Since 2017, I've documented unique, authentic love stories across the Pacific Northwest and beyond.
Part of me is hesitant to share this blog post… because the Lost Coast is truly one of the most magical and unique places I have ever visited on the West Coast. Nevertheless, it feels selfish to keep this hidden treasure all to myself. So, allow me to introduce you to: the Lost Coast.
The lost coast is a stretch of isolated, barren, beautiful coastline about an hour south of Eureka, California. Eureka, in fact, is also very likely the last place you’ll be able to find any modern amenities (that is, if you’re coming from the North… it’ll probably be Garberville if you’re coming from the South!)
This “lost” coastline is at least an hour away from any modern amenities, but the perfect place to be if you’re looking for things like: peace and quiet, stargazing, nature, and magic.
My husband introduced me to the Lost Coast. He called it his favorite place; his happy place. Once I took it all in for myself, I couldn’t agree more.
There’s something about the feeling of standing on the long stretch of dark, sandy beaches that makes you feel connected to the world.
And, beyond the Lost Coast itself, we found the most beautiful, magical, incredible Airbnb nestled in outskirts of a palace called Petrolia. This place is one of the very few main little towns (or, according to Google, “unincorporated communities”) on the Lost Coast.
It’s a tiny bit of humanity in an otherwise barren landscape. Petrolia is in Humboldt County (if you’re thinking Redwoods, yes, they’re just over an hour away). At an elevation of 121 feet above sea level, Petrolia sits just above the epic Lost Coast and is home to definitively the best place to stay on the Lost Coast: The Lost Coast Tower, Petrolia.
This incredible lookout tower-esque hideaway requires a short hike in and is totally remote. Once you climb up the steps to this hideaway, you likely won’t see another human in sight. It’s an introvert’s dream come true!
Photos from Airbnb.
And when I say hike up, I mean it. It’s straight up about ¼ mile of stairs to reach this lookout tower. Moral of the story? Pack light or have a partner who doesn’t mind taking 4 trips with multiple bags like a pack-mule! But, what can I say, sometimes the things most worth having take a little extra effort. This place is worth every bead of sweat it takes to get to.
Photos from Airbnb.
One of my favorite things about this place? An outdoor, copper bathtub that overlooks the rolling hills. If you’re anything like me, you’re already imagining sipping on wine and eating cheese butt-naked under the stars. In my case, I wasn’t just imagining. That’s exactly what I did. At sunset. With a Pinot Noir. It was HEAVENLY.
Beyond the magical tub, this Airbnb is generally just quaint, rustic, and isolated – yet has everything you need: a bed, reading nooks, a landline phone, a kitchen, hot water and a shower, and all the privacy in the world.
I’ll let you check out the Airbnb listing to see the rest of it! (I enjoyed it so much I forgot to get many pictures myself!)
Now, let’s get back to the LOST COST, which is what I came here to talk to you about. In the spirit of the remote nature of this magical landscape, I shot all my photos almost exclusively analog.
These film scans only do the place so much justice: I highly recommend you plan a trip out to see it for yourself. Or, better yet…
(and definitely hire me to play tour guide and photographer/videographer!!)
PS: After we left the Lost Coast, content but ready for civilization again, we stayed a couple nights at another magical spot in California: The Benbow Historic Inn, which felt like it was straight out of a Jane Austen novel.
Nestled almost randomly off Highway 101 in Garberville, CA the Benbow Inn is a slice of simpler times. There’s vintage furnishings, a lovely restaurant and bar, and even a little riverside beach. This was the perfect place to celebrate our first wedding anniversary and it would make the most magical wedding venue, honeymoon spot, or calming stopover. Don’t miss this!
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Since 2017, Sabrina of Lilli Productions has documented unique, authentic love stories across the Pacific Northwest and beyond.