Sunday, April 10, 2011

"a window into California's origins"

Not only does this grassy town center (about midway between Napa and Santa Rosa) offer a respite from winery-hopping and easy access to upscale shops and eateries, but it also gives you a window into California's origins. This is where California's bear flag was designed in 1846, and the plaza-adjacent mission (now part of Sonoma State Historic Park; admission is $3 an adult) was the northernmost and last of the 21 Franciscan missions, all of which are represented by oil paintings inside.

(Sonoma Valley Visitors Bureau Info: (707) 938-9560,

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