Adventures + Activities

Discover Within

Celebrated for existing in harmony with its “Secret Coast”, Mar Vista has boundless opportunities for you to adventure, connect & delight in activities on our grounds.

Photo of Harold the Rabbit

Meet the Mar Vista Bunnies

Biscuit + Bunz – our two  resident bunnies.  They are young brothers with lots of energy. You’ll see them out playing in the late afternoons. If your’e lucky they just might run up to you to say Hello!

Drop by anytime.

Feed the Goats

Help us feed Willy, Wally, and Wiley, our Nubian triplets. They like hay and oats only, and maybe an occasional finger nibble! Typically around 4:00 daily.


flock of hens following Deanna in the chicken area

Chicken Chats and Egg Collection

Meet the hens who produce the farm-fresh eggs you enjoy in your cottage each morning—and even help us collect the eggs from these lovely ladies! You’ll learn some chicken trivia and feed them as well, so be sure to wear old boots! Perfect for all ages. 

Meet at the flower garden daily, 5 p.m. (4 p.m. during fall & winter months).  Backyard chicken keeping classes also available for an additional fee and must be booked ahead of your stay.

Close up of adult hands transplanting a seedling

Garden Tours/Classes

With 20+ gardens featuring veggies, herbs, fruits, and flowers, we know a bit about growing things—and our gardening experts can help you get the most out of your garden, too.

Garden Tours available for an additional fee and must be reserved ahead of your stay.  Tours can be added to your reservation during the booking process.

Two people enjoying a picnic on a picnic blanket

Moments for Two

The only thing you’ll need for this activity is a sense of adventure—and a partner in crime! Cuddle up in our hammock, slip into the soaking tub at sunset, or grab a glass and stroll hand in hand to the fire pit.

Our onsite play cabin for children

Play Time

Near the lower pond and our two-bedroom cottages, kids have a special “cottage” all their own: a small playhouse known as “Cottage 13.” And there’s much more for younger guests, from meeting our bunnies and goats to checking out the tide-pools on the beach—after all, who doesn’t love seeing a starfish?

Two adults making smores over the fire pit

S’mores by the Fire

Our s’mores kits make for a sensational evening, whether it’s with the kids or just the grown-ups! They include roasting sticks, chocolate, graham crackers, and (of course) marshmallows.


Join our unique yoga experiences to strengthen, stretch & rejuvenate your body during your stay at Mar Vista. Weekly complimentary Vinyasa-style classes take place on the Upper Deck Lookout or beach (weather permitting). Beginners are welcome. Bring your own mat, or borrow one of ours!

Most Saturdays 9:30 a.m 

Private and group sessions available for an additional fee and should be reserved ahead of your stay.

Yoga students in triangle pose on the beach

Local Explorations

Adventure Beyond

Charming seaside villages nestled among the Mendocino coast draw inspiration from the natural landscape, boasting rich cultural and outdoor experiences for the intentional traveler. Explore expansive state parks, hidden coves, and preserves— all within a short drive of Mar Vista.

Beaches and Parks

Fish Rock Beach | Our Private Beach Walk

Explore Mar Vista’s very own coastal haven, just steps from your cottage. Our secluded beach is perfect for exploring saltwater wonders and relaxing beneath a mesmerizing sunset.

Mar Vista guests enter through a private gate that leads to a staircase down to the beach. Look for our green gate inside the fence on the southwest side of the property. Please do not cut through the Whale Watch Inn.

Manchester State Beach (Stoneboro Road entrance)

The southern access point to Manchester State Beach. A 1.5-mile drive down this road will take you to the parking area. To get to the beach, simply walk another half-mile through beautiful cocoa-colored dunes. The beach is a great four-mile stretch for beachcombing, bird-watching, and beautiful views of the Point Arena Lighthouse.

Mile marker 19.64

Shell Beach

A great spot for spotting seals and tide-pooling, this sandy beach is one of six access-point beaches along Highway 1 in the Sea Ranch community. It’s a little more than a half-mile walk from the access point, through some pine trees and a meadow.

9 miles south of Mar Vista at Sonoma County mile marker 55.24

Pelican Bluff Trail

This great coastal walking trail is about 2 miles atop high cliffs—the magnificent ocean vistas make it a Mar Vista favorite.

Right before the town of Point Arena, at Mendocino Mile marker 13.9 (approximately)

Moat Creek Trail Beach

Also called Whisky Shoals, this area is popular with surfers and also good for abalone shells and tide-pooling. There are two trails from the parking structure. One is a very short path straight out to the rocky beach; to access the bluff trail, take the steps leading up to the bluff for stunning ocean views. This trail will take you to Ross Creek Beach after about a mile. If the tide is low, you can continue south to Bowling Ball beach.

