7 Day Trips to Take This Year from Sonoma Valley

Northern California’s Wine Country can be an all-encompassing term, with people thinking of the entire region north of the San Francisco Bay Area that is known for its hundreds of wineries and breathtaking natural beauty. However, there are two distinct valleys: Sonoma Valley and Napa Valley. Although they are right next to each other, each valley has its own personality and unique attractions.

Sonoma Valley is generally regarded as the birthplace of wine in California. The heart of Sonoma Valley stretches from the town of Sonoma on the south end up to Santa Rosa and is set between the Mayacamas Mountains and the Sonoma Mountains. It includes numerous small communities such as Glen Ellen, Kenwood, Lawndale, and others along Highway 12.

Sonoma Valley offers many attractions where owners of Sonoma luxury homes can take day trips. These options range from visiting vineyards and tasting rooms to hitting the beaches and seafood restaurants in Bodega Bay on the Pacific Ocean to taking advantage of the many activities available on Lake Sonoma.

The market for Sonoma homes for sale remains incredibly strong. According to Zillow.com, the median price of homes in Sonoma is $958,981, which is a jump of 12.5% during the last year. If you're interested in purchasing one of these properties to begin enjoying a wonderful lifestyle, hire a talented real estate agent who can find a property that matches your criteria. Once you’re settled into your new home, here are some day trips to take from Sonoma Valley:

Wine tours

Sonoma County is California’s largest wine-producing area, so a great way for owners of Sonoma real estate to acclimate themselves with the entire area is to visit different vineyards and tasting rooms. Sonoma Valley is not quite as touristy as Napa Valley, which means smaller crowds and less traffic to deal with. There are many wineries in the valley that offer tours of vineyards and production facilities followed by a relaxing visit to tasting rooms. There are many ways to plan a day of visiting wineries, and one of the best guides is The Sonoma County Digital Visitor Inspiration Guide.

Lake Sonoma

Lake Sonoma is a long, narrow reservoir west of Cloverdale that was created when Warm Springs Dam was built in 1983. Lake Sonoma Recreation Area is a sportsman’s paradise offering fishing, boating, camping, swimming, hiking, and hunting. There are many campsites accessible only by boat. Lake Sonoma Marina has a ramp for launching boats and is the place to rent boats, personal watercraft, kayaks, and standup paddleboards.

Lake Sonoma is surrounded by many vineyards and tasting rooms, which will nicely round out a day trip from the Sonoma Valley. Lake Sonoma is just off Highway 101 about a half-hour north of Santa Rosa and a little more than an hour from the town of Sonoma, making it an easy trip for outdoor enthusiasts who own Sonoma real estate.

Jack London State Historic Park

Jack London State Historic Park, also known locally as Jack London Home and Ranch, is dedicated to the beloved writer and features his grave, a museum, historic buildings that include his cottage on the Beauty Ranch, and hiking trails. There are many tours and activities available at the park, which is near Glen Ellen on the eastern slope of Sonoma Mountain.

Glen Ellen

Residents of Sonoma homes looking for a relaxing day off the beaten path often head to Glen Ellen, a peaceful small town of fewer than 800 residents along Highway 12. Besides wine tasting at one of the several wineries surrounding the town, Glen Ellen is a great place to enjoy a picnic in the neighboring Sonoma Valley Regional Park or dine in one of its low-key restaurants. Sonoma Valley Regional Park also offers a dog park and trails for biking, hiking, and horseback riding. There is a small, peaceful lake right in the middle of the park.


Sonoma Valley’s pleasant weather is welcomed by residents of Sonoma luxury homes who love to play golf. One of the major courses is Valley of the Moon Club, which is located on a picturesque layout with two courses off Highway 12 just outside Santa Rosa. The Valley of the Moon course is a 6,300-yard layout that was designed by Ted Robison to be both enjoyable and challenging. The Sugarloaf course is a smaller 4,000-yard, par 63 layout that is meant to provide a quick, fun round for golfers of all levels, particularly beginners. After a round, golfers can enjoy the Oak Dining Room’s full menu.

Bodega Bay

A popular day trip from Sonoma Valley is visiting Bodega Bay, a small village on the Pacific Ocean with breathtaking scenery of the coast. Bodega Bay is just a 40-minute drive from Santa Rosa, leaving plenty of time for residents of Sonoma real estate to hike, bike, or take horseback rides along the coastal trails, relax on the beach, go on a whale-watching trip, or go kayaking on the bay. At the end of the day, there are several wonderful seafood restaurants serving incredible fare. Film buffs will also want to visit sites in and around town where scenes from Alfred Hitchcock’s thriller The Birds were filmed.

Sonoma TrainTown Railroad

Sonoma TrainTown Railroad is a great place to have fun while getting a sense of the history of the area. TrainTown is in Sonoma, one mile south of the Plaza, and features a quarter-scale railroad that makes a four-mile trip lasting 20 minutes. The train goes over bridges, through tunnels, and stops in the miniature town of Lakeview, which has a petting zoo. There are also several railroad-themed amusement rides on the 10-acre site. Park admission and parking are free. Visitors can purchase tickets to the various attractions and the train ride costs $8.25 per person.

There are many other popular day trips from Sonoma Valley. If you’ve been thinking about buying Sonoma luxury homes, let the talented agents at Coldwell Banker Brokers of the Valley guide you through the transaction. Meet our dedicated Sonoma Valley agents.


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