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A foraging lesson at a North Coast mushroom festival

Northern California

North Coast Festivals

You can learn a lot about a place at its local festivals. Consider the Kinetic Grand Championship, a cosmically silly three-day battle between human-powered works of art (imagine a speeding dragon made out of hubcaps) that race from Arcata to Ferndale. In fall, early rains usher in the Mendocino Mushroom Festival; don’t miss this opportunity to sample the elusive candy cap mushroom, the sweetest of locally foraged fungi. Wash down fresh-from-the-sea crab with local brews and wines during the annual Crab, Wine & Beer Festival, held in January. Come springtime, celebrate the annual migration of gray whales as they swim and spout along the North Coast on their way to Alaska.  


Creativity, contraptions and costumes—those are the mantras for this wacky three-day Memorial Day weekend (last weekend in May) event on a wild stretch of the North Coast. Dubbed the 'triathalon...

The Kinetic Grand Championship on California's North Coast
Erik Fitzpatrick/Flickr
California's North Coast

Winter rains signal the beginning of the North Coast’s astounding mushroom season. Celebrate the harvest of one of the region’s most loved bounties—and a few other products of the liquid variety—...

Chefs at work at Feast Mendocino
Brendan McGuigan
The North Coast region of California