Dillon Beach is a beautiful stretch of pristine coastal land nestled in northwestern Marin County. The main beach is surrounded by grassy fields and rugged rocks. When you book a stay at one of many Dillon Beach vacation rentals, you can enjoy magnificent sunsets and waterfront views. Bring along your dogs so they can freely romp and play on the beach. Pick a spot for your lounge chair, and relax while listening to the ocean waves. The nearby Lawson’s Landing boasts prime fishing spots to reel in salmon, perch, and rockfish. Without further ado, here are the most scenic cities and towns in and around Dillon Beach.

1. Dillon Beach

tomales point
Source: Flickr/Ryan Grimm

Dillon Beach in Sonoma County is the kind of place where lifetime memories are made. Start planning your ideal family vacation by choosing a cabin or luxury home near the beach. Shop for food items at the Dillon Beach General Store, or have a nice family meal at the local cafe. There’s quite a bit of beach to see, and nearby Lawson’s Landing is a great place to fish or hunt for fresh crabs. Go on a Tomales Point trail hike to see magnificent views of the Pacific Ocean.

2. Bodega Bay

potter school
Source: Flickr/Elaine with Grey Cats

The small town of Bodega Bay is the kind of charming place depicted movies. In fact, you can stay in a home not far from the famous Potter Schoolhouse; its white structure played a prominent role in Alfred Hitchcock’s film “The Birds.” After settling into your vacation rental, stroll over to Bodega Head for breathtaking ocean views, whale watching, horseback riding, and awesome seafood dining. Doran Beach is a popular spot for seaside strolls and bird watching.

3. San Francisco

Source: Pixabay/justinat

San Francisco is Northern California’s cultural and business hub and the perfect spot for those who enjoy city life. Secure a luxurious rental home or condo in one of the city’s picturesque historical neighborhoods. There is much to see and do, and fun city tours are a fantastic way to see numerous historical sites, such as The Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz Island. If you love sea animals, make your way over to San Francisco Bay to watch the amusing antics of local sea lions. You’ll also find plenty of shops, restaurants, and live entertainment to enjoy.

4. Berkeley

botanical garden
Source: Flickr/Laura Grace Bordeaux

Berkeley is closely associated with the University of California, Berkeley, and students make up a portion of the city’s population. Stay in a home or bungalow close to downtown to enjoy numerous cultural activities, restaurants, and shops. The city has a laid-back vibe that makes you feel right at home. The sprawling UCB campus is a great place to spend the day. While on campus, be sure to swing by the botanical gardens to see a collection of exotic plants from around the world. If you want to see more of the great outdoors, check out the walking trails at Tilden Regional Park.

5. Napa

failla wines
Source: Flickr/star5112

Napa is the heart and soul of northern California wine country, and this city certainly has lots of charm. Quaint Victorian structures are easy to spot among tree-lined neighborhoods. Rent a condo or home downtown close to fun activities, eating establishments, and local scenic sites. You’ll have plenty of opportunities to eat great food and taste premier California Napa Valley wines as you stroll downtown. Learn the city’s history by taking a leisurely walking tour. For entertainment, check out live acts featured at the Blue Note Napa.

6. Sonoma

Source: Pixabay/tpsdave

Sonoma is a former Mexican colonial town, and it continues to reflect that vintage heritage. Modern Sonoma plays a central role in the Sonoma Valley wine industry. Yet, it maintains a delightful small town aura, making it a cinch to find your ideal home tucked away in a quiet neighborhood. Kids and adults enjoy hanging out at Sonoma Plaza, which is the place to go for local shopping, dining out, and wine tasting. Desire more wine tasting fun? Arrange a wine tour that takes you to several scenic wineries. For fast-paced fun, take a few laps around the Simraceway Performance Driving track.

7. Healdsburg

healdsburg plaza
Source: Flickr/Prayitno

Leave your busy life behind and escape to the peace and quiet of Healdsburg. Located in the wine-producing region of Sonoma County, Healdsburg offers quiet splendor within a cozy cottage or home. The pace of life is slower here, and going on a wine country walking tour is a great way to see the town and local wineries. Double your culinary pleasure by taking a Savor Healdsburg food tour. When you’re not tasting wine, head over to Healdsburg Plaza, a nice place to relax, enjoy a meal, or shop.

8. San Rafael

china camp
Source: Flickr/Tom Hilton

San Rafael is the county seat of Marin County and populates the North Bay area of San Francisco Bay. Vacation homes provide easy access to local shopping, recreation, and cultural spots. Enjoy an array of wines at the Mountain View Winery and Tasting Room. Love architect Frank Lloyd Wright? If so, stop by Marin Center to admire one of his historical landmarks. The Mission San Rafael Arcangel is another beautiful historical structure to see while visiting. If you’re the least bit curious about wild animal care, see and learn about animal rehabilitation at WildCare.

9. Novato

flour chylde bakery
Source: Flickr/Roxanne Ready

Novato is a Marin County city with a mixture of old and new architecture. Choose a luxury condo or home in a family friendly neighborhood for some peaceful relaxation. Feel right at home when visiting shops and restaurants in the Old Town area. Play a round of golf at the local course, and then take the kids to The Space Station Museum for historical fun. Novato has several other museums to check out, making it the perfect spot if you’re a big art lover. For outdoor enjoyment and stunning scenic views, walk the trails at Olompali State Historic Park.

10. Mill Valley

mill valley
Source: Flickr/Bill Taroli

Mill Valley is the ideal place to visit when you want to surround yourself with Mother nature’s bounty. This Marin County town is just 14 miles from San Francisco, and homes are close to gorgeous scenic views that rejuvenate the spirit. Escape into the deep forest during your visit to Muir Woods National Monument. Alternatively, have a blast re-enacting scenes from Indiana Jones movies at Mount Tamalpais State Park. If you’re wistful for ocean views, spend some time gazing at the waters out at Muir Beach Overlook.

11. Santa Rosa

african cow
Source: Flickr/Juliana Su

Santa Rosa is the county seat and largest city located in Sonoma County. Live in a home or condo near popular wine country recreational activities, restaurants, and vineyards. Make your first wine tour stop at nearby St. Francis Winery and Vineyards. The winery is housed inside a vintage style Spanish structure surrounded by picturesque greenery and hills. Family fun places to visit include Safari West, a wild animal outdoor adventure, and the nostalgic Charles M. Schulz Museum.