Surprise-filled walks reveal three different sides of Marin County's most scenic town

Phil Frank is known for writing the “Farley” comic strip forthe San Francisco Chronicle. But he got his start exploring thegoings-on of Sausalito. Among his piles of sketches is a drawing inwhich a blockhead-looking character by the name of Arthur “Art”Colony announces his intention to run for city council. Hiscampaign slogan: “Where is Art Colony?”

Frank laughs when asked what inspired that. “I came up with ArtColony because everyone always asks, ‘Where is this art colony?’ asif there were a big tourist attraction here clearly marked with asign saying ‘art colony.’ The other question people always ask is,’Why are there elephants in the downtown park?'”

The artist community is spread throughout the town. And thesculpted elephants? Frank shrugs: “Why not?”

That blend of art and whimsy epitomizes both Frank and hishometown. Sausalito is a place that everyone thinks they know― they know its views, its tourist shops, its summer-weekendcrowds. But in his role on the board of the Sausalito HistoricalSociety, Frank spends time lecturing and “noodling around, findingstuff” to celebrate Sausalito’s hidden corners. “Locals tend tosurrender the town ― especially the crowded downtown ―to tourists,” Frank says. “It’s as if you have to get them torediscover Sausalito.”

If, like the locals, you need to be reminded what a specialplace Sausalito is, here are three walks that will do the job. Eachoffers unexpected pleasures ― a boatbuilding school, asidewalk cafe, a hidden bay view. Taken together they give you agood idea of what makes Sausalito so special.

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