Less than 8 miles north of Mar Vista at Mendocino County mile marker 12.89

The Stornetta Public Lands

Great trails for hiking, running, whale-watching, and picnicking surrounding the Point Arena Lighthouse just north of the town of Point Arena. You’ll find beautiful, flat, wide-open pathways and steep beach access at Sea Lion’s Cove.

14 miles north of Mar Vista, just a couple of miles after the town of Point Arena

Van Damme State Park – Fern Canyon Trail

If you are looking for a redwoods hike, this is a great option.  About an hour drive north of Mar Vista on Highway One is  Van Damme State Park.  If you have a full day, start at the main entrance to the park for an 8-9 mile loop.  If you are looking for something shorter, start at the Pygmie Forest off of Little River Airport Road (south of the main entrance) for a 4 mile loop through lush redwoods alongside the creek.

Local Tides

Most beaches can be enjoyed at tides of 3’ and under with some variance depending on the beach. For the best tide-pooling, it’s best to visit when tides are below 1.5’. Even during low tides the ocean waves can be large and dangerous during certain weather patterns. Always be cautious and stay away from edges and cliffs.

Gualala Point Regional Park

This park features several trails, including an ADA-accessible trail that leads to the beach through meadows and cypress. The bluff-top trail connects Gualala Point to the Salal trail south into the Sea Ranch community. Follow for 3 miles to get to Walk On Beach.

6 miles south of Mar Vista, at Sonoma County mile marker 58.19

Bowling Ball Beach

Pictured above, this geological wonder is at the north end of Schooner Gulch beach. Take the north trail from the parking area for a short beach hike to the rock formations that resemble large bowling balls. A must-see at low tide for the best viewing and tide-pooling!

6.5 miles north of Mar Vista at Mendocino County mile marker 11.41

Hearn Gulch

This Redwood Coast Land Conservancy acquisition features a sheltered ravine and sandy pocket beach with a small creek. Notice the surrounding volcanic rock formation and narrow sea tunnel.

Mile marker 10.00

Other Local Activities

Point Arena Lighthouse

A historic landmark that celebrated 150 years in 2020, the 115-foot-tall Point Arena Lighthouse is known for the many great viewing areas for whale-watching throughout the year. It also offers a fully interactive experience to learn about the history and science of this area.  Lighthouse tower tours are NOW available after a 2 year hiatus.  Call for days/times available.

Go through the town of Point Arena, then turn left and travel 2 miles to reach the point

B. Bryan Preserve

This private preserve is actively committed to the breeding and preservation of African hoof stock—its various species of zebra, giraffe, and antelope range from critically endangered to endangered, and roam large, open fields on the property in Point Arena. Guided and self-guided tours are offered daily (reservations required).

14 miles north of Mar Vista, at the end of the town of Point Arena on Riverside Drive

River Bend Kayaks

River Bend Kayaks is your gateway to the enchanting Gualala River, offering unforgettable kayak rental experiences.  Discover a journey that takes you through ancient redwood forests, past vibrant ecosystems, and into the heart of what it means to truly disconnect and immerse yourself in the natural world.  A variety of boat rentals available for all skill levels.

Access right off the bridge at the Mill Bend Preserve, 1 mile south of town.


North Pacific Adventure

An adventure tour operator offering a range of guided ocean kayak tours out of Point Arena.  From kayak fishing to a Caves and Coves kayak tour, as well as surfing and whale watching tours (in season).  All trips include the necessary equipment needed, a knowledgeable guide and digital photos of your experience.  Advance booking required.

Located at the Arena Cove in Point Arena


Ross Ranch

Take a Horseback Tour on the beach or through Redwoods. The beach tour takes you on a private trail to the beautiful Manchester beach, where the coastline of the Elk coast unfolds before you. The Redwood tour will take you into the mountains of Elk, where you ride on private trails among tall coastal Redwoods.

Reservations are required.

20 miles north of Mar Vista (beach rides)


Gualala Arts Center

A vibrant and active arts association supporting a variety of programs for both residents and visitors to the area. Rotating art exhibits, as well as musical performances and onsite workshops. On the second weekend in August each year, they present one of the most prestigious art exhibitions in northern California—the Art in the Redwoods Festival. Don’t miss the short and scenic haiku trail on the grounds, as well as picnic tables, a sculpture garden and another trail leading to the river.

Turn left on Old State Hwy just off Hwy1 at the south end of Downtown Gualala


Anderson Valley Wineries

Anderson Valley is located in the rolling hills of our coastal region of Mendocino County.  It is the wine country we all used to know – approachable, intimate, uncrowded, and primarily owner-operated.

Only fifteen miles long, this beautiful valley is home to a unique group of vineyards and wineries producing a broad range of ultra-premium wines including world-class Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Alsace Varietals (Riesling, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris). 

45min- 1 hour drive from Mar Vista


Arena Theater

Located in downtown Point Arena, CA, Arena Theater offers first run movies, art movies and live performance/music.

14 miles north of Mar Vista