Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa Local Attractions

Local Attractions

Sonoma Wine Country is one of California's best destinations.


The Wineries

The combination and diversity of wineries in Sonoma Valley is impressive. We have a few big boys as well as a number of small boutique Sonoma wineries. It really is impossible to go after them all even in a three day trip. However, there's nothing wrong with giving that a try.

Back Roads

Sonoma Valley is filed with amazing backroads that take you up steep hills, into the hinterland where cows and horses graze. Warm Springs Road, Bennett Valley Road, Cavedale Road, Dunbar Road, Henno Road, Nun's Canyon Road, Adobe Creek Road, Lawndale Road. As you drive these little two lane, tree-line beauts you come around corners to find ancient vineyards, old farm houses, redwood groves, open fields. It's invigorating. A day could be taken just driving slowing, off the beaten path.


Sonoma Valley is one of those areas where you can still see and even feel the history as you familiarize yourself with the region. We still have the Mission Sonoma. Remnants and memorials to the "uprising" that was called the Bear Flag Revolt and that led to California independence is still on view. The east side of Sonoma is filled with older homes, some 100 years old others built in the 20s and 30s and 40s that are stunning pieces of architecture. Stone walls seen throughout the valley look back on a day when property lines were not made up of wire fencing. Old wineries and ghost wineries still stand.

Sonoma Valley as Base Camp

If you want to plan a trip to "Wine Country" Sonoma Valley is perfect. If the Valley and nearby Carneros won't satisfy your wine tasting desires, Napa Valley is 20 minutes away, Russian River Valley is a half hour away, Dry Creek about 40 minutes away, Alexander Valley 40 minutes away and San Francisco is only 45 minutes away. The Valley is a perfect place to base yourself if you are looking for a Wine Country vacation.

Glen Ellen

Jack London made Glen Ellen his home and today his former ranch is a State Historical Park. There was a time when this tiny town boasted 8 different bars and saloons. Before that it was a resort spot where San Francsicans would come for the summer to enjoy the two creeks that come together here, to hike, to fish and to drink. Today, most people like to describe Glen Ellen as "quaint and funky". And it is. Downtown, such as it is, holds a funky bar, a great upscale market, a number of B&Bs, a auto repair shop, 4 restaurants, a bank, real estate offices and that's about it. It's off the main highway and a great place to spend an afternoon strolling before getting a bite to eat.

Sonoma Plaza

It's been the heart of the town for more than 100 years. Today, the plaza is a tree-filled oasis of soft grass, playgrounds, paths, duck ponds and shade that make it the perfect place to hang for a couple of hours with a bottle of wine and a picnic lunch. Surrounding the plaza on four sides are shops and restaurants. Sonoma was not always a tourist stop. Though much of the commerce that goes on there today is tourism related you can still find the old mens clothing shop, the banks, a grand old theatre and more that has served locals for years. But in addition, it's filled with eclectic shops, great restaurants and a numerous places to sit outside and watch people stroll by. The Sonoma Wine Exchange is a must stop. It has a great collection of local wines, many very hard to find gems.

Best Hikes in Sonoma

Take in Sonoma Valley’s diverse flora and fauna hiking in our famed State Parks. Trails for all skill levels and each area showcases different aspects of Sonoma’s unique terrain. Trek through the Mayacama Mountains on dirt trails that pass forested canyons and grassy meadows in Sugarloaf State Park. Experience a bit of history at Jack London State Park- after you visit the author’s writing cabin and farm, meander down one the many trails that lead you through meadows, oak woodlands and mixed forests. Or take the Sonoma Overlook Trail to enjoy breathtaking view of unparalleled  Sonoma Valley and the San Francisco Bay.

In addition to world-class golf, hiking and biking, we invite guests to explore the Sonoma Coast, Redwoods & Rivers or Valleys & Vineyards.