Apr 19th, 2012 | By | Category: Senior Travel

Historic Petaluma

Petaluma, California was once known as the “Egg Capital of the World,” sparking such nicknames as “Chickaluma”. Petaluma hosted the only known Poultry drugstore and is the place where the egg incubator was invented by Lyman Byce in 1879. One of the largest historic chicken processing plants still stands in the central area of town; this 1930s brick building is no longer used for the chicken industry, but is being evaluated for preservation and change of use. Even though it is no longer known as the Egg Capital of the World, senior citizens learn that Petaluma maintains a strong agricultural base today with dairy farms, olive groves, vineyards, berry and vegetable farms. The city is proud to protect its Greenbelt of farmland.

Petaluma is easy to find, straight up Highway 101, 32 miles north of San Francisco.  For a city of only 55,000+, Petaluma has many charming aspects, the old downtown with its history and the port dotted with many beautiful boats. It is the southern gateway to Sonoma County and its wine country and to the Pacific Ocean coast. Just picture yourself here seniors and look for me, I might just be somewhere in the photos as well.  I loved those cows and the green hills around Petaluma. And Butter & Egg Days makes for a great parade. Travel & Leisure Magazine named Petaluma one of the “Nation’s Top Ten Getaways Near a Major City.”

Thinking about visiting Petaluma and you would like to learn more about the town and the region?  Their Visitors Guide is packed with photos and information about this charming Victorian town and scenic Sonoma County.  Sonoma County is one of the world’s top wine growing regions, a year-round haven with fine dining, lodging and spas, and a flourishing arts community. You can also view the electronic version of the 2012 Petaluma Visitors Guide. Getting there is quite easy and the trip up the coast is exciting.

History, Kentucky Street and the Petaluma River

Historic downtown Petaluma is a great place to stroll around and you’ll find many local shops, unique stores including boutiques, antique stores, restaurants, salons – even a locally owned bookstore and bike shop. There are three great parks to check out and the Schollenberger Park rates very high with senior tourists.

The Petaluma River has a rich history as a “working” river with an active River frontage. If you take a boat ride on the Petaluma River from the San Pablo Bay, you will see many agricultural and industrial uses, older houses, barns, commercial uses, parks, marinas and a vibrant downtown Petaluma. The Petaluma River is an important waterway for industrial uses. Check out the calendar for Rivertown Rivival.

Movies and a National Historic Landmark

Petaluma has been used as the filming location for numerous movies set in the 1940s, ‘50s, and ‘60s. No wonder, the city has a well-preserved, historic city center that includes many buildings that survived the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. Located in Petaluma is the Rancho Petaluma Adobe, a National Historic Landmark. The Petaluma Adobe ranch house was the largest privately owned adobe building ever built in California and well worth a visit.

Great Home Base for Senior Day Trips

Petaluma is the perfect home base for day trips to Sonoma and Napa county wineries, Pt. Reyes National Seashore, the giant redwoods, and many other popular destinations. Families especially appreciate Petaluma’s affordable lodging options so they can drive into San Francisco for the day and not pay big city prices for lodging.  Seems like there is something for every senior,  including outdoor adventures, culture lovers and history buffs in Petaluma. I’d be willing to be that you can get some good egg dishes in almost all of these restaurants in Petaluma. There are a couple of nice B&Bs for you to check out as well as a lodging directory to help with your plans and itinerary.  Enjoy “Chickaluma!”  jeb

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