Need bachelorette tips for Sonoma? Recommendations for a chill day out here (be warned: you've probably got two days of activities packed in this itinerary!)
Under $100: Sonoma County, Calif.
By Monique Barrett of Trazee Travel
Wineries, nature trails, breweries and gorgeous coastal views abound in Sonoma County, Calif., just a short drive from San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge. Spend the day touring the rugged coast and enjoying cool Pacific Ocean breezes; stay inland to explore wine country via bike rides; or fit in a mix of both to discover the best of both worlds. Whatever you decide to pursue, Sonoma County and its 400 wineries, miles of coastline and beautiful redwood forests won’t leave you disappointed.
Featured on the Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins and Dives, Hank’s Creekside Restaurant has been dishing one of the best breakfasts in Santa Rosa for more than 20 years. Stop in for one-of-a-kind house specials like corned beef hash, eggs benedict and cinnamon-walnut French toast. The restaurant’s unpretentious fare starts from about $6.
After adequately fueling up for the day, head to explore nature and gawk at towering redwoods at Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Reserve, boasting acres upon acres of stately and magnificent Sequoia sempervirens, commonly known as the coast redwood. Spend an hour or two basking in the forest’s serene environment and getting to know its unique features, including the 310-foot Parson Jones Tree and the 1,400-year-old Colonel Armstrong Tree. Park at the Armstrong Redwoods’ Visitor Center and main parking lot located right outside the entrance gate to avoid the $10 entrance fee.
Though relaxing, hiking is hard work, and lunch is calling on the coast. Venture to Bodega Bay for world-famous clam chowder and crab rolls at Spud Point Crab Company. This unassuming café is known for its deliciously fresh clam chowder and views of beautiful Bodega Bay as well as its hot dogs, chili dogs and tri-tip sandwiches that keep visitors and fishermen coming back for more. A bowl of homemade chowder starts from $6.75.
Head back inland to Healdsburg’s Wine Country Bikes to start your Wine Country bike ride. Rent a casual hybrid bike, conveniently equipped with an insulated rear trunk carrier, handle bar bag and lock, for $39 per day. The friendly folks at Wine Country Bikes provide visitors with a map of the area’s wineries and suggestions on the perfect route for your ride.
No trip to Sonoma County is complete without a visit to Russian River Brewing Co., featuring award-winning beers and delicious bites in a casual atmosphere. Brew enthusiasts can sample the entire draft list if they’re feeling ambitious (and have a ride home). Yummy pizzas with fresh ingredients and beer bites start from about $10.25.