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Where to Get a Shot of Coffee Culture in Northern California

A caffeine fix, a break from the go-go-go lifestyle of backpacking, a ringside look at the local culture – there are so many reasons we love stopping into neighborhood cafés wherever our travels take us. And here in Northern California, there are endless ways to make a run-of-the-mill refueling stop into a one-of-a-kind experience: from no-frills cups of Joe at corner mainstays, to sweet concoctions in exotic neighborhoods, to artful pours of espresso at high-class hideaways, here a few of our favorites spots for coffee and culture.

Near Sacramento, it's Autumn on Apple Hill

It's mid-October, but it still feels like summer in Sacramento. This shouldn't, perhaps, be too much of a surprise: about 80% of days around California's state capital are sunny, often in defiance of the season. But I've come here today to do something specifically, traditionally, quintessentially autumnal, and so it's taking me a while to wrap my head around the heat: who dresses for a day of apple-picking, pie-tasting, cider sipping, and pumpkin patching wearing shorts and a T-shirt and SPF 50?

Artists in Residence: Chris Bauman at HI-Point Montara

From National Park land to downtown streetscapes, hillside perches to coastal lighthouses, HI USA hostels are located in some of the most beautiful settings Northern California has to offer. So perhaps it's not surprising that so many staff members across our hostel network are talented (and prolific) artists: they've got a lot of inspiration to work with!

101 Ways to Recreate in the Marin Headlands - Part II

The year 2016 will mark the 100th anniversary of the National Parks Service (NPS), and though we're still a couple years away from the centennial, the folks at the NPS are already excited! As a lead-up to the organization's big birthday, our friends from the Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA) have put together a list of 101 Ways to Recreate in the Golden Gate.

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