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FORESTVILLE, SEBASTOPOL AND THE RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY

The charming hamlet of Forestville is in the sweet spot. The ease and peacefulness of country living prevails, but it’s only a short drive to busier towns and cities nearby. Tucked along Front St. is a bakery with a wood-fired oven where fragrant goodies are produced. Local cafes coax you in for a cup of coffee. Other dining options include burgers, pizza, deli delights, Italian, Mexican, and more. You’ll even find a few tasting rooms where you can sample local vintages. After driving through town, the road soon enters a redwood forest and the enchanting Russian River recreation area. Forestville’s apt motto is “Where the river meets the redwoods.”

Follow the Gravenstein Highway (State Rt 116) south from Forestville for a few miles and you’ll find the thriving community of Sebastopol. Offering a good range of services, shopping and amenities, Sebastopol is a creative center for west Sonoma County. Apples were once the primary economic driver here, but many of the orchards have since been replaced with wine grapes. Sebastopol’s engaging qualities and unique geographical setting have attracted a variety of shops, notable dining options as well as commercial and industrial enterprises.

The Russian River Valley is one of the most naturally beautiful, relaxing regions in California. Recreational opportunities are widely varied and engaging for all ages and skills. Explore hiking, biking and equestrian trails, plus fishing, boating, swimming and camping in the county’s numerous state and regional parks. Since the climate is ideal for cultivating Pinot and Chardonnay grapes, among other varietals, you’ll find plenty of outstanding wineries and restaurants where you can unwind after the day’s excursions. The Russian River meets the sea at the spectacular Sonoma Coast, where, among other delights, you’ll find seasonal whale watching and breathtaking scenery.

Sonoma County, located in northern California, lies about 30 miles north of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge and is home to nearly 500,000 residents. The county is most commonly known as one of California’s most prestigious and historic Wine Countries, accommodating more than 400 wineries. There are currently 16 approved Sonoma County appellations including Alexander Valley, Bennett Valley, Carneros, Chalk Hill, Dry Creek Valley, Fort Ross, Green Valley, Knights Valley, Moon Mountain, Northern Sonoma, Pine Mountain, Rockpile, Russian River Valley, Sonoma Coast, Sonoma Mountain, and Sonoma Valley.

Sonoma County offers miles of rugged Pacific coastline, towering redwood forests, vineyards, rivers and lakes making outdoor activity a staple for locals and visitors. Sonoma County’s involvement in the slow food movement has been prominent to California’s sustainable living values, inspiring change in food policy, market forces and production practices. The movement envisions a world in which all people can eat food that is good for them, the people who grow it, and the planet. Farm-to-table restaurants have flourished in Sonoma County, offering northern California some of the world’s finest cuisine.

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