Sonoma Plaza

Top choice in Sonoma

This is the largest plaza in California, and the veritable center for politics, love and community in the Sonoma Valley. Smack in the center of the plaza, the Mission Revival–style city hall, built 1906–08, has identical facades on four sides, reportedly because plaza businesses all demanded City Hall face their direction. At the plaza’s northeast corner, the Bear Flag Monument marks Sonoma’s moment of revolutionary glory. The weekly farmers market (5:30pm to 8pm Tuesdays, April to October) showcases Sonoma’s incredible produce.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Sonoma attractions

1. Bear Flag Monument

0.05 MILES

This bronze sculpture, created in 1914, features a man standing on a rock and holding a flag to commemorate the Bear Flag Revolt. The revolt took place…

2. Toscano Hotel

0.08 MILES

Toscano Hotel opened as a store and library in the 1850s, then became a hotel in 1886. Peek into the lobby and, except for the traffic outside, you’d…

3. Sonoma Barracks

0.09 MILES

The adobe Sonoma Barracks was built by Vallejo between 1834 and 1841 to house Mexican troops. Today, interpretive displays describe life during the…

4. Mission San Francisco Solano

0.11 MILES

At Sonoma Plaza’s northeast corner, the mission was built in 1823, partly to forestall Russians at Fort Ross from moving inland. This was the 21st and…

5. Sonoma State Historic Park

0.11 MILES

This park in Sonoma is comprised of multiple sites, most side by side. Founded in 1823, Mission San Francisco Solano anchors the plaza, and was the final…

6. Sonoma Valley Museum of Art

0.13 MILES

The 8000-sq-ft modern- and contemporary-art museum presents changing exhibitions by international and local artists, and focuses on building community…

7. Hawkes

0.15 MILES

When you’re in downtown Sonoma and don’t feel like fighting traffic, Hawkes' refreshingly unfussy tasting room showcases meaty Cabernet Sauvignon from…

8. La Haye Art Center

0.17 MILES

At this collective in a converted foundry, you can tour a storefront gallery and meet the artists – sculptor, potter and painters – in their studios.