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Mendocino Beano: California’s Legendary Emerald Triangle Eyes Cultivating Cannabis Travelers

Mendocino County campaigns to tap into $1.7 billion U.S. cannabis tourism niche.




The Mendocino County Tourism Commission, the official destination marketing organization for Mendocino County in California, is hoping to tap into the estimated $1.7 billion dollar cannabis tourism industry by promoting its legendary cannabis fields and cannabis-forward outlook on its leading cash crop. PHOTO COURTESY VISIT MENDOCINO COUNTY.

“Mendocino beano is a reference to the dilated pupils you would typically see in the faces of people who attended the various art & music events in that Californian town.”

— Ree, Zappa Terminology Google Group

The budding of the cannabis traveler is quickly cultivating cannabis-friendly tourism offerings, with California vying to become a must-sample destination for its renown cannabis. Cannabis tourism is now an estimated $1.7 billion industry, according to Forbes, with California’s “bud basket” ripe for the picking.

Just as the sublime vineyards of Santa Barbara and Napa counties have mined California gold as travel hotspots, California’s legendary Emerald Triangle — comprising Mendocino, Trinity and Humbolt counties — is now opening its doors and fields to cannabis travelers. Historic California cities like Oakland also see mixing local color with cannabis is a profitable blend.

Mendocino County’s official tourism commission now markets cannabis destinations and tours through its website and its Visit Mendocino County program. Located two hours north of San Francisco and two-and-a-half hours west of Sacramento, Mendocino County is a getaway destination for residents in the areas and the millions who visit the Golden Gate’s hillside splendor. Now, Mendocino wants to draw cannabis travelers to the sweet air of the region’s unique terroir and diverse microclimates that nurtures some of the world’s finest herb.

The Bohemian Chemist

“With 68% of Americans supporting adult use and half of millennials noting access to legal recreational cannabis as important when choosing a vacation destination, luring this new market is key to smoking the competition,” said Travis Scott, executive director of Visit Mendocino County.


Like wine lovers, Cannabis lovers want alluring experiences

Whether seeking to reconnect, ramp up wellness, boost creativity or chill in an ancient grove of redwoods, Mendocino County is a laid-backed excursion for travelers are seeking more than just a novel dispensary. Like the wine enthusiast hooked on VIP vineyard tours, estate tastings, wine education and food and beverage pairings, cannabis lovers want experiences that are equally alluring, especially paired when with luxury offerings that differentiate a destination.

Tours take visitors behind the emerald curtain for an inside look into the legacy cultivation and offer schooling on what makes this region’s green so spectacular. The Mendocino Experience offers a four-hour tour, guided by skippers who won’t get you shipwrecked while you toke in the sights. The tour dips deep into the Redwood Valley with a visit to an operating sun-grown cannabis farm and heirloom cultivation nursery. Cannabis travelers can plant-touch beside master growers and enjoy an afternoon of bud-tasting by the koi ponds while wandering among the crops for the ultimate Instagram post.

The Yokayo Ranch, set on 40 gracious acres outside of Ukiah, CA, besides being a working farm, doubles as a cannabis-forward private retreat with the slogan “Leave all judgments at the door – unwind, reset and reconnect.” Three types of lodgings – a 1950s Main House, Bunk House and Pool Cabanas – host a cozy number of just 29 guests. The farm retreat offers cannabis fields to roam, a salt water pool and plenty of room to smoke and saunter.

Hospitality engages hemp

Many of the region’s hotels have taken a cannabis-forward outlook on hospitality. The MacCallum House, set in the village of Mendocino, offers an “Everything But the Bud” package that includes all the accessories for imbibing — along with delivery service — and the freedom to enjoy it in the hotel’s elevated hot tub. The Thatcher Hotel lets guests flow with the flower among friends in its alfresco lounge, available next door at MendoCann dispensary that offers top-grade local green.

Other key regional romps include a visit to the Bohemian Chemist at the Madrones hotel in wine-centric Anderson Valley. Set in a vintage Art Deco apothecary, the quaint and curious cannabis shop’s potions focus on sun-grown cannabis. For a collective high, Kure Wellness’ three outlets in Ukiah lets you bask in Mendocino’s best in a shaded smoke lounge.

Medocino’s County is the largest cannabis-producing region in the United States. Not surprisingly, cannabis is Mendocino County’s top cash crop, ringing in at $131 million with 290 acres of licensed cultivation. For more information from Visit Mendocino County about its sweetest cannabis destinations, visit here.




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