Thursday, September 29, 2022

Where To Stay When Visiting Sonoma Wine Country

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Snap Photos Of Locations From Hitchcocks The Birds In Bodega

California Wine Country is Back! Its time to visit Sonoma again #wine #Sonoma #Napa

Just a few miles inland from Bodega Bay is the tiny hamlet of Bodega, home of the schoolhouse that served as the filming location for The Birds, Alfred Hitchcocks 1963 thriller.

Originally called the Potter Schoolhouse, the house was built in 1973. Today it is a private residence, so if you visit to snap photos, be respectful. Nearby is the picturesque St. Teresa of Avila Church, which also featured in the movie.

The schoolhouse, on a foggy day

In Bodega Bay, the Tides Wharf Restaurant also served as a location for The Birds: the restaurant scenes and the boat dock scenes were filmed here. Its a great place to dine, and birdwatching is popular at both Bodega and Bodega Bay, although you likely wont witness any avian attacks.

Nights In Wine Country

Hi all. My wife and I are planning a road trip up the PCH before spending a few nights in SF and 3 nights in wine country. We’ve booked all 3 nights at El Pueblo Inn in Sonoma. We thought Sonoma looked like a nice town to stay in and use as our home base to explore both Sonoma and Napa wineries.

However, I’m starting to build out a list of wineries we might want to visit based on suggestions I’ve gotten, and it seems I have a number of wineries in Napa and a number of wineries further North . We have a few closer to Sonoma , but I’m wondering if we wouldn’t be better served to rebook one of our nights in Healdsburg or somewhere similar. If we stay in Sonoma all three nights, figured we would spend one day closer to Sonoma, one day driving further north, and one day over by Yountville/Napa. Is that too much time in the car?

Thanks for all the advice/opinions/reviews you guys share.

Meritage Resort And Spa

The Meritage Resort and Spa is a Tuscan-inspired wine country getaway with 502 rooms, suites and vacation rental rooms. Guest rooms have high ceilings, luxurious bathrooms and plush beds. Ask for a room with a balcony overlooking the vineyard so that you can enjoy a delicious breakfast with a view. Spa Terra at the Meritage Resort is a unique 22,000-square-foot spa located in the Estate Cave 40 feet underground. The spa is the ultimate hideaway for couples with its 12 treatment rooms, lounges, whirlpools and water walls, all underground. Siena Restaurant has a beautiful outdoor patio and an indoor dining room with murals depicting the Palio di Siena horse race. Rooms start at $209 per night.

875 Bordeaux Way, Napa, California 94558, Phone: 844-283-4588

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Stop By Sonoma Traintown Railroad

TrainTown Sonoma is fun, and not just for kids! We love train rides, no matter how short, and Sonoma TrainTown Railroad gets a spot on the itinerary every time we visit Sonoma. It is conveniently located just about one mile from Sonoma Plaza.

The 10-acre amusement park features a 1:4 scale railroad and four miles of track. The founder, Stanley Frank, reportedly built much of the railroad himself, with painstaking attention to detail, and TrainTown is considered one of the best miniature railroads in the USA.

TrainTown is a fun attraction in Sonoma!

Take the 20-minute train ride winds through tunnels, past waterfalls and homes, and over bridges, and makes a stop at Lakeview, a miniature town where you will also find a petting zoo, home to many rescued animals.

The park also features a lovely carousel, a Ferris wheel, and a few other rides, mainly suitable for kids.

Sonoma TrainTown Railroad is generally open from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. everyday in the summer and from Friday through Sunday at other times of the year. The park is closed when its raining.

General admission to the park is free, and you pay for the train ride and other rides individually. At the time of writing, the train ride costs $8.25 per person, per ride.

Sonoma And Sonoma Valley

19 Best Sonoma Wineries to Visit this Winter

Sonoma is a small town in the Sonoma Valley and despite only being 75 kilometres from San Francisco it is truly a different world. A recommended way to experience the joys of the town and the Sonoma Valley is to take a drive along Highway 12 where wineries line the road and are just begging to be stopped at.

