The rugged stretch of land that runs along Sonoma County's coast inspires grand passions. From the pocket coves of Bodega Bay and windswept bluffs of Sea Ranch to inland pine-covered peaks and ocean-carved sea stacks, the area is marked by layers of fog, gulls, sweetgrass, and wildness.
It's a place where you can tidepool for hours in precious solitude or ride thrilling, frigid waves; a place where delicious wine and cheese are made carefully, lovingly, by hand.
The 45-mile stretch of coastline running from Bodega Bay in Sonoma County to Gualala in Mendocino County is best reached from Petaluma via Petaluma Valley Ford Rd., or from Santa Rosa via State 12 and State 116. For area information, contact the Sonoma Coast Visitors Center (850 State 1, Bodega Bay; 707/875-3866).