The inn at sunset in front of a colorful sky
Olea Hotel

24 Hours in Glen Ellen

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If you only have 24 hours to visit Sonoma County, an excellent place to spend your time is Glen Ellen, a cozy village tucked away between vineyards and valleys in the Sonoma Valley.

This sweet little town is home to some of wine country's most intriguing destination locations. From the rich history of Jack London State Historic Park, to the relaxed luxury of the Olea Hotel, you are sure to experience some of the magic of Sonoma County.

10 a.m. Hike at Jack London State Historic Park 

The old stone ruins are surrounded by vineyards
Jack London State Historic Park

Start off your day in Glen Ellen with a hike at one of the most fascinating sites in Sonoma County. Jack London State HistoricPark is a historical treasure trove and natural wonder with more than 39 acres to explore. Stroll through Beauty Cottage where Jack and Charmian London lived for many years. Vintage fashion enthusiasts can admire Charmian's closet, filled with evening wear from the 1920s and '30s. You can then explore the ruins of Wolf Mansion or partake in a docent led hike to learn about the history of this magical property.

1 p.m. Lunch

Continue your day at Jack London with a picnic lunch by the lake (Glen Ellen Village Market is a great place to pick up supplies), or for a more international hit, check out the highly rated Yeti restaurant for Nepalese and Indian food.

3 p.m. Check in at Olea Hotel 

The interior of a stylish rom at the hotel
Olea Hotel

This boutique, family-owned hotel has a cult following for their excellent service and gourmet breakfasts. Centrally located about three minutes from the heart of Glen Ellen, Olea is a perfect spot for couples looking for a romantic getaway.

Olea's careful attention to detail is shown in amenities like complementary local wines, on-site massage, luxury linens, and a hot tub tucked away in a quiet garden. Set into an oak studded hillside and surrounded by olive trees, the look of the property is classic Glen Ellen country charm with a clean lined modern aesthetic in the rooms.

4:30 p.m. Massage at Olea

Conveniently located off the lobby area, the Asian themed massage room provides a relaxing atmosphere for visitors. Olea's massages utilize a house blend of essential oils, to aid in reducing stress and clearing the mind. Couples massage and a variety of massage styles are available on request.

6:30 p.m. Dinner at Glen Ellen Star 

Diners enjoying dinner at dusk both inside and outside the rustic-chic restaurant Glen Ellen Star
Glen Ellen Star

Helmed by a husband-and-wife team (he's a one-time Food & Wine People's Best New Chef, she's part of the Benziger wine family), this rustic yet refined local favorite specializes in wood-fired cooking. The extensive wine list is chock full of area producers (and far beyond), and seasonal menus might include a tomato cream pizza with espalette pepper; brick chicken and buttermilk grits with camembert, sorrel, and strawberry harissa; and house-baked sourdough boule with jalapeno and cheddar. 

8:30 p.m. Wine at Olea's fire pit, then a dip in the hot tub

Lights strung over a seating area at dusk
Olea Hotel

What better way to wind down after a delicious dinner than with a glass of complementary wine by the Olea fire pit surrounded by fairy lights and olive trees? A dip in their secluded hot tub under the oaks will bring the night to a close and provide a perfectly relaxing way to end a wonderful day in Glen Ellen.

9 a.m. Breakfast at Olea 

 The continental breakfast at Olea, which is included in the price of your stay, is a one of a kind gourmet experience: a three-course breakfast that is delicious from start to finish. Enjoy house made Granola with a freshly made pastry, followed by a fruit smoothie shooter with seasonal fruit and then, not just one, but two entrées: sweet and savory. There's a poached farm egg on a cheesy grits fritter with wilted mustard greens, creole butter emulsion and bacon. Then there are whole wheat strawberry pancakes with lemon mascarpone and basil seed syrup. If you like breakfast, Olea's version is not to be missed!
Written by Sonoma Insider Heather Vuchinich