"A wine country classic...the smell of crushed
grapes in the fall is pure wine country"
Travel & Leisure
G uests of MacArthur Place can inquire with a member of our Guest Service Staff about the activities listed below, or while visiting the Sonoma Plaza, stop by the Sonoma Valley Visitors Center for more information.
To see a current list of events happening in the Sonoma and Napa Valleys during your visit, Click Here
Most of the wineries in the region have tasting rooms open between the hours of 10:00 am and 4:00 pm (some open until 5:00 pm) and several have tours of their facilities available. As you enter Sonoma Valley on Hwy 121 (or as you are leaving), be sure to stop at Gloria Ferrer for a glass of sparkling wine on the terrace with its spectacular view, or at nearby Viansa or Jacuzzi Family Vineyards.
Located just a few blocks off of the Sonoma Plaza, Sebastiani Winery has been making wine here in Sonoma since 1904 and has an impressive collection of historic, hand-carved redwood barrels. Visitors can learn about the history of the winery and the town on one of Sebastiani's complimentary daily tours. Buena Vista Winery, the oldest premium winery in the state, is just a short drive and is a great location to enjoy wine tasting and an afternoon picnic. There are also more than 18 local tasting rooms right on the Sonoma Plaza. Click here for a Sonoma Wine Walk map.
On the way back to the Inn, stop by Ravenswood or Gundlach Bundschu for some of their award-winning wines. If you're looking for green and organic options, you might consider Benziger Winery.They are well known for their strides in biodynamic and organic farm practices and have a strong commitment to sustainability throughout their operation. Benziger also owns Imagery Winery that also has biodynamic vineyards and a biodynamic garden. Kunde Winery uses sustainable farm practices and have eco-tours to engage and educate the public. Bartholomew Park Winery is a beautiful site and certified organic. Coturri Winery is certified organic and Phil Coturri is very knowledgeable about organic viticulture. Hanzell Winery is a member of the California Sustainable Wine Growing Alliance and they follow the guidelines for sustainable wine-growing (www.sustainablewinegrowing.org) and they take a holistic approach to being more sustainable. Cline Cellars is also a member of the California Sustainable Wine Growing Alliance. and some of the others above are also part of this group.
California Wine Tours could provide your transportation. They are really focusing on their sustainability program and have a "Green Fleet" of smaller transportation vehicles and are the first Bay Area transportation company to be included in the Bay Area Green Business Program.
Thirty other wonderful wineries are located throughout Sonoma Valley which will offer tasting and the full range of information about wine making. Our staff will be happy to offer directions to a specific winery or a list with directions to wineries throughout the valley. For a complete winery list visit www.sonomavalley.com
Another good source of winery information is the California Directory of Fine Wineries.
California Historic Sites
The Historic Sonoma Plaza, the largest town square of its kind in California, is just a short four-block walk from MacArthur Place. Approaching the Plaza, notice Sonoma's City Hall which stands proud in the middle of the eight-acre park. Taking a stroll around the Plaza is like stepping into California history; passing the Mission San Francisco de Solano, the last and northernmost of the California Missions, the Mexican Barracks, and the Depot Museum. Several other historic structures on the Plaza now house fantastic restaurants, boutiques, bookstores, and wine shops. Many visitors spend most of their stay in Sonoma just walking the Plaza!
Other must-see historic locations in the area include General Vallejos Home which is located on Spain Street just a few blocks west from the Plaza. A former Mexican commandante, Vallejo called his home Lachryma Montis, in Latin meaning "Tears of the mountain," after a local Indian legend. The house is a classic two story, "Yankee Style Gothic" and is open 10:00 am 5:00 pm.
A short drive to Glen-Ellen offers a visit to Jack London State Park. A historical tour of the site of the famed authors Wolf House (which burned before he and his wife were able to move in) is available at a minimal charge. Take along a picnic and enjoy the beautiful setting of this historic park.
For a unique and entertaining way to learn about Sonoma's history, food and wine, try George Webber's Sonoma Plaza History/Food/Wine Experience. It's much more than a walking tour! 707-694-5097
Hiking & Biking
For an outdoor adventure, Sonoma offers great trails for hiking, biking, or even just plain strolling. We can point you in the direction of a great walk or hike, or rent one our mountain bikes to explore the valley's vineyards and historical sites.
The Sonoma Overlook Trail is just a few blocks north of the Plaza and features beautiful views of the town of Sonoma, or head to historic Bartholomew Park Winery for a picnic and then a hike on the hills that surround the winery.
Ramekins Sonoma Valley Culinary School
Unique cooking classes available for all cooking levels (including the beginner) housed in a stunning "rammed earth" style building. The Catalog of classes offers courses in several different styles from renowned Chefs. Check out their site at www.ramekins.com or call 707-933-0450 for class catalog and information. Other interesting culinary adventures include Sonoma's seasonal Farmers' Markets, the Olive Press, and Sonoma County Farm Trails
Not to mention.
