Fall is one of the most romantic times to come visit Sonoma Valley. The vines transform from green to a kaleidoscope of reds, oranges, and yellows, the scent of fermenting wine fills the air, and harvest parties pepper the valley with cheer. With warm days and cool evenings, we celebrate the turning of the seasons, ushering in “sweater weather,” fire pits, and pumpkin patches. The fall holiday line-up of Halloween, Dia de los Muertos, and Thanksgiving also allow us to celebrate the abundance of the harvest in style with a calendar chock-full of events, delicious food, and memorable wines.
If you’re coming to Sonoma Valley this fall, use this to help you brainstorm all the possibilities without missing a beat.
TOAST TO THE HARVEST
When it comes to fall, harvest is the reason for the season! Starting with the Annual Valley of the Moon Vintage Festival, harvest celebrations include winery celebrations, crush parties, and wine dinners galore! If wine isn’t your thing, the cannabis and olive harvests offer their own activities to enjoy, from tastebud titillating tastings to tantalizing tours. And don’t forget about a visit to our local farms and pumpkin patches—they are great for families, shopping for local preserves and produce, and taking in the seasonal vibes.
Nature buffs relish the fall—not only for the cooler temperatures, but most importantly for the colorful vistas. If you love to hike, get to know one of Sonoma Valley’s many state and regional parks to choose a route that best suits your ability. If you are more of a walker than a hiker, don’t miss Sonoma Botanical Garden, where a rare collection of Asian plants offers education, beauty and forest bathing. For those who love country drives and photo opportunities, be sure to wind your way up Highway 12, opt for a bike ride through the Carneros vineyards, or hop on an e-trike to cruise historic Sonoma—all ways promise fall foliage in technicolor!
CELEBRATE THE FALL HOLIDAYS
If you love a good party and get FOMO easily, be sure to consult our calendar of events. Fall is one of the busiest seasons in the valley—not only for harvest but for the holidays that punctuate these three months. Be on the lookout for festivities related to Oktoberfest, Halloween, Dia de los Muertos, and of course, Thanksgiving. If you love celebrating the December holidays a little early, then be sure to come visit for the Lighting of the Plaza Celebration, an annual event the weekend before Thanksgiving that’s sure to bring on the holiday cheer with thousands of lights, live performances, food trucks, wine for purchase, and free cider, hot chocolate and cookies. While many events are open to the public, plan ahead and check if reservations are required.
START YOUR HOLIDAY SHOPPING EARLY
Sonoma Valley may have international acclaim, but in it its heart, it’s all about small-town spirit. That’s why we love supporting our local shops and boutiques. Not only does it take the box store commercialism out of our holiday season, but it infuses us with a sense of magic and local pride. Our local shopkeepers offer highly curated selections, including clothing, jewelry, home goods, specialty food and kitchen items, artwork, books, souvenirs, and nostalgia, making it easy to share bespoke gifts with loved ones back home. Check out our website for inspiration or simply browse the Sonoma Plaza and its neighboring streets. Need sustenance to keep you going? Stop along the way at our local bakeries, coffee shops, tasting rooms, and restaurants.
TREAT YOURSELF TO SOME SELF-CARE
While our seasonal calendar of events could keep you busy morning, noon and night, the fall is a time when we naturally slow down. After a busy summer, it’s a chance to take it easy without an agenda, relax and unwind in a tranquil hotel or inn, and make time for self-care. Those who love getting quiet will love our host of wellness offerings, including spas, yoga classes (sometimes held at wineries for your added pleasure), and art classes at Sonoma Community Center and Art Escape to help you reset from the daily grind. If you want a real getaway of pure relaxation, check out Euphoria Retreats.
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Fall is a fiesta of abundance in Sonoma Valley! From harvest and holiday parties, to outdoor fun, shopportunities and wellness experiences, there's something to satisfy ever definition of fall fun. Click here to get help planning your visit.