Spring in Sonoma Valley is the harbinger of all fun things to enjoy throughout the spring, summer and fall months. The valley is verdant after the winter rains, and resplendent with flowers, tree blossoms and bird song. But beyond spring’s exquisite beauty, it also heralds a time of celebration, when visitors and locals gather for the Tuesday Night Farmer’s Market, music festivals throughout the valley, al fresco wining in and dining, and all sorts of outdoor adventures. Here are our favorite ways to enjoy spring during your visit.


The best places to see wildflowers in Sonoma Valley are almost too many to name. However, some of the best blooms we’ve seen can be found at Sonoma Botanical Garden—an idyllic place to picnic and stroll. Plant lovers will find the Botanical Garden’s collection of native and Asian plants extraordinary, particularly in springtime. Jack London Historic State Park also has an incredible display of blooms. Stroll the grounds and picnic alongside the late author’s historic cottage or hike through the redwood forest to the summit for impressive views of the valley below. Speaking of vistas, be sure to include Sugarloaf Ridge State Park in your wildflower safari, too. As the highest point in the valley, Sugarloaf’s vistas may have you dancing in the meadows to the sound of music!

While we have a few favorites, all of Sonoma Valley’s state and regional parks are perfect for seeing spring in action. Be sure to consult our Field Guide of Sonoma Valley to learn more about the local flora and fauna.


Food lovers will revel in the abundance of fresh produce here in Sonoma Valley. Our Friday Morning Farmer’s Market is haven for the culinary-minded, with fresh fruits, vegetables and flowers, and several booths dedicated to artisan foods and crafts. While our Friday Morning Farmer’s Market runs all year long, May is the beginning of the Tuesday Night Farmer’s Market, a beloved Sonoma mid-week tradition, that means live music, picnicking, food trucks, local wines and beers, and local produce from the valley's farmers. It's a party you'll definitely want to join while you're here. Both markets offer the best of Sonoma, in ambiance and in offerings.

If you want to get closer to the production itself, we highly recommend visits to a few Sonoma Valley gems, notably Oak Hill Farm, Flatbed Farm, Serres Ranch, and Cassidy Ranch. Check their websites for visiting hours and offerings. If you want to learn about the vegan diet and lifestyle, there’s no better inspiration than Charlie’s Acres, an animal sanctuary and education center.


Once the Sonoma sun starts heating up the valley, there’s nothing finer than eating and drinking outdoors. Imagine slow, sunny days, delicious sips and bites, and no agenda except for tasting the good life. Spring is the beginning of picnic season, and picnicking options abound, from the historic Sonoma Plaza—one of the rare town squares in the United States where open alcohol containers are permitted—as well as our state and regional parks. However, many wineries also allow picnicking; just be sure to call or check their websites first; it’s considered bad manners to bring food to places where it is otherwise sold. You can buy delicious and well-made pre-prepared foods at Sonoma Market, Glen Ellen Village Market, and Whole Foods Market, among other great spots. Many restaurants also have solid to-go programs, developed during the pandemic, that now make for special wine country picnics.

While picnicking is a joy, there’s nothing better than having food and wine prepared for you, at a table, without having to lift a finger. Sonoma Valley’s outdoor dining scene is as varied as it is imaginative. You can find some of our favorite outdoor patios at the Swiss Hotel, The Red Grape, the El Dorado Hotel, the HopMonk Tavern, Valley Bar & Bottle, the girl & the fig, Spread Kitchen, Palooza Brewery & Gastro Pub, and Salt & Stone…but that’s just for starters. There are countless outdoor venues to choose from—including wineries, many of whom are happy to organize food and wine pairings with their in-house chefs. Just be sure to call ahead to make proper reservations.


Sonoma Valley is chock-full of creative ways to explore. While having a car seems like a smart travel choice, it also can be burden if you have wine, beer or cider tasting in your plans…not to mention, it also contributes to your carbon footprint. Sonoma County is all about sustainability, so why not join in on the fun?

Enjoy a tour of historic downtown Sonoma by E-Trike with Pushpak Motors—perfect for those who are neither able or inclined walk. Toast to the sunrise with a glass of bubbly and an unforgettable flight over the vineyards in a hot air balloon with Sonoma Ballooning. Catch a private tour in a sidecar motorcycle with Rides by Me. Jump aboard the Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley for a day of wine tasting, without having to plan your day or worry about a designated driver. Share a luxury van, bus, town car or limousine with your friends with Pure Luxury Transportation, California Wine Tours and Platypus Wine Tours. Rent a bicycle at Sonoma Adventures or Wine Country Cyclery and cruise through the quiet vineyard roads at your own pace. Load up your friends in a van for a cannabis tour with Happy Travelers Tours. Or if you’re feeling particularly adventurous, get a bird’s-eye view of Northern California’s famous coastal redwoods with Sonoma Zipline Adventures, flying from one tree-top to the next!


Spring is also the perfect time to take care of your summer planning. With a summer full of music festivals, bespoke tasting experiences, idyllic outdoor dining, and charming hotels and inns to choose from, it’s never too early to start making reservations, buying tickets, and checking in with our calendar of events. If spring is all about fresh starts and new beginnings, now’s the time to set the tone and pace for the rest of your travel year. While spring is such a sweet time to experience Sonoma Valley in bloom, a visit to the valley is guaranteed to be memorable no matter when you come to visit.