Hot Air Ballooning: Balloons Above the Valley 800-464-6824; Napa Valley Balloons 800-253-2224; Above the West 800-627-2759
Horseback Riding: For riding in Jack London State Historic Park, Sugarloaf State Park and also a location in Napa Valley near Calistoga contact Triple Creek Horse Outfit 707-933-1600; For horseback riding in the Napa Valley contact Napa Valley Trail Rides 707-255-2900; Wine Country Trail Rides at Roche Winery is located near Sonoma Raceway in the Carneros region 707-935-7115, ext. 206..
Sonoma Raceway: (formerly Infineon) in Sonoma holds major racing events throughout the year, including the Toyota/Savemart 350, NASCAR Series. www.sonomaraceway.com. 800-870-7223.
Theatre: There are some outstanding performing arts options in Sonoma Valley. Transcendence Theatre Company presents Broadway under the Stars. This series of outstanding summer concerts features Broadway and Hollywood performers in the breathtaking open air ruins of Jack London State Park. Shows always sell out so reserve in advance! 877-424-1414. The Sonoma Theatre Alliance also does a wonderful series of plays at the newly renovated Andrew's Hall Theatre in Sonoma. Click Here for a schedule of performances.
Art: The sculpture throughout our gardens is just a sampling from an amazing collection at the Ma(i)sonry Napa Valley Gallery in Yountville 707-944-0889. For a truly unique art & wine experience, tour your favorite vineyard with acclaimed artist Ann Rea and she will return to capture the moment with a beautiful oil on canvas. To see her Sonoma Remembered brochure, click here; The di Rosa Preserve offers the world's largest collection of California Bay Area Contemporary Art - more than 2,000 pieces. Set on 217 beautiful and historic acres in the Carneros, the Preserve is available for guided tours by appointment 707-226-5991; Cornerstone Festival of Gardens is located on Arnold Drive just past Gloria Ferrer Winery on the way into Sonoma and showcases some of the world's foremost landscape designers in approximately 25 completely unique and thought inspiring outdoor display gardens 707-933-3010; The Sonoma Valley Museum of Art is located on Broadway between MacArthur Place and the Plaza and has changing exhibits 707-939-7862; La Haye Art Centeris located on the Sonoma Plaza and features a number of local artisits; If your visiting Napa, The Hess Collection Winery has an extensive collection of contemporary paintings and sculpture 877-707-HESS.
Wine Tours: California Wine Tours offers both public and private tours 707-939-7225; Burdick Vineyard Tours offers personalized tours of the Wine Country 888-368-8463 or 707-996-3200; Napa Valley Wine Country Tours offers tours of Napa, Sonoma, Dry Creek and Russian River Valleys 707-226-3333; Viviani Tours offer full and half day tours 707-265-1940 or 800-658-9997; Beau Wine Tours offers customized tours of Napa and Sonoma 800-387-2328; Napa Valley Wine Train has lunch, brunch and dinner excursions through the Napa Valley 253-2111 or 800-427-4124. Platypus Wine Tours offer fun, light hearted Napa and Sonoma Valley Tours(707) 253-2723. For a fun and unique wine tour experience, try the Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley 877-Wine-Trolley. If you are interested in having someone drive your own car while tasting, Destination Drivers can assist you 707-293-8137.
Golf: There are a number of excellent golfing choices within a 30-minute drive: Stonetree Golf Club -18-holes in a beautiful setting in Novato 415-209-6090; Oakmont Golf Club- 2 Ted Robinson designed 18-hole courses in Oakmont 707-538-5524; Chardonnay Club - 27 holes of championship golf in the Napa Valley 707-257-1900; Eagle Vines is a new course in Napa that offers reduced rates for our guests 707-257-4470, ext. 1.
Children's Activities: Sonoma Plaza is 4 blocks from the Hotel and has a large children's playground. Sonoma Train Town is on Broadway a few blocks from the Hotel and has rides and the most developed scale railroad in the Americas 707-938-3912; The Charles M. Schulz Museum is about a 30 minute drive into Santa Rosa and is the official Museum of the "Peanuts" founder 707-579-4452; The Jelly Belly Visitor Center in Fairfield is about a 30 minute drive and offers factory tours 707-522-3267.
Farmers Markets: Sonoma's Farmers Markets are a great way to experience Sonoma's bounty of locally grown foods and meet and mingle with our local residents. Sonoma's Tuesday night Farmers Market is on Sonoma Plaza from 5:30 pm to dusk. It begins the 1st Tuesday in May and runs through the last Tuesday in October and is very popular. Picnicking and wine drinking on Sonoma Plaza are permitted. Our year-round Farmers Market is on Fridays at 241 W. 1st Street at Arnold Field and runs from 9 am - 12:30 pm. Both markets have food vendors as well offering a variety of dining options.
Or, kick-back and enjoy a quiet, peaceful day around the pool or at the spa at MacArthur Place! For spa treatment reservations call us at 707-933-3193.