Along the route Landmark Vineyards is set in the foothills of the Mayacama Mountains and offers food pairing and wine seminars while at The Imagery Estate Winery they have an on-site art gallery where you can peruse some great works while sampling the delicious wines. Californian sunshine and a glass of wine make perfect companions and at the Valley of the Moon Winery you can relax outside and enjoy the best of both worlds. Other wineries to consider in the area are Arrowood Vineyards and Winery, Chateau St. Jean, Gloria Ferrer Caves and Vineyard, Ravenswood, Loxton, Benziger and Gundlach-Bundschu.

Under a canopy of shady and majestic trees the Plaza in Sonoma is brimming with beautifully preserved buildings waiting to reveal their secrets. Surrounding the Plaza there are numerous chic boutiques, superb restaurants and quaint shops all just waiting to be visited. A short distance away from Sonoma in the village of Boyes Hot Springs is a Michelin starred restaurant as well as the springs that the town is named after.

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Go Birding At Doran Regional Park In Bodega Bay

If you enjoy birding, do the flat and easy Bird Walk Coastal Access Trail in Doran Regional Park. The walk is about 1.2 miles along a saltwater marsh. It goes around two large freshwater ponds, and along the walk you may see waterfowl as well as land birds.

A view from the bird walk trail

Even if you do not see many birds, the walk is scenic and relaxing. The trail also connects to Doran Regional Park, which offers recreational opportunities such as sand play, strolling on the sand, picnicking, sunbathing, and kite flying.

Doran Regional Park is open from 7 a.m. until sunset daily. Dogs are allowed on leash. At the time of writing, vehicle parking is $7.00.

Hike In A State Or Regional Park

Weve mentioned some parks in this article, but if you enjoy the outdoors there are many other parks in Sonoma County that offer great hiking and other outdoor recreation. Enjoy a variety of wildflowers in the spring and leaf color on deciduous trees in the fall.

A beautiful mature oak along a hiking trail in Petaluma

  • Trione-Annadel State Park in Santa Rosa is a wonderful place to hike, bike, or go trail riding. Lake Ilsanjo offers fishing. This park is known for spring wildflowers.
  • Kruse Rhododendron State Natural Reserve is a must-visit in May, when the pink flowers are in full bloom. The reserve is located in Gualala.
  • Salt Point State Park, in Jenner, features a spectacular rocky coastline and miles of hiking trails. You can walk through a pygmy forest, go fishing or scuba diving, and enjoy picnic facilities.
  • The ridge-top trails at Helen Putnam Regional Park in Petaluma offer panoramic views of the rolling hills. You can go hiking, biking, or horse riding in the park.

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Grab Lunch On The Sonoma Plaza

If youre doing lunch on your own, the girl & the fig;is famously Wine Country, right on the Sonoma Plaza.

Sondra Bernstein is the proprietor of this Michelin Bib award-winning destination restaurant, giving you a charming, cottage-style café with a lavishly landscaped hideaway patio in the back. You will also find historic buildings on the plaza in the;Sonoma State Historic Park,;including the northernmost California mission.

Settle in and relax over mixed seasonal heirloom radishes from the figs garden. Enjoy dishes like the savory pork belly sandwich brightened with fennel aioli, apples and cabbage on brioche with a side of frites; or wild mushroom ravioli plump with house-made ricotta, truffles, sweet onion purée, cipollini onions, and ancho cress.

New Face Covering Guidance

Travel Guide Sonoma County, California, United States – Visit Sonoma Wine Country, California

Sonoma County recently joined six Bay Area counties that reinstated an indoor mask order, effective August 3. The new order;requires all individuals to wear face coverings when indoors in workplaces and public settings, with limited exemptions, and recommends that businesses make face coverings available to individuals entering the business. We ask visitors to respect these guidelines, and join with us in helping keep each other and our communities safe and healthy. Visit our resource page for more info.

