Sonoma Valley is a mecca for all things wine and food. It’s a hub for outdoor adventures. An epicenter for cozy bed and breakfasts, luxury spas, art galleries and boutique shopping. Basically, Sonoma Valley is the perfect place to visit for every kind of traveler - no matter their interests, age, or gender.
Since it is such a popular destination for so many variations of travelers, that means everything has been covered. You want a romantic weekend filled with wine and gourmet food - there are countless possibilities out there. If you want to spend your weekend exploring all of the outdoor activities in the valley - there are endless resources for you as well.
Sonoma Valley is in one of the most perfect spots for easy access from the many cities that surround it. It stretches from San Pablo Bay to Santa Rosa, and includes many cities in Sonoma County.
Located an easy 45 miles from San Francisco, Sonoma Valley is easily accessed by car and bus. Driving should take you no more than an hour and 15 minutes without stopping and is a straight shot on Highway 101. If you’re taking public transportation, hop on the Golden Gate Transit to San Rafael, then transfer to the Sonoma County Transit to get to Sonoma Valley. The full schedule and guide on the Sonoma County Transit website.
An Inn 2 Remember is a raved-about B&B only a block from Sonoma Plaza, loved for its country-chic decor and warm vibes. The six rooms of the Inn have private porches and fireplaces, plus a shared outdoor hot tub and casino.
Gaige House in Glen Ellen offers an intimate getaway experience. The 31 room guest house is a luxurious wine-country B&B with a full-service spa. Select rooms have a private patio with creek views. Every evening, Gaige House provides a free wine and cheese tasting. Fresh baked cookies are available and the B&B has a daily full buffet breakfast, as well.
Bungalows 313 is a small B&B in downtown Sonoma. They have just six bungalows, each styled differently, so you know it won’t be packed with tourists. The bungalows are in a prime spot, right on the Sonoma bike path, making it easy to get around Sonoma.
To go beyond the well-known wineries, take a trip to VJB Cellars in Kenwood. This lesser known restaurant/winery has loads of options for drinking and dining. Try some wine and cheese, wood-fired pizza, and freshly made pasta on the piazza. Grab a gelato from the wine truffle shop, and fill up a to-go jug of wine.
Roy’s Chicago Doggery & Italian Beef is a place you will want to stop for more than 1,000 variations of the hot dog accompanied by more than 50 toppings (hello, homemade pineapple mustard!). It is on the grounds of the Petaluma Livestock Auction Yard, giving it an extra-unique feel.
Besides wine, the Sonoma Valley does something else very well: Mexican food. Taqueria La Hacienda is a local favorite with a cult following. They serve up some of the best margaritas and mole around.
A fantastic way to view Sonoma Valley and all the hardworking hills of vines is coasting on the gentle breezes above in a hot air balloon. It's a lesser-taken path through wine country, gives you the big-picture view and you still get to enjoy the tastes and vibrations of some of the area's best wines.
The Fairmont Sonoma Inn & Mission, an historic place in Boyes Springs, is a gorgeous and uncrowded place to unwind. Even if you are not staying at the Inn, the spa and pool are open to the public with an appointment. They use the naturally occurring hot springs in the area to fill the pools.
There are seemingly countless ways to taste Sonoma Valley through the vines, but the Olive Press gives a lesser known twist. These makers and sellers of award-winning olive oils will serve up tastings and bottles of their own. The Olive Press is the most highly awarded olive oil maker in the nation, having won nearly 600 awards for its oils since 2001.
Glen Ellen’s secret spot, Lake Suttonfield, is only frequented by locals since it doesn’t appear on many maps of the region. Take the main trail through Sonoma Valley Regional Park, then veer onto the East Sutton Lake Trail. This is a great spot for a picnic lunch, or some peace and quiet.
We're pretty sure you already have some idea there are vines and wine in Sonoma Valley, but the length of wineries is deep and the options for tastings plentiful. Signing on for a tour is the perfect way to sample as many crafted flavors as you want and not have to do the map reading or driving to make it happen.