Serene, Eco-Friendly Hotel on Banks of Sacramento River
Gaia Shasta Hotel strives to maintain harmony with its natural environment. Out front, desert brush borders a lagoon filled with swans and colorful koi fish, and the Sacramento River flows by just steps away. Gaia's commitment to eco-friendly practices is evident throughout the hotel. Natural spa treatments incorporate herbs and elderberries grown onsite, and tubular skylights help to save energy by diffusing sunlight throughout the interior.
Guest rooms are decorated in neutral earth tones, and picture windows afford ample views of the Sacramento River and surrounding woodlands. Outdoors, a relaxing whirlpool spa is purified using natural saline instead of chlorine or other chemicals. The onsite Lotus Spa offers invigorating body wraps and hot-stone massages for weary backs or stressed-out pet rocks.
At the hotel's restaurant, Woodside Grill, chef Gregory McChristian prepares Cajun chicken fettuccine ($14) and hand-cut Woodside fillet ($28) culled from ranches in the area. Breakfast options include french toast ($8) made with a rustic baguette. Adhering to Gaia's earth-friendly, socially conscious mission, the eatery composts leftovers and regularly donates food to local families in need.
Anderson, California: Quiet Town Amid Sacramento Valley's Natural Grandeur
Situated along the Sacramento River in northern California's Sacramento Valley, Anderson is an ideal outpost for exploring nearby lakes, waterfalls, and backcountry trails. Kayaking and whitewater rafting are popular on the river, and skiers flock to Mount Shasta, located about an hour's drive away. Closer to Anderson, the bustling city of Redding boasts authentic Mexican restaurants, historical museums, and Sundial Bridge, which spans the river and rivals Andre the Giant's wristwatch as one of the world's largest timepieces.