navarro by the sea center

Navarro-by-the-Sea Center

for Riparian and Estuarine Research

Navarro-by-the-Sea Center is a public benefit nonprofit corporation. The specific purposes for which this corporation is organized are: to promote education and interpretive activities of the California State Parks system in the Mendocino County area, support scientific and historic investigations relating to the area, and present these subjects to the public.

Our primary focus since incorporation has been preservation and rehabilitation of the historic Captain Fletcher's Inn (ca. 1865) at the Navarro Beach area of the Navarro River Redwoods State Park. The historic Mill Superintendant's House (ca. 1864) currently serves as our offices, and is also in need of significant upgrades to the potable water and septic systems, foundation repair, and other improvements.

Our goal is to reopen the historic Captain Fletcher's Inn as a visitor center, interpreting the rich cultural and natural history of the Mendocino coast, Navarro River estuary, and the larger Navarro River watershed. The California Cultural and Historical Endowment has generously funded preparation of a Comprehensive Specific Plan for the area, as well as Construction Plans for stabilizing and rehabilitating the historic Inn. See our Current Planning page for details on the work completed as part of the grant from the California Cultural and Historical Endowment.

Navarro Beach is located in Mendocino County, California, near the intersections of Highways 1 and 128. From San Francisco or Eureka, take Highway 101 to Highway 128 near Cloverdale. Then take Highway 128 west to the ocean. At the intersection of Highways 1 and 128, turn south over Navarro Bridge toward Point Arena; then immediately west at the “Coastal Access” sign for Navarro Beach.

captain fletcher inn

Capt. Fletcher's Inn is in the early stages of rehabilitation. It is presently closed to visitors, due to its neglected and vulnerable condition. The building faces Navarro Beach Road, on the south side of the Navarro River. Navarro Beach Road leads west toward the ocean, past Captain Fletcher's Inn (the old Navarro-by-the-Sea Hotel) to the beach and campground at Navarro River Redwoods State Park.

A permanent display board at the site of Capt. Fletcher's Inn provides historic information and photographs for visitor information. The display is a joint effort of The Charles Fletcher Society, the Navarro-by-the-Sea Center, and the California Department of Parks and Recreation.

navarro river mouth

Captain Fletcher, the first European to settle at the mouth of the Navarro River, built the Inn in the 1860's for sailors from the lumber schooners that serviced Navarro Mill (ca. 1861). The sailors often had to wait three days or more while their ships were being loaded at Navarro Landing. For the history of Captain Fletcher's Inn, see our History section by Dr. Hillary Adams.

captain fletcher inn
Navarro Inn ca.1947
Robert J. Lee collection (Parker): 05707

Navarro River Redwoods State Park

Navarro Beach, the historic Captain Fletcher's Inn, and the Navarro Mill Company House are part of Navarro River Redwoods State Park, which starts near Paul Dimmick Wayside Campground. The campground is located about eight miles inland on Highway 128. Navarro River Redwoods State Park follows the river to the sea, where another campground is located. For more information about camping, contact California State Parks or by phone at (707) 937-5804

Save America's Treasures

Captain Fletcher's Inn is an official project of Save America's Treasures which is a public-private partnership between the National Park Service and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.