Take in the iconic Golden Gate Bridge from all its best angles, from walking the bridge to soaking up the view from Sausalito.. Roll up your sleeves and shuck your own oysters – not only tasting the best shellfish in a beautiful picnic setting, but also supporting sustainable farming and a fellow B-Corp and climate action champion.. Experience the majesty of nature as you walk among giant redwood trees and hike the rugged coastline in Point Reyes National Seashore, with a local leader to show you all the best trails.. Taste the history of Californian wine with a sampling session at the oldest winery in the state, and enjoy time to try some of the other fifty vineyards around Sonoma.
Make your way from San Francisco to Sonoma wine country and to the rugged Pacific Ocean coast. Along the way you’ll find wine tastings, amazing cuisine, hikes through diverse landscapes – from coastal estuaries to epic redwood forests – and a wealth of history to experience. If you’re looking to combine wines, coastlines and relaxing times with the best of Northern California, then this is the Intrepid adventure for you.
Breakfast Included: 5 Lunches Included: 1 Dinner Included: 1
This northern California adventure starts in San Francisco, the ‘City by the Bay’, that has a beautiful setting and a vibrant, multicultural heart. If you have time today you might like to check out the vintage stores along funky Haight Street, catch the tram down to the waterfront or take an Adventure Cat Bay Cruise. At 6 pm this evening there’ll be a group meeting where you’ll meet your leader and get an overview of the next couple of days. Wrap up the day with a welcome dinner – the perfect chance to get to know your group better.
After breakfast this morning make your way to one of America’s most iconic sights – the Golden Gate Bridge. You’ll the time to take in the bridge from up-close – and the views it offers on all sides of the city, the bay, the Pacific Ocean and the Marin Headlands – as you walk across it towards Sausalito. Whether the day is clear or the city’s regular fog has rolled in, it’s a memorable sight. Grab a coffee in picturesque Sausalito – once a fishing community, now home to exclusive restaurants and expensive houses – and take in the views back over the city and the bridge. Continue north for the one-hour journey to the heart of the renowned winemaking region of the Sonoma Valley – a half-moon shaped stretched of land between mountain ranges covered in age-old oaks – and the historic town of Sonoma. After checking in to tonight’s accommodation, take a walk around town before your first taste of the local wine, starting at the oldest winery in California. Colonel Agostin Haraszthy planted grapes here in the 1850s and Buena Vista Winery still operates today – you’ll get to taste the history of Californian wine. End the day by choosing from the range of top-quality restaurants that line Sonoma’s tree-lined central town plaza – your leader will have the best suggestions.
Today is a free day to further explore Sonoma, and there a host of ways to do it. Got a taste for the local wine yesterday? There are almost fifty wineries scattered throughout the valley, some within walking distance of the plaza – but you might even rent a bike for a more leisurely way to get between tastings. If you’re feeling active speak to your leader about an optional hike to Gunsight Rock. The trail’s a bit challenging – almost 8 miles and some steep elevation gain – but the views of the valley and to San Francisco Bay one way and Santa Rosa the other are worth the effort. Otherwise soak up the relaxed atmosphere of Sonoma with its cafes, historic buildings, art galleries and stores filled with rare books. This evening choose to join your group again for dinner. There’s real variety and quality here, from the flavours of South Asia to the taste of Italy, seasonal Portuguese and bistro classics.
Leave Sonoma behind and make for the coast today, stopping for a morning coffee or drink in Guerneville along the way. The main town of the Russian River Valley, Guerneville is a time warp in looks and you can take in the eclectic mix of shops, galleries, and eateries that line the main street. After a stretch of the legs, make your way to Goat Rock and the Sonoma Coast State Park, then buy yourself some lunch at a spot on the cliffs of Highway 1 in Jenner that offers expansive views of the Russian River from the patio. From here you can talk a walk along a nearby beach to spot resting sea lions (if the season’s right) and admire the rugged coastline line, crashing waves, and precarious point lighthouse. Keep an eye out for migrating grey whales. There are quite a few beach walks and coastal trails, so the weather and the group’s appetite for activity will help decide which one to take. End the day by rolling up your sleeves and have a go at shucking your own oysters! Not only will you be tasting the best oysters in a beautiful picnic setting, you’ll also be supporting a fellow B-Corp and climate action champion. Settle into tonight’s Cape Cod-style accommodation in Tomales Bay, the only property located on the bay inside the Point Reyes National Seashore Park.
Spend this morning hiking in park, the only national seashore on the West Coast. You leader, the weather and the group will decide which of the endless trails you’ll take today. The trails can have you walking through thick redwood forest one minute, see deer grazing on open grassland the next, and finish up watching the ocean crash over the rocks. The park is filled with over 1,500 different types of plants and animals, and the great thing about having a local leader who knows the area so well is that you can just focus on enjoying the journey. Afterwards, head to the quaint town of Point Reyes Station and spend a relaxing afternoon looking into the shops down main street, maybe tasting some of the locally produced artisanal and organic foods (try the local creamery).
It’s time to head back to San Francisco, but not before one last chance to soak up some more of the area’s incredible scenery. Make your way to Muir woods National Monument and be dwarfed by the old-growth coast redwoods, the tallest living things in the world. Take a loop hike through a cathedral of giant trees before heading for your final meal with the group – lunch at the historic Pelican Inn, a slice of 16th century England here in California. Make your way back to the city, where this adventure comes to an end around 4 pm.