GuernevilleGuerneville is to San Francisco what Calistoga was to The City in the 19th century.  Guerneville is a small town that caters to eccentric locals, people who love to garden, vineyard owners, and the well-heeled from San Francisco who need a break.  No mineral waters here, though.  The big draw is the Russian River and this laid-back town of comfortable acceptance.

Guerneville is between the Russian River and the surrounding hills and vineyards. There is lodging, dining, shopping, activities, entertainment and more for vacations or weekend getaways.  The ocean is 15 minutes away.  Santa Rosa and Healdsburg are 20 minutes away.

And, of course, there are the redwoods.  The combination of redwoods growing next to a river can hardly be topped.  And, in the summer, when the sun hugs the trees, the scent is unbelievable.  These quiet giants feel like a gentle force that pervade and protect the town of Guerneville.

In the 30s and 40s, this was the place to go and hear live dance bands.  These small places are still here and they’re a good time.  You won’t find five-star dining in Guerneville, and that’s okay.  You’re close to those restaurants in three directions.  Walk the streets and window shop.  There is even an old-fashioned dime store.

Guerneville is a little off-the-wall, and isn’t that wonderful?  Stop in the tourist bureau, and they’ll suggest a slew of hidden gems for you to explore.  Enjoy!

Writer: Meredith Blevins, featured travel writer for the Authentic Wine Country.  Join her at for wine-country mysteries, classes, and the untamed west.

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