Tomales Bay - Things to Do in San Francisco

Go on a tour of beautiful Tomales Bay with California travel expert Veronica Hill of in this episode of "California Travel Tips."

Located 30 miles north of San Francisco, along scenic Highway 1, Tomales Bay stretches 15 miles from Bodega Bay to Point Reyes Station. Marshall boasts just 400 residents, and is dotted with weathering dairy farms, rustic oyster stands, and charming waterfront inns.

One of the best is Nicks' Cove, a cluster of 1930s cottages that has quickly become one of San Francisco's hottest weekend escapes.

"This has been and continues to be the place that people come up Highway 1, and they stop and they stay and they eat and they drink and have a really good time," says Dena Grunt, general manager.

We're staying in Bandit's Bungalow, a two-bedroom waterfront cottage that's perfect for families. Not only does it have a fully stocked bar, but there are heated bathroom floors, a private deck, and a wood-burning stove. Your stay comes with a welcome delivery of their famous BBQd oysters in the afternoon, followed by a delicious continental breakfast in the morning.

Nick's Cove has 12 different cottages to choose from. Five sit on the waterfront, and seven sit just across the highway in a eucalyptus grove. If you can't stay the night, be sure to make a reservation for dinner. Executive chef Austin Perkins, an alum of the Michelin-starred Cyrus in Healdsburg, serves up a delicious seafood menu using the bounty of local farms. Start out with an oyster sampler, then dig in to Austin's decadent crab mac n cheese.

While you're here, the great outdoors beckons. You can hop in a fishing boat, go on a kayaking tour of the bay, or cycle down Highway 1. Foodies shouldn't miss Hog Island Oyster Company, where you can shuck and smoke your own Tomales Bay oysters along the waterfront. One of our favorite stops is Cowgirl Creamery in Point Reyes Station. Housed in a restored barn below the bay, Cowgirl Creamery is celebrated for its artisan California cheese, served in top restaurants throughout the state. Foodies flock to this charming cheese shop to stock up on fresh-made fromage, take a class, or take part in their weekly cheese-making tours.

After a day of exploring Tomales Bay, head back to the comforts of Nick's Cove, where you can head out to the pier and enjoy the beautiful California sunset.

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