fort Bragg, where I looked for a place to eat some breakfast; and I was not disappointed.
Cafe 1 offers a scrumptious menu of organic meals, both vegan and non-vegan. The decor screams “Americana diner,” and the food screams “More please.” There is a bar where you can sit, that has a view of the kitchen and the coffee makers, stationed beneath the framed photographs clearly taken by local photographers; each with their own uniqueness.
With everything to offer from organic eggs, to Irish oats, to whole wheat pancakes smothered in organic syrup, the menu did not disappoint. I decided on the `Hungry Person’ 2 eggs, sausage or bacon & 2 pancakes $ 11.25 which was enough food for – in my opinion – two hungry people, and therefore fed me for breakfast, as well as a late lunch. The pancakes were fluffy, the eggs cooked just right, and the sausage had the perfect amount of Italian seasoning as to remind me of my fanciful years spent in Italy working with the Corleone family, selling olive oil to the…wait…I think I am getting lost in the nostalgia of the moment!
Just writing about the delicious food I ate at Cafe 1 makes my mouth water, and I can’t wait until my next visit. This time I might try the `Not so Hungry’ – 1 egg and 1 pancake $ 5.50. Or the `Groovy’ Organic Potatoes – cheddar cheese, garlic, onion, sour cream, salsa & guacamole (with organic veggies or turkey sausage) $11.95, depending on how hungry I am.
If you have the chance to eat there, please let me know and share your experience!
After breakfast I went to Fort Bragg Cyclery, and rented a nice Specialized bike to ride along the coast. It was reasonably priced, and the staff was very friendly.
Being a taller guy, they fit me with a large bike, as well as a helmet, and bike lock.
Before taking off I went and bought some reef shoes from Lost Surf Shack. The owner was really nice and accommodating and I recommend anyone check out the selection of clothing, shoes, and boards that Lost Surf Shack has to offer!
After applying sunscreen, I rode down to the beach parking lot and I parked my bike and locked it up and then walked out to Glass Beach and took in the view, where there were a lot of people looking through the glass remnants of what once was a dump.
I then cruised the bike trail all the way from Fort Bragg to the campgrounds where I stayed the night before. It took about an hour or so, with all the stops I made, to take in the sights. On the way back I stopped and went down to one of the beaches and waded into the waves and let them crash around me, soaking in the sun, the blue sky, and the golden sand.
The West Coast is definitely one of the most beautiful and amazing places in the world! Check out my youtube channel for more videos of This Amazing World!