Crescent City is Del Norte County's only incorporated city, named for its beautiful crescent-shaped stretch of Pacific Coast beachfront. The city is home to historic attractions such as the Battery Point Lighthouse and the Brother Jonathan Cemetery, providing easy visitor access to the beautiful nearby Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, which features some of the most spectacular old-growth redwood and sequoia trees in the world.
1.Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park
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Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park is a 10,000-acre state park that is cooperatively managed by the California State Parks service and the National Park Service. The park was established in 1929, named for the first European settler to explore Northern California's interior in the 1820s. It has been declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an International Biosphere Reserve for its protected population of California old-growth redwood trees, which preserves more than 45 percent of the region's redwood population. Fishing, snorkeling, and kayaking opportunities are offered within the park along the Smith River, which is known as a major filming site for the 1936 feature film The Last of the Mohicans. Tent and RV hookups are offered at Jedediah Smith Campground, along with a variety of interpretive campfire programming hosted throughout the summer months.
Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-465-7335
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Stout Grove is located within Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park and is home to one of the most scenic stands of old-growth redwoods remaining in the world. The grove is accessible from the Stout Grove parking area and can be reached via a short loop trail. At the grove, a visitor viewing platform is offered to protect tree growth from human traffic, creating a spectacular panoramic photo opportunity spot. The grove is largely protected from the sights and sounds of nearby tourist routes such as Highway 101 and is a largely secluded spot due to the moderate difficulty of its access trail. Minimal development in the area creates a peaceful atmosphere, with spectacularly backlit foliage visible during sunset times.
Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-465-7335
3.Howland Hill Road
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Howland Hill Road is one of the top visitor drives within Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, allowing for easy scenic access in a park that remains largely undeveloped with visitor trails and access roads. The access road passes through the park's center and offers one of the most spectacular redwood drives on the American West Coast, with opportunities to see some of the largest and oldest redwood and sequoia trees in the world. Though the State of California briefly planned to turn the road into a four-lane visitor highway, it remains a narrow dirt road today, allowing for a completely secluded vibe and a feeling of reconnecting with nature in a secretive, undeveloped environment.
Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-465-7335
4.Battery Point Lighthouse
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Battery Point Lighthouse is a historic lighthouse located in Crescent City that was one of the California Pacific Coast's first lighthouses at the time of its 1855 construction. The lighthouse operated a fourth-order Fresnel lens between 1856 and 1953, when it was fully automated. In 1964, the lighthouse survived the strongest earthquake on record in the northern hemisphere and the subsequent tsunami caused by it. Today, it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and preserved as a California Historical Landmark, operated and overseen by the Del Norte Historical Society. The lighthouse is open to the public during low tide access, available for public guided tours daily during peak season and on weekends during off-season. The former keeper's quarters at the lighthouse are stocked with period furniture as a living history museum, showcasing displays of artifacts, photographs, and documents related to the lighthouse's history.
577 H Street, Crescent City, California 95531, Phone: 707-464-3089
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Crescent Beach is a public visitor beach located just south of the city of Crescent City, offering free visitor parking near Enderts Beach Road and Highway 101. The expansive beach is a popular seasonal spot for surfing, swimming, beach walking, sunbathing, and beachcombing, overseen by the National Park Service as part of Redwood National Park. Picnic tables are offered at the beach for day use, along with public restroom facilities and accessibility features. Dogs are permitted at the beach on short leashes with owner supervision. A wetland area at Mill Creek creates tide pools for visitor exploration, and a half-mile hiking trailhead to nearby Enderts Beach is provided at the beach's overlook point, which provides spectacular views of the surrounding beachfront region.
Enderts Beach Rd, Crescent City, CA 95531
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Ocean World is a privately-owned aquarium in Crescent City that was originally opened to the public in 1964 as Under Sea Gardens, located within a barge that was specifically constructed in Seattle for use as a mobile aquarium facility. In 1985, the barge was brought onto dry land at the Crescent City harbor, rebranded as Undersea World and later as Ocean World. Today, it is home to undersea habitats housed within more than half a million gallons of aquarium space, open daily to the public throughout the morning and afternoon hours. Guided tours are available, lasting approximately 45 minutes and spanning the aquarium's touch tide pool attraction and shark, ray, seal, and sea lion habitats. All tours also include viewings of seal and sea lion performances and opportunities to pet live sharks.
