An ever-changing community, Arcata is home to Humboldt State University, with students making up nearly half of the city’s total residents. The town caps the growth of chain restaurants, but exceeds the amount of natural recreation. One part boat ramp to the Mad River, one part beach, Mad River Beach County Park offers a number of opportunities. The area is considered one of the area’s best for fishing, beachcombing and picnics. The river, meanwhile, provides an excellent location for kayaks and canoes.