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Best Honeymoon Destinations: Sonoma Wine Country

The Russian River Valley is known for its river beaches, redwood forests, and romantic inns.

Sonoma County is California’s best honeymoon destination. That may seem like a grand proclamation, but we’re not just boasting. Here's why: Sonoma County is where you can find abundant sunshine, over 400 wineries, romantic vineyards, breathtaking Pacific Ocean beaches, award-winning restaurants, majestic redwood forests, relaxing resorts, and did we mention world-class wine? Last but not least, this favorite Wine Country is just 45 minutes away from San Francisco. Who needs more?

Simply take a look at these five points, and you’ll surely agree that Sonoma Wine Country region is prime not only for weddings, but for the happy couple’s getaway, too. 

1.  The Romance of Wine

There’s no denying the pleasure of a fine glass of wine, and shared with a loved one, a sip adds an extra special statement to even the most simple moment. Sonoma County boasts more than 400 wineries, and 60,000 acres planted with world-class winegrapes of nearly every varietal imaginable.

Start with Albarino (Paradise View from Sonoma Coast is a knock-out), end with Zinfandel (Mazzocco Sonoma winery of Healdsburg crafts nearly two dozen variations from nearly a dozen vineyards each year), and taste every letter of the alphabet in between.

Then, as you’re ready to fly home, Alaska Airlines invites you to check up to a case of wine for free when you depart from the Charles M. Schulz – Sonoma County (STS) Airport.

Would you like to play princess for a day? Visit Sonoma's wine castles, for example: Ledson (photo above), Chateau St. Jean, Ferrari-Carano, and Francis Ford Coppola wineries.

2. Lovely Places to Cuddle

Whether you’re looking for a posh, modern retreat (the recently renovated Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa, for example) a quaint, historic B&B amid the vineyards (the 1880 Raford Inn beckons), or flat out luxury (Madrona Manor is a classic European mansion), lodging here is so unique and welcoming you may never choose to leave your estate grounds.

Explore all hotel listings here. But first, be sure to explore our terrific, insider-only deals and specials.

Plus, many Sonoma County hotels and inns offer passes for complimentary wine tastings at dozens of nearby wineries. Find wineries here.

What would a romantic getaway be without sunsets, ocean breezes and breathtaking views? Find favorite romantic spots here.

3. The Embrace of Mother Nature

Running hand-in-hand through grassy meadows, strolling through whispering mountaintop forests, romping on the beach, and plucking flowers from vast gardens to wear in your hair. Does that sound like a greeting card?

It’s reality in Sonoma County, which spans more than 1 million gorgeous acres, from the Mayacamas Mountains range to the Pacific Ocean coast. With near-endless parks, preserves, babbling streams, greenbelts, and vast open agricultural and grazing areas, there’s something new to explore every day.

How much open space is there, really? In fact, rural lands take up almost two-thirds of Sonoma County’s total acreage, and the Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District continues to acquire more land for protection every single year, enjoying a remarkable 28 percent growth since 2006. Explore our listings of outdoor activities and nature parks.

4. Wine … and Dine

Given the wondrous agricultural bounty grown in Sonoma County, the pasture raised beef, lamb, pigs, and poultry, plus rainbow arrays of artisan cheeses, breads, and treats like handcrafted chocolates, it’s no wonder that we’re home to some of America’s best farm-to-table restaurants.

Just a few of our top-rated destinations include the 2016 Michelin star favorites Madrona Manor, Farmhouse Inn & Restaurant, and Terrapin Creek Café.

If you’re a true foodie, you might even think about a spring wedding, to take advantage of Restaurant Week in March. Get details about the best restaurants in Sonoma County.

5. Play Time

Because Sonoma County encompasses such a broad range of landscapes, the recreation is equally expansive.

You and your honey can horseback ride at wineries or along the coastal bluffs of Bodega Bay, zip line through the redwoods, hike and bike, kayak the Russian River, and go hot-air ballooning over vineyards, lakes, and valleys.

Perhaps you’d like to take a winery tour in a horse-drawn carriage, or explore the off-the-beaten-path vineyards on a Vespa, it’s all at your beck-and-call. Find sightseeing and tours here.

 

Planning a wedding?

Get complimentary assistance from Sonoma County Tourism's Wedding Coordinator. Just fill out the assistance request form and we'll get back to you with ideas for your dream wedding in wine country. You'll find more resources in our wedding section.

Written by Sonoma Insider Carey Sweet