304 Highway 101 South Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-464-4900
7.Crescent Trail Rides
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Crescent Trail Rides offer horseback riding lessons and excursions near Crescent City for riders of all ages and ability levels. Lessons and tours are available seasonally between October and April, offering opportunities to explore nearby Redwoods and Tolowa Dunes State Parks on horseback. Visitors may bring their own horses or ride aboard the company's horses, led by experienced tour guides assisting with horsemanship techniques. Rides are offered along beachfront and redwood path areas, visiting area sites such as Kellogg Beach, Mill Creek, and the Yontocket Indian Memorial Site. Riders must be at least six years old, with all riders asked to wear helmets, long pants, and closed-toed shoes for safety.
Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-951-5407
8.Rumiano Cheese Company
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Rumiano Cheese Company is the oldest family-owned cheese production company in California, originally opened by Italian immigrants and brothers Fred, John, and Richard Rumiano in 1919. By the 1930s, the company had become one of the state's largest cheese producers, operating eight factories within the Crescent City region. Today, it is operated by third-generation Rumiano family members and is committed to crafting the highest quality cheese products possible with certified kosher, organic, and non-GMO ingredients. All cheese production occurs at the company's Crescent City facility, with a wide variety of cheese products available for sale at its public visitor store. A second factory and store are also offered in Willows, California.
511 9th St, Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 866-328-2433
9.Boy Scout Big Tree Trail
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Boy Scout Big Tree Trail is a popular trailhead within Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, accessible from a trailhead parking lot located along visitor access road Howland Hill Road. The out-and-back trail offers opportunities to see some of the most spectacular old-growth redwoods in existence anywhere in the world, completely secluded from traffic noise and signs of modern development. It passes through majestic sections of old-growth redwood forest, traversing a stream and a sloped hillside area that is also populated by hazelnut trees and huckleberry bushes. Visitors are advised to arrive early in the day during peak tourist times, as the trail can become very busy at midday or on the weekends. It is best viewed during the morning and early afternoon hours, when redwoods are fully illuminated by sunny weather conditions.
Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-465-7335
10.Del Norte County History Museum
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Del Norte County History Museum is a public museum operated by the Del Norte County Historical Society, located within Crescent City's former 1926 County Hall of Records facility. The museum has been open to the public since 1963, housed within the former County Jail portion of its historic building, with jail cells on the building's second floor serving as exhibit rooms. It details the social and cultural history of the Del Norte County History Museum, with exhibits showcasing the history and artifacts of local Tolowa and Yurok indigenous tribes, including one of Northern California's largest displays of indigenous basket-weaving. Other exhibits include collections of photographic and phonographic equipment, mining and logging tools, and period fashions and furniture from the region's 19th and 20th-century history. In the museum's Bolen Annex, the first-order Fresnel lens used in the Saint George Reef Lighthouse is displayed.
577 H Street, Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-464-3922
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Pebble Beach is a series of connected coves located throughout the Crescent City region, spanning areas located adjacent to Brother Jonathan Memorial Park. The beach offers several parking areas between Point St. George and Battery Point, with various beach access points offered along North and South Pebble Drives. A fishing access point and picnic area is offered at the beach's southern end, with access points also available to traverse the rocky shores of nearby Preston Island. Popular seasonal beach activities include fishing, hiking, surfing, bird watching, and beachcombing, with offshore bird and sea lion observation spots provided at nearby Castle Rock National Wildlife Refuge. Dogs are permitted at the beach on leashes.
N Pebble Beach Dr, Crescent City, CA 95531
12.Florence Keller County Park and Campground
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Florence Keller County Park and Campground is located approximately three miles from Crescent City along Highway 101, offering 50 campsites within the spectacular Redwoods State Park region. All campsites accommodate tent and vehicle space of up to 32 feet, with a large shared picnic area available for visitor rental that features a playground, volleyball court, horseshoe pits, and tetherball. The campsite is managed by Del Norte County and offers affordable rates for nightly reservation. Well-behaved pets are welcome at the campsite on leashes. The site serves as a popular launching-off point for exploration of the nearby Redwoods State Park region and the public visitor beaches of the Crescent City coastline.
3400 Cunningham Ln, Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-464-7230
13.Castle Rock National Wildlife Refuge
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Castle Rock National Wildlife Refuge is a 14-acre natural wildlife refuge that is located on an island that served as former Tolowa indigenous foraging and hunting grounds. Following the arrival of Europeans in North America, the island was claimed by the United States government, but was briefly sold to private owners in the early 20th century for the potential development of mining quarries or visitor attractions. After the discovery of the Aleutian cackling goose on the island, previously believed to have been extinct, the island was set aside as conservation lands, transferred to the care of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service in 1979. Today, it provides an important habitat for nesting seabirds, including monitored populations of Aleutian cackling geese. Though the refuge is not open to the public as a result of conservation efforts, seabirds can be viewed from the shore at several spots throughout Crescent City.
