There’s never an off-season for outdoor recreation in Northern California, especially in world-famous Wine Country, where the head-turning natural scenery melds magnificently with the rolling vineyards. Historic Sonoma, in particular, is a wondrous outlet for bicycling, birding, and, of course, hiking. Hiking in Sonoma has never been more alluring, even for casual travelers, as millions of Americans have reconnected with nature this year. Thankfully, the award-winning El Dorado Hotel & Kitchen is only a short jaunt from countless mountainous pathways, many of which provide a unique, panoramic glimpse of Sonoma County.
The Top 3 Hiking Trails in Sonoma
Sonoma (and all of Wine Country, for that matter) is known for its vineyards, culinary destinations, and opulent hotels. But none of it would be as gripping without the picturesque Mayacamas Mountains and the region’s semi-arid topography. So, for those who plan to spend an afternoon hiking in Sonoma’s rolling backcountry, the El Dorado team recommends these three distinct locales, starting with the always-enthralling “Grape Stomp.”
Bartholomew Park’s “Grape Stomp”
Sonoma’s Bartholomew Park features 375 acres of semi-dense forestry, lush gardens, and sweeping vineyards. Most locals know this foundation-maintained park for its “Grape Stomp,” a 2.4-mile loop that offers hilltop overlooks, thriving wildflowers, serene ponds, and, of course, several acres of grapevines, owned by the on-site Bartholomew Estate Vineyards and Winery. This biodiverse landscape is undeniably tranquil and uniquely located near one of Sonoma County’s most beloved courtyard patios. There’s nothing quite like succeeding a scenic stroll in the woods than relishing a flight of award-winning vino.
No visit to Sonoma County is complete without a semi-challenging stroll to Schocken Hill’s peak. The 400-foot climb up the hill eventually leads to far-reaching valley views, including Sonoma’s western rim. Hikers often spot black-tailed jackrabbits, California mule deer, and colorful birdlife. It’s hard to top a sunset walk to and from the Sonoma Overlook, especially amid spring’s bloom. Potential guests will also be happy to read that the Overlook’s trailhead is within walking distance of the El Dorado Hotel (0.4 miles, to be exact).
It’s nearly impossible to choose just one trail inside the 47.5-acre Jack London State Historic Park, as there are miles upon miles of possibilities. The park itself is home to historic buildings, a ranch, a lake, a museum, and even a small knoll where London’s ashes were laid to rest. It’s an absorbing experience worth revisiting time and time again. Backpackers often gravitate toward the eight-mile estate loop, featuring a vineyard, smoky mountains, mossy woodlands, and tall redwoods. Again, the park is worthy of multiple visits, especially if you admire London’s best works, such as The Call of the Wild, White Fang, and The Iron Heel.
El Dorado, an Opulent Sonoma Plaza Hotel
Start and finish each day of wine tasting, horseback riding, and hiking in Sonoma at El Dorado Hotel & Kitchen, a Travelers’ Choice award-winning haven. It’s one of the only lodging and dining options in the dazzling Sonoma Plaza. Each well-appointed guest room is steps from the solar-heated pool, a farm-driven restaurant, and a private fireplace lounge. El Dorado Kitchen, in particular, is an attraction in and of itself. Please keep in mind that restaurant availability and operations are subject to change due to COVID-19.