Sonoma County

A bucolic and blissful area on Sonoma Valley.

Welcome to Sonoma County

Pastoral region best known for dairy farming and the Sonoma Valley wine country and its abundance of vineyards and wineries
Located in Northern California, Sonoma County is a bucolic and blissful area known for the picturesque Sonoma Valley wine region, plus other winemaking areas like the Alexander and Dry Creek valleys. The county is approximately 30 miles north of San Francisco and home to hundreds of prestigious wineries, lush vineyards, and some of the most stunning natural sights along the Pacific Coast.
Scattered throughout the county are charming small towns like the luxurious Healdsburg, Cloverdale, Santa Rosa, Windsor, and Petaluma. Besides winemaking, Sonoma County is also one of the most prominent regions for dairy farming, particularly in the Petaluma Gap. Sonoma County is home to almost 65 registered dairies. The area is also notable for poultry farming, fishing, crabbing, and lumber harvested from the redwoods.

What to Love

  • Heart of the farm-to-table movement with chefs united to promote healthier living and wellness
  • Over 60,000 acres of vineyards and hundreds of wineries coupled with countless award-winning restaurants
  • Hot air balloon rides over the county to see the area's incredible range of natural beauty

People & Lifestyle

Sonoma County is consistently ranked as one of the top places in the country to live and work. The area has a very tranquil atmosphere. It's scenic and relaxed, the way of life is slower-paced than the busier metropolitan areas. That said, it's only within an hour's drive of San Francisco, so the big city environment isn't far.
You can enjoy the world-class amenities and culture of San Francisco without trading in the rustic and pastoral charm of life in Sonoma. There are many authentic small towns in the area, and you're never far away from an acclaimed restaurant or winery. It's easy to feel like every day is a vacation in this paradisal county.

Dining, Shopping, & Entertainment

Centered in the scenic Sonoma Plaza, Girl and the Fig is an elegant French restaurant serving inventive country fare and fine wines. This rustic bistro also has an inviting outdoor patio for dining. Order beef tartare served on has browns, chicken fat-butter rice with Dungeness crab, or thick, steakhouse-style onion rings at FolkTable, a breezy and upscale restaurant located on Cornerstone Sonoma. This Michele Guide-recommended eatery prides itself on its inventive cuisine.
Layla at MacArthur Place is a Mediterranean restaurant in the heart of Sonoma. This three-meal restaurant serves fresh, seasonal dishes inspired by the Mediterranean region. Chef Michael Mena's first venture into wine country, Wit & Wisdom, is known for stylized dining with Mena's highly curated culinary flair.
Since Sonoma County is part of California's wine country, there are dozens of acclaimed wineries and vineyards to explore. Ram's Gate Winery includes a veranda and provides world-class tastings and wine-and-food pairings in a range of settings. Ledson Winery & Vineyards stands out as a decadent and refined modern family winery with a castle-style building that includes tasting sessions and a gourmet deli.
The small, family-owned Patz & Hall has retained its reputation for grandeur in Sonoma for more than three decades. It is considered one of California's finest Chardonnay and Pinot Noir vineyards.

Things to Do

The birthplace of the California State Bear Flag and the sight of the northernmost Franciscan Mission, the Sonoma State Historic Park, features several historical attractions near Sonoma Plaza. Begin your hike along the Sonoma Overlook Trail just a few blocks north of Sonoma Plaza. This scenic trail offers three miles of beautiful views overlooking the Sonoma Valley.

The trail connects with the Montini Open Space Preserve, a gorgeous and expansive area covered with large rock outcroppings and oak woodlands. There's also the 85-acre Maxwell Farms Regional Park with a playground, dog-friendly trails, picnic areas, and tennis courts.

Sonoma County hosts numerous festivals and events year-round, including Sonoma International Film Festival, Apple Blossom Festival, Taste of Sonoma, Wine Road Barrel Tasting, Country Summer Music Festival, Sonoma Food Tour, Annual Battle of the Brews, Sonoma County Wine Auction, and Sonoma County Harvest Fair.


There are many acclaimed school districts in Sonoma County within the area's diverse communities and towns, most notably the schools in Santa Rosa, Healdsburg, and Petaluma.
For higher education, Sonoma County is home to Empire College, Golden Gate University, Sonoma State University, University of San Francisco (Santa Rosa campus), and Santa Rosa Junior College.

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