Crescent City, CA 95531
14.Six Rivers National Forest
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Six Rivers National Forest is a one-million-acre national forest spread throughout four counties in Northern California, offering a wide variety of seasonal outdoor recreational opportunities for visitors. The park takes its name from the six rivers that traverse through its land, including the Klamath, Smith, Mad, van Duzen, Eel, and Trinity Rivers, which offer opportunities for fishing and whitewater rafting. A variety of hiking trails are offered throughout the forest, along with ample opportunities to spot native wildlife within the park's Trinity Alps, North Fork, Siskiyou, and Yolla-Bolly wilderness regions. Elevation ranges from sea level to heights of 7,000 feet, with more than 1,500 miles of accessible permanent rivers and streams showcased throughout the forest. Camping opportunities are available at Panther Flat Campground, which offers showers, restrooms, and drinking water.
1330 Bayshore Way, Eureka, CA 95501, Phone: 707-442-1721
15.Tolowa Dunes State Park
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Tolowa Dunes State Park is a California State Park that is located within Del Norte County, encompassing the Lake Earl, Lake Tolowa, and Yontocket regions of California's northern coastline. The 5,000-acre park is named for the area's indigenous Tolowa people and is accessible via Highway 101, located just north of Crescent City. It protects some of California's most undisturbed wetlands habitats, home to a large variety of migrating seabird species and native plant life. The ancient sand dune complex also offers a variety of visitor activities, including salmon and trout fishing, whale and marine life watching opportunities, and a ride-in horseback riding camp. Primitive campsites are also offered at two campground facilities throughout the park.
Kellogg Rd, Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-465-7335
16.Brother Jonathan Cemetery
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Brother Jonathan Cemetery commemorates the lives lost on July 30, 1865 aboard the sidewheeler vessel Brother Jonathan, which was headed from San Francisco to Portland, Oregon. Conflicting facts surround the reasons for the vessel's sinking, which left only 19 survivors aboard a single lifeboat. The ship was carrying a number of political and entertainment dignitaries at the time of its sinking, including the company of a traveling circus. It was also holding freshly-minted military payroll coins that convert to an amount in the millions in modern currency. Today, the site contains the final resting places of 170 of the ship's crew and passengers, with a public memorial dedicated to their loss located at Point St. George's Reef.
S Pebble Beach Dr, Crescent City, CA 95531
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17.Northcoast Marine Mammal Center
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Northcoast Marine Mammal Center is a marine life conservation and rehabilitation organization that was originally founded in 1984 by Dr. Dennis Wood. In 1989, the organization opened its current public animal hospital and rehabilitation facility, constructed in cooperation with the California Conservation Corps. The facility tends to up to 100 injured animals annually, responding to reports of distressed animals along the greater Northern California coastal region. Most facility operations are conducted by a volunteer staff, with a public gift shop and information center facility available for visitors to learn more about the organization's work and operations. Public tax-exempt donations are accepted at the gift shop for visitors wishing to contribute to the organization's annual funding.
424 Howe Drive, Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-951-4722
18.Point St. George Beach
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Point St. George Beach is a rocky promontory that is located approximately three miles north of Crescent City, overseen as a state-operated public beach facility near Tolowa Dunes State Park. The point is the former site of the keeper's quarters for the St. George Reef Lighthouse, which was decommissioned in 1995 but remains at its former site six miles offshore along the Dragon Rocks. The lighthouse is in the process of being restored for visitor helicopter tours, remaining one of California's tallest lighthouses to this day. Surfing, fishing, bird and whale watching, tide pooling, and beachcombing are offered at the beach, which is conveniently accessible from Pebble Beach Drive. Well-behaved dogs are permitted at the beach on leashes with owner supervision.
4355 N Pebble Beach Dr, Crescent City, CA 95531
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19.Elk Valley Casino
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Elk Valley Casino is a Native American-owned casino in Crescent City that is open 24 hours a day, offering more than 23,000 square feet of casino gaming space. More than 300 Vegas-style slot machines are offered, in amounts ranging from pennies to dollars per play. Poker games and tournaments are offered at the casino's Deck facility, which has been a host of World Series of Poker satellite events. Blackjack tables are available daily at noon, along with a full lineup of bingo games presented regularly. American bar fare is served at the casino's Full House Bar and Grill, including a variety of shareable appetizers, sandwiches and burgers, and sea and land entrees. Breakfast is also served daily at the restaurant, with favorites such as pancakes, egg scrambles, and full country breakfasts available.
