The Top Things To See and Do in Sonoma, California
Sonoma is wine country, but there's plenty more to see and do here | © Rachid Dahnoun / Alamy Stock Photo
Sonoma is one of the top wine-making regions in the world, but there’s so much more to this part of California than the art of wine. History, culture, thrills and delicious treats await within Sonoma Valley.
Race down Sonoma Raceway
Sonoma Raceway is a year-round motor sports complex, 2.5mi (4km) road course and drag strip offering a comprehensive schedule of events, races and more. On Wednesdays, you can even race your own ride down the drag.
Visit Tuscany at the Viansa Winery and Tasting Room
Visit this Italian-style winery to taste wonderful wine and culinary deliciousness. If you’re hungry, try the pizzas cooked on a wood-fire oven or pop into the deli for a charcuterie board. You’re here for the drinks, though, so embark on a wine-tasting tour or book a private wooden hut for a more intimate sampling.
Get spooked on the Sonoma Plaza Ghost Walking Tour
© Tasfoto / Alamy Stock Photo
Not only does Sonoma possess a rich history, but there are also quite a few ghost stories to be told here. Try a Ghost Tour, beginning at Sonoma Plaza in the evening. You’ll spend two hours walking, guided by two paranormal investigators, learning about and uncovering known haunted spots and the darker history of Sonoma.
Ride the Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley
The Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley is a six-hour ride through four boutique wineries. Kick back in an open-air cable car while enjoying private tastings, not to mention a beautifully catered lunch accompanied by scenic wine country views, all with a winery representative as your guide.
Take in history at Mission San Francisco Solano
Mission San Francisco Solano was one of 21 missions founded by Friar Junipero Serra and is now a museum and part of a state park. The property consists of naturally growing cacti, a lovely fountain and horse stables. Admission to the museum also allows entry to the Sonoma Barracks across the street and the Vallejo House a few blocks away.
Enjoy sampling at the Olive Press
The Olive Press, the first olive mill in Sonoma, has created some of the most highly awarded olive oil in the US. Taste the fresh and tongue-dazzling oil at a tasting
, and see how the oil is made. Belly stuffed? Pop over to the property’s winery to wash it all down.
Feel like a kid at Sonoma TrainTown
Although TrainTown is mostly geared towards children, adults will also enjoy themselves at this playful stop. The fun begins with a delightful train trip through tunnels and bridges to reach the miniature town of Lakeview, which features a petting zoo, roller coaster and merry-go-round.
Drive out to Sonoma Coast State Beach
© Richard Wong / Alamy Stock Photo
The drive out to Sonoma Coast State Beach is well worth it. This is a great place for hiking, fishing and other nature-centric activities. Pack a lunch, pile friends in the car and get ready for a beautiful drive and day at the beach.
Get a rush at Sonoma Canopy Tours
Adrenaline junkies flock to Sonoma Canopy Tours to hook up to one of seven ziplines and sky bridges. Ziplines can reach up to 40mph (64kph) and you can choose to soar and climb across different courses. All this takes place among humbling California redwoods
, which you can also learn about during your visit.
Take a Segway Winery Tour
Ever wondered what it’s like to ride a Segway around town? Take a Segway Winery Tour to find out. After a lesson downtown, join an experienced guide and whizz through Sonoma between tasting rooms on beautiful estates, a cheese factory and a beautiful picnic-style lunch while taking in the countryside views along the way.
These recommendations were updated on September 3, 2021 to keep your travel plans fresh.