The City of Sonoma comprises 2.74 square miles within the Sonoma Valley. The Mayacamas and Sonoma Mountain ranges on either side of the valley allow in just enough coastal fog to cool the vineyards on summer nights. Sonoma's "mediterranean" climate makes the valley not only one of the world's finest grape-growing regions, but a wonderful place to live for its 11,000 residents.
In the mid-1800s, the town now known as Sonoma was just a collection of ranchos, governed by Mexico. Even though the U.S. government and the State of California took over the territory not too long after that, you can still sense its heritage. The centerpiece of town, Sonoma Plaza, is still anchored by the northernmost Franciscan mission in California—and it’s even the birthplace of the California State Bear Flag, created by Americans rebelling against Mexican rule. Today, however, Sonoma Plaza is lined with charming shops, tasting rooms, and popular restaurants.
The median household income in Sonoma (2016) is $65,947. About 95% of residents have graduated high school and 41% have earned a bachelors degree or higher. The City has 1,347 business establishments and serves as the economic hub for the larger Sonoma Valley.
Sonoma's unique history, bucolic scenery and world-class wines are among the many reasons it is a favorite destination for visitors from around the world. In fact, Sonoma was recently named the "Best Small Town to Visit in the USA". In addition to being a visitor destination, Sonoma is a small-town, family-oriented community. The Sonoma Valley Visitors Bureau can assist with planning your trip, and their friendly staff will welcome you at the Plaza Visitors Center on 1st St East. Listings of local businesses are available on their website, as well as on the website of the Sonoma Valley Chamber of Commerce, which also provides resources for those looking to relocate their home or business to Sonoma.