HITCHCOCK’S THE BIRDS Alfred Hitchcock filmed his famous movie The Birds in the towns of Bodega Bay and the small village of Bodega. One of the movie’s most famous scenes was filmed at the Potter Schoolhouse in Bodega. The schoolhouse is now privately owned. The Country Store across the street has some memorabilia on display and offers sandwiches, soups, salads and crab macaroni and cheese.
A COUNTRY DRIVE Take a drive through the rolling hills, apple orchards, redwood groves and old farm towns of western Sonoma County. One of our favorite loops goes through the frontier communities of Sebastopol ("Gravenstein Apple Capital of the World"), Graton (the southeastern-most extent of tsarist Russian colonialism in the early 1800’s), Occidental (once a stop on the narrow-gauge North Pacific Railroad, it had six sawmills in 1877) and Freestone (named in 1853 after a local sandstone quarry). A wonderful place for lunch is the Willow Wood Market in Graton- try the fresh polenta!
HEAD UP THE COAST Drive up the rugged Sonoma Coast to the settlement of Fort Ross (the name derived from the word for Russia). The fort was established in 1812 by the Russian-American Company, a commercial hunting and trading company chartered by the tsarist government, as a vital trading outpost for their Alaskan operations.
THE SCENIC ROUTE HOME If you are driving south towards San Francisco, consider taking the spectacular route down Coast Highway One. This trip takes you through the interesting agricultural town of Tomales (settled in the 1850’s, current population 250), down along beautiful Tomales Bay and through the towns of Marshall (home to great oyster and dairy farms) and Point Reyes Station (home to the 19th century railroad stop from Sausalito).