Additionally, some businesses may have their own protocols in place for the safety and well-being of their staff and visitors. You may find these posted at the entrance of these businesses, or on their website or on social media pages. We kindly ask visitors to respect the wishes and policies that businesses have in place.

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Best Segway Tour: Sonoma County Wine Segway Tour

You might think that Segway tours are just for cities, but these little two-wheeled vehicles are a lovely way to see some of Sonomas gorgeous countryside, as well. Start your day with a quick Segway lesson from your tour guide and then zoom off to the first of two separate winery visits, plus a tour and tasting at a local artisanal cheese factory. A picnic lunch with a spread of locally-sourced goodies is included. And yes, the Segways have some storage space enough for two to three wine bottles, should you want to do a bit of buying!

Best Bike Tour: Sonoma Valley Wine Country Bike Tour

If bicycles are more your style, consider this tour, which winds through a handful of Sonomas loveliest wineries on a 12-mile-ish circular route that starts and ends in downtown Sonoma. Bikes are provided, as is a tasty picnic lunch, and a tour guide will join you to point out locations of interest and explain some of the region’s history and the winemaking process. Should you wish to purchase wine at any of your stops, transportation can be arranged, or your tour guide can help you arrange to ship it back home.

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Tour Other Sonoma State Historic Park Sites

Along the north side of Sonoma Plaza, you can tour four other Sonoma State Historic Park sites: the Blue Wing Inn, the Toscano Hotel & Kitchen, the Sonoma Barracks, and the Servants Quarters. The park sites are discrete, but collectively offer a great look back into Sonomas history.

Interpretive sign at Sonoma State Historic Park

The Blue Wing Inn is a long adobe building that dates from the Gold Rush era. The Toscano Hotel building dates from the mid 19th century, but it became a hotel in 1886. The family-owned operation ran all the way until 1955.

The two-story Servants Quarters adobe is part of La Casa Grande, General Vallejos first home in Sonoma. The family moved to a new estate in the early 1850s. The main home was unfortunately destroyed in a fire in 1867.

The Sonoma Barracks houses historical exhibits in several museum rooms. Here you will also find the park bookstore and gift shop. The buildings make for a nice wander, with several interpretive plaques offering information.

View historical exhibits at the Sonoma Barracks

Park sites are generally open from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. everyday, other than major holidays. An admission fee of $3.00 per person covers all Sonoma State Historic Park sites for the day.

Settle In And Stay A While

The 11 Best Wineries in Sonoma County

Wherever the night takes you, youll have plenty of cozy, comfortable lodging options nearby. In Bodega Bay,;sit by a wood-burning fire at the Bodega Bay Lodge and keep warm as you take in the ocean views out your window.

If youve made your way to Jenner for dinner at the Rivers End, stick around for its;luxe unplugged guestrooms. Kitted out like rustic-chic cabins, each room features a gas fireplace and a private deck with views of both the river and the ocean. And in Guerneville, the guestrooms at;Applewood Inn and Spa;are flooded in warm colors and firelight, and some even feature private hot tubs.

No matter where you end your trip, chances are youll wake up looking at winter in a whole new way. Whether you’re coming for the holidays or after the new year, check the Sonoma County Calendar of Events;for current festivals, wine events, and other happenings. Find lodging, restaurant, wine tasting deals here.

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Best Combo Tour: Small Group Muir Woods And Sonoma Wine Tour

This packed, full-day tour starts with a pickup at your San Francisco hotel in a biofuel bus, which will take you across the Golden Gate Bridge to the stunning Muir Woods for a gentle morning hike. From there, youll zip up to Sonoma for guided tastings at several wineries and lunch at one of Sonoma Plazas many delicious restaurant offerings. On the way back into town to drop you back at your hotel, the bus stops at the Marin Headlands for a spectacular view of San Francisco over the water.

Wander Sonoma Botanical Garden In Glen Ellen

If you enjoy gardens, you will definitely want to set aside a few hours to explore the Sonoma Botanical Garden in Glen Ellen. The garden is focused on Asian and California native plants. Young plants, nursery grown from wild collected seed, were planted on the hillsides to start the garden.