2500 Howland Hill Rd, Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-464-1020
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20.Redwood Sightseeing Tours
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Redwood Sightseeing Tours is a touring company that provides the region's best opportunities to see spectacular old-growth redwoods within Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park. The company is operated by former seasonal rangers at the park with extensive knowledge of the region and its trees. A number of tour opportunities are available throughout the year during the morning and afternoon hours, including a Wake Up and Smell the Redwoods morning tour that offers participants a light breakfast and an Ultimate Redwoods Experience Tour that serves a group lunch. Tours last between three and five hours and take visitors on foot through beautiful old-growth regions, with history and biology explained by experienced tour guides.
1141-777, US-101, Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-677-8464
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© SeaQuake Brewing
SeaQuake Brewing is Crescent City's premiere craft brewery, opened to the public in July of 2016 after several years of experimentation with the brewing process on its owners' part. The brewery strives to craft ales that reflect the area's coastal heritage, operating a 15-barrel brewhouse designed by Global Stainless Systems. The brewery's public tap room and restaurant is open to the public Tuesdays through Saturdays, offering tastings and pours of its flagship craft brews, including its CPA Coastal Pale Ale, Space Sailor IPA, Wicked Aunt Tammy Double IPA, and Chadman Belgian Blonde Ale. A wide variety of coastal American fare is served at lunch and dinner, including burgers, pizzas, fish tacos, and shareable appetizers.
400 Front St, Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-465-4444
22.Chart Room Restaurant
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Chart Room Restaurant is a Crescent City seafood restaurant that has become a local institution, housed within a converted marine store in the Crescent City Harbor. The casual waterfront dining restaurant has been voted as the area's best seafood restaurant by local reader's choice awards, also honored for its famous clam chowder. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner menus are available daily, serving up homestyle seafood favorites such as fish and chips platters, clam strip and shrimp baskets, and crab cake and fish fillet sandwiches. Soup and seafood combination platters are also served, along with a wide selection of burgers and traditional hot sandwiches such as French dip sandwiches. A full children's menu is offered, along with a full shareable appetizer menu and a selection of draft beers and house wines.
130 Anchor Way, Crescent City, CA 95531, Phone: 707-464-5993
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22 Best Things to Do in Crescent City, California
- Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, Photo: Courtesy of Rex Wholster - Fotolia.com
- Stout Grove, Photo: Courtesy of David - Fotolia.com
- Howland Hill Road, Photo: Courtesy of Tomasz Zajda - Fotolia.com
- Battery Point Lighthouse, Photo: Courtesy of Dustin - Fotolia.com
- Crescent Beach, Photo: Courtesy of Viacheslav Sidorov - Fotolia.com
- Ocean World, Photo: Courtesy of hhelene - Fotolia.com
- Crescent Trail Rides, Photo: Courtesy of Azaliya (Elya Vatel) - Fotolia.com
- Rumiano Cheese Company, Photo: Courtesy of sandipruel - Fotolia.com
- Boy Scout Big Tree Trail, Photo: Courtesy of alpegor - Fotolia.com
- Del Norte County History Museum, Photo: Del Norte County History Museum
- Pebble Beach, Photo: Courtesy of photogolfer - Fotolia.com
- Florence Keller County Park and Campground, Photo: Courtesy of Aran - Fotolia.com
- Castle Rock National Wildlife Refuge, Photo: Courtesy of asfloro - Fotolia.com
- Six Rivers National Forest, Photo: Courtesy of Zack Frank - Fotolia.com
- Tolowa Dunes State Park, Photo: Courtesy of Andrey Prokhorov - Fotolia.com
- Brother Jonathan Cemetery, Photo: Courtesy of sean lea - Fotolia.com
- Northcoast Marine Mammal Center, Photo: Courtesy of Colin Mileman - Fotolia.com
- Point St. George Beach, Photo: Courtesy of liandstudio - Fotolia.com
- Elk Valley Casino, Photo: Courtesy of Fotolia.com
- Redwood Sightseeing Tours, Photo: Courtesy of Rex Wholster - Fotolia.com
- SeaQuake Brewing, Photo: SeaQuake Brewing
- Chart Room Restaurant, Photo: Chart Room Restaurant
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of AlessandraRC - Fotolia.com