The idea about backroads and byways of Sonoma was the result of observing my family and friends overwhelmed with the many choices to make when visiting. I would sketch maps for them and send them on their way to create their own Sonoma experience and memories.
Attempting to see the whole of Sonoma County is a bit daunting. Even touching briefly on the high spots is a challenge. So I came up with five one-day trip itineraries about backroads and byways that would give my visitors the opportunity to choose which area of the County they wanted to see, and then see the best that area had to offer.
I’ve lived in California almost my entire life and traveled it nearly entirely from east to west, north to south. Sonoma County has my vote for the most natural beauty, varied and fertile land, unfailingly excellent wine and agricultural produce, uniqueness of the local art, and the small-town friendliness of a town growing up into a city in the country.
I have spent countless pleasurable hours driving backroads and byways and relishing each new curve of the road. I’ve biked, hiked, and walked my dog, always drawn to the next unseen bend in the path or road. My friends tease me when I tell them about my latest discovery along country roads, calling me the “Sonoma Gypsy.” I am flattered to be associated with this amazing piece of the earth.
The natural terrain of the County includes sleepy coastal sand dunes, lush valleys blanketed with vineyards, ancient redwoods bordering the Russian River, orchards and farmlands, and mountain peaks jutting high enough to have vistas of the Golden Gate Bridge 50 miles to the southwest.
The Ambiance of California’s Early Days
The birth of the Republic of California took place in this area of California. There is much physical evidence remaining of that exciting and tumultuous era. Historical buildings and ranches endure to take us back in time.
Many events and festivals throughout the year celebrate the colorful chronology and natural abundance of Sonoma County.
Free Maps to See Sonoma Your Way
The self-guided day trips and free maps about backroads and byways are for your personal use. Please print them out and enjoy them. The Visitor Centers throughout the County are excellent sources of additional information and helpful when booking lodging.
On these pages you’ll also find many links to free resources that will help you plan your visit.
Enjoy Sonoma Backroads and Byways!