Sonoma Orchid Inn

12850 River Rd., (formerly Ridenhour Inn), Guerneville, California, 95446, United States
Sonoma Orchid Inn
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Good For Business
  • Families91
  • Couples97
  • Solo80
  • Business100

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Travel Tips for Guerneville

Ways to relax

by jessicadf

How about an inflatable raft with armrests, drink holder and a hat? Oh yes, and some smooth jazz played on stage, just 100 yards away, by George Benson, Al Jarreau, Brian Culbertson, Stanley Clarke and more? Yeah, life is FIIIIIINE.

Johnson's beach and rentals on the Russian River

by Lornabug

Johnson's is a nice alternative for $20/canoe/day to Burke's upriver. There is a beach with no alcohol allowed (they reserve the right to search your cooler), free parking, and rentals. We just stopped by looking for a place to picnic and didn't stay (we were looking for a grassy table area) but it was pretty packed at noon on a summer Sunday.

Check out the website below for all the good info. Canoe

Rent a canoe

by jessicadf

You can rent a canoe at Burkes Canoes in Forestville and paddle your way down the Russian River four miles down to Guerneville. Canoes hold two to three people and cost $50 per canoe. Kind of expensive, but it's a really fun way to spend the day.

They say you can make the entire trip in 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 hours. I think, however, that's if you don't stop and you paddle hard the whole time. Most people make it a leisurely day, stopping at beaches to picnic, swim, etc.

People along the riverbanks tend to be friendly, and your fellow canoers are always friendly too. Truly great.

When you get out of the river in Guerneville, Burkes Canoes take your canoes, paddles and life jackets and you get on their bus, which takes you back to the top of the river, where you left your car. A great day! Burkes Canoes provides canoes, paddles and life jackets in the rental fee. You'll want to bring with you: bathing suit, towel, lunch in a cooler, a bunjee cord to strap your belongings in to the canoe (in case the canoe tips), sunglasses, sunscreen lotion, a hat... whatever you think you'd wear if you were spending a day in the sun, on the water.

On the Banks of the Russian River

by SteveOSF

"Under the Redwoods"

Guerneville rests upon the banks of the Russian River on land that was once densely covered by giant redwoods. Before logging interests led to the establishment of Guerneville, Pomo Indians maintained an encampment at the site of the future town. They called it Ceola, which meant shady place.

From the mid 1800’s, logging dominated the area. The Pomo Indians were displaced and the great old growth forests were cut down to satisfy San Francisco’s (and other cities’) growing hunger for timber. So many trees were cut down that the town was first known as Stumptown. The town was later named after George Guerne, a prominent local businessman. George Guerne owned a lumber mill that stood at the site of the present day Safeway grocery store.

As the area’s logging became depleted around the end of the 19th Century, tourism began to emerge in the area. This was made possible by railroad service to Guerneville. Eventually tourism became Guerneville’s primary industry. Highways eventually replaced the railway as the main means of transportation to town.

Today the Guerneville area seems to have more permanent residences than summer cottages. Although still a vacation spot, many people commute into Santa Rosa and other North Bay towns. Guerneville has gone through phases of growth, decline, and renewal during the later part of the 20th Century. Today, Guerneville not only remains a nice spot for a getaway, but it prides itself on its culturally diverse population.

31 December 2005 Flood along the Russian River

by jessicadf

"Mark wondered how he'd get across the flooded road"

That is, my mother-in-law has one house on the Russian River and another that is under construction (nearly done). New year's eve 2005 there was a major flood... my husband, Mark, spend numerous hours getting up there (many roads closed) and eventually got across flood waters to help his mother get things out of the first floor of the house... here are a few of his photos.

"Bonnie's house is at the Russian River"

"Some people tried to drive down the road"

And they were stopped by the waters.

"Bonnie's house definitely flooded"

"Early on after water got in the house"

"View of the house that one wouldn't normally see"

Usually there would be some tall fences and trees in the way of this angle of the house

"Hmm. River is at about 36 feet here"

"Kitchen near the end of the day"



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 Sonoma Orchid Inn

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Sonoma Orchid Hotel Guerneville

Address: 12850 River Rd., (formerly Ridenhour Inn), Guerneville, California, 95446, United States