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What are you "Must Do's"?

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New Orleans
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What are you "Must Do's"?

Hubby and I are planning a trip to SF, Sonoma, Napa in late August for our 30th Anniversary. First time to this area and can NOT wait!

I'm just beginning to try to make an itinerary....man, it's overwhelming...so many terrific options. I've read this board ad nauseam and it just makes me want to see/do/drink more.

We fly into SFO midday Saturday and will drive to Sonoma where we'll stay at Cottage Inn & Spa until Monday (then headed to Napa).

As I begin this process of intensive (bordering on OCD) research, please share with me your "Must Do's" in Sonoma as to vineyards, dining, etc.?

San Francisco...
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1. Re: What are you "Must Do's"?

There are NO must do's. Why don't you read the things to do section and see what you like and what your interests are -- people go to wine country to visit wineries, enjoy hikes, got to the coast, bike, relax, have spa treatments, do hot air balloon rides, eat at great restaurants,

What do you want to do ?

New Orleans
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2. Re: What are you "Must Do's"?

Thank you. I did read the things to do section. I was merely asking for opinions on what other visitors/experts feel are their own personal "must do's"...suggestions, if you will.

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3. Re: What are you "Must Do's"?

We were in Sonoma last week and loved girl and the fig and wine tasting at Gundlach Bundschu and Bartholomew Park. :)

Boston...
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4. Re: What are you "Must Do's"?

I am researching too, and have not visited yet . . . but on my "must" list are spending a lot of time along the beautiful coastline (e.g. Bodega Bay etc.) and also seeing redwood trees (I plan to stop in Armstrong Woods nature reserve to do so).

I'm intrigued by the history, too. Considering two things in or near Santa Rosa: the Charles Schultz Museum, and the Luther Burbank museum/site.

Visalia, CA
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5. Re: What are you "Must Do's"?

My wife & I did a wine pairing at St Francis winery a few weeks ago. The food was fantastic!

Raleigh, North...
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6. Re: What are you "Must Do's"?

It might help if you could express your general interests and what you intend to "get out of" your trip.....is your sole interest wine? Do you like to hike? Would you like to take tours of wineries or just hit tasting rooms.....knowing things like that would provide a base for giving suggestions.

I agree with Belomiser that there really are no "must do's " that can satisfy everyone because everyone has different tastes. Sonoma County has a lot to offer, maybe a good starting place would be the 101 Things to Do guide for Sonoma- that will give you an idea of what is available outside of winetasting and wine "stuff", and then maybe you could come back with queries about specific options.....

since an anniversary is involved, do you want to plan something special for that day?

New Orleans
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7. Re: What are you "Must Do's"?

Thanks for the input. I know there are no real "Must Do's", but most people have their own personal list. I know when people ask me what mine are for different areas, I can rattle off a few that mean something to me. They may not be "Must Do's" for the next guy, but that's okay.

Since our stay will be split between Sonoma/Napa/SF, we'll try to diversify a bit. Definitely want to see the coastline (Bodega Bay), redwoods (Armstrong Woods). Probably won't do much hiking. Obviously, we'd like to do some tastings, tours (maybe something out of the ordinary like Glen Ellen's tram/tractor tour). In either Sonoma or Napa, we'll probably need a break from wine and try to do maybe an olive oil or cheese tasting.

As to wine, at some point, between Sonoma and Napa I think we'd like to experience different types of tastings/tours....large, boutique, etc.

As I said, I'm just beginning my research, so thanks for the suggestions and help.

ohio
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8. Re: What are you "Must Do's"?

WhoDat….My husband and I stayed at the Cottage Inn a few years ago and loved it.

The Vella Cheese Co is a very short walk from your place and definitely worth a visit. I preferred it far more than the other cheese store on the square. If you like books, there a couple of small bookstores you can also walk to which are worth checking out. One specializes in rare and first edition books.

I agree with syrahgirl about Girl and The Fig. I'd also suggest the El Dorado Kitchen. Both are walkable from your Inn.

I'd classify your plans to visit Armstrong Woods and the Sonoma Coast as definite must dos. While you are near those places you'll have many wineries to choose from which will offer you very different experiences than what you'll find in Napa. Take a look at this site for maps of wineries in Sonoma Co. http://www.wineroad.com

MaxieLou…If you have an interest in gardening, you'll find Luther Burbank's history fascinating. In addition to his home and gardens in Santa Rosa there's his experimental garden near Sebastopol that's interesting if you happen to be nearby (not sure I'd go too far out of my way for that one). Santa Rosa itself was not my favorite town in Sonoma Co, but I have to say it was worth going to the Russian River Brewing Co. to try Pliny the Elder , rated the best beer in the country. If you like IPA's, you might agree.

Enjoy!!!

Edited: 13 March 2014, 17:00
New Orleans
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9. Re: What are you "Must Do's"?

happytrails, thank you! Your suggestions are exactly what I'm looking for....personal recommendations on what other people really enjoyed....and now you've got me thinking that I need to visit Russian River Brewing Co....hmmm.

San Francisco
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10. Re: What are you "Must Do's"?

I think it's very tough (and perhaps a bit selfish) to ask people to rattle off (spending time to do so) everything they think is important without ever providing any of your interests and priorities.

I once typed up a long and informative post about cycling across the Golden Gate Bridge only to be told that the OP didn't know how to ride a bike! That ended my offering up ideas without at least a modicum of effort by the OP.