SIGN UP FOR OUR EMAIL TO RECEIVE YOUR FREE SAN FRANCISCO PLANNING GUIDE.
by Jill Loeffler •
Updated: May 3, 2023
Sonoma events in May 2023 include the Alexander Valley Film Festival, the Rose Parade & Festival, French Flea Market, and others. There are also several wine tasting events at local wineries where you can enjoy local wines, live music, food, and more.
Read on for details on this month's top things to do in Northern California wine country.
Disclaimer: I receive a small commission from some of the links on this page.
Date: 4/28 - 5/7
This 10-day film festival offers more than 100 opportunities to discover a variety of films in five different Sonoma County cities: Cloverdale, Geyserville, Healdsburg, Windsor, and Santa Rosa.
AVFest features especially cutting-edge indie films, as well as work that celebrates underrepresented communities and diverse cultures. Guests have the chance to meet emerging artists from all over the world.
To attend, you can choose from single-screening tickets starting at $12 (or $5 for students), a five-pack for $50, or a variety of tickets that include special access to multiple days of the festival events.
Spring has sprung and summer is right around the corner, which means that it is a wonderful time for the Castles & Kites festival one of the best family-friendly Sonoma events in May!
This event is on Saturday from 11 am until 4 pm. The is one of the Sonoma events in May which includes more than 50 kites and 50 sand castles on Doran Regional Park in Bodega Bay.
The best way to experience this fun event is to start at the boardwalk and then walk down the beach. You are encouraged to bring your own kite and build your own sand castles.
The Castles and Kites event is free for all. Make sure to bring some cash as parking is $7 a car.
In addition to these fun Sonoma events in May, you will also find a variety of other fun things to do. Here are just a few of my favorite options this time of year.
Sonoma Wine Country Bike Tour: Ride through Sonoma Wine Country on this 4.5 hour tour, starts in Santa Rosa and takes you to visit two to three wineries, entire trip is about 16-miles (25.7 km), route is mostly flat, check for availability
Food & Wine Walking Tour: Walking and food tour of Sonoma which stops at several gourmet spots for tastings, check for availability
Some of the most popular Sonoma events in May are the local winery wine tasting events. These events are held at the wineries and usually on the weekend days. They include special dinners with famous chefs, walks through the properties with a chance to taste wine at the end, and release parties to sample their newest creations.
You will also find several fun things to do for Mother's Day.
BR Cohn: Lobster Feed (5/13) from 5 pm to 7:30 pm, lobster, prawns, hot links, and more paired with wines, live music
Buena Vista Winery: Mother's Day Flight (5/13 & 5/14)
Buena Vista Winery: Pinot Gris and Sushi Experience (5/21), from 11 am to 2 pm, sushi paired with Pinot Noir wines
DeLoach Vineyards: Spring Winemaker Dinner (5/13)
DeLoach Vineyards: Seasons in the Vineyard (5/20), walk through the vineyard and learn about winemaking, enjoy wine and a picnic
Dry Creek Vineyard: La Vie en Rose: A Rose & Blancs Release Party (5/13) from 12 pm to 4 pm
Dutton Goldfield: Sip & Paint at the Van Der Kamp Vineyard (5/13) from 12 pm to 3 pm, 2 hour instructor led class along with a wine flight and lunch
Emeritus Vineyards: Mother's Day Sparkling Celebration (5/13) from 3 pm to 5 pm, wine and food pairing
Ferrari-Carano: A Taste of Spring (5/6) from 1 pm to 4 pm, small bites, live music and new releases in their garden
Gloria Ferrer: Vineyard Concert Series (5/25) from 6 pm to 8 pm
Gundlach Bundschu: Golden Hour Paella Pick Up Party (5/20) from 5 pm to 8 pm, listen to live music as you enjoy dinner paired with wine
Hawkes Wine: Mother's Day - Portraits in the Vineyard (5/14), have photos of you and your mom taken in the vineyard and enjoy wine
J Wine: Spring Renewal Dinner (5/21), only 25 seats available
Jacuzzi Wines: Afternoon Aperitivo (5/20), from 2 pm to 5 pm, open house with new releases, bites and more.
Kendall-Jackson: Kentucky Derby Watch Party (5/6) from 11 am to 5:30 pm
Landmark Vineyards (5/13): Mother's Day Paint & Sip, 11 am to 1 pm, enjoy wines and bites to eat as you learn how to paint
Pech Merle Winery (5/20): Lobsters Lovers Unite from 4 pm to 7 pm
Rodney Strong (5/7): An Epicurean Adventure from 3 pm to 5 pm, enjoy wine along with sweet and savory bites, live music
Seghesio (5/7): Cooking with Seghesio, Italian-Inspired Spring Lunch, from 11 am to 1 pm, learn how to make cheese and pasta as you enjoy wine
St. Francis Winery (5/20 & 5/21): Culinary Farm Estate Pairings, from 10 am to 5 pm, learn all about tapas styled dishes and enjoy wine at the same time
Taft Street Winery (5/21): Lavender Dreams Sip & Paint, from 12 noon to 3 pm, learn how to paint while enjoying wine and having some bites to eat
Trione Vineyards & Winery: Food & Wine Dinner (5/13) from 6 pm to 9 pm, enjoy wines and a special 4-course dinner made by winery's chef
Viansa (5/13): Out in the Vineyard presents Pink Sonoma Saturday, from 12 noon to 3 pm, enjoy rose wines with light bites and more. Supports LGBTQI+ youth in Sonoma County
Viansa (5/14): Mother's Day Brunch, from 10 am to 2 pm, enjoy a welcome mimosa and then eat a brunch paired with wine, children are welcome
One of the best ways to enjoy these Sonoma events in May is to spend a night or two in this beautiful wine country. You will find several great deals all around the area. Click the links below for details.
Booking.com: Save on your Hotel in Sonoma with Booking.com, Planet Earth's #1 Accommodation Site. No booking fees ever!
TripAdvisor: What's the #1 hotel in Sonoma County? Read reviews & find hotel deals on TripAdvisor!
VRBO: You can also find some great places to stay on VRBO. They offer apartments, houses, cottages, and rooms for rent all around Sonoma County. Find some great places to stay here.
Dates: 5/19 - 5/21
Healdsburg Wine and Food Experience is an annual event showcasing art from Sonoma County as well as both national and international artists. Events take place in galleries around town. You will also find several other events around Healdsburg such as wine tasting and culinary activities.
All proceeds for the event benefit the Healdsburg Center for the Arts.