The Sonoma Botanical Garden makes for a serene wander

Originally named Quarryhill Botanical Garden,the garden continued to be populated with plants developed from annual collecting tours to East Asia. Near the information center is the Chinese Heritage Rose Garden, worth a stroll if you visit during bloom.

The botanical garden features numerous mature species of Asian trees and flowering shrubs, and there are two large ponds with water lilies. An accessible path goes around the heart of the garden, and more paths let you explore the outer parts. Spring and fall are particularly great times to visit.

A tiger lily at the garden

The Sonoma Botanical Garden is open Wednesdays through Mondays, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years. General adult admission, at the time of writing, is $12.00 per person per visit.

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Wine Country Vacations: Auberge Du Soleil

Auberge du Soleil is set in the heart of Napa Valley, surrounded by rolling hills and vineyards. The hotel has a beautiful outdoor pool, Auberge Spa and an incredible outdoor sculpture garden. Terraced guest rooms and suites feature Mediterranean-inspired decor, original contemporary art and private outdoor terraces for relaxing with a view.

The 7,000-square-foot Auberge Spa utilizes ingredients from California’s Wine Country. Arrive early for your treatment to enjoy the signature water ritual: a soak in three springs overlooking the Napa Valley vineyards. Couples can book the luxurious Melisse spa suite with a fireplace, private outdoor garden and its own hot spring. Rooms start at $700 per night.

180 Rutherford Hill Road, Rutherford, California 94573, Phone: 707-963-1211

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Napa Valley: Where To Stay Now

Discover Sonoma Wineries HD 2012

Solage Resort

The most exciting feature of Solage’s recently completed $30 million dollar renovation is Picobar, a chill, open-air pool bar that gives off some serious resort-in-Mexico vibes. While looking out at Solage’s picture-perfect 130-foot pool , you can sip tequila and mezcal-based cocktails along with whipped avocado dip, queso made from Cowgirl Creamery cheese, and several iterations of tacos that chef Gustavo Rios lovingly refers to as “head tilts.” There’s even a crispy avocado version for vegetarians.

All the resort’s rooms have been updated and there are some new cottage-style suites, too. They’re light-filled, airy, luxurious, and cozy. Guests of the Estate Suites get one day of complimentary cabana access, a set of bikes for cruising around Calistoga, and a Mercedes-Benz to use throughout their stay. Lastly, Solage’s signature restaurant Solbar has a swankier and larger outdoor lounge, making the choice between Solbar and Picobar a most difficult one . // 755 Silverado Trail. N. , aubergeresorts.com

Calistoga Motor Lodge

The theme carries on through beautiful, wood-beamed ceilings and tiled floors, and the original cocktails, with names like Liviero and Pesca Perfecto, will whisk you away to the Amalfi Coast.

Milliken Creek Inn

Bardessono Hotel & Spa

Dr. Wilkinson’s Backyard Resort & Mineral Springs

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Wine Tasting And Dining Al Fresco

What says summer in Sonoma County like outdoor dining and wine tasting? It truly couldnt be a better time to;wine taste and eat outdoors;because of the comfortable weather that Sonoma County enjoys throughout much of the year.;Below is just a sampling of some of the great places to dine and taste outdoors around Sonoma County.;

Explore Goat Rock Beach In Jenner

Goat Rock Beach is one of the most beautiful beaches along the Sonoma Coast. Located near the mouth of the Russian River, the sandy beach is easy to access, and a popular destination on nice weather days for both locals and visitors.

Take a leisurely stroll on the long beach, to savor the beauty of the rock formations. Majestic Goat Rock lies just off shore. You may see birds at the water line, looking for food, or a whale spouting in the ocean. The surf here is beautiful as well.

Gorgeous Goat Rock Beach

In the summer, you will see lots of adult harbor seals and their pups at Goat Rock Beach. Be sure to observe them from a distance of 50 yards or more.

Bring a windcheater, because it can be cool and breezy by the Pacific Ocean any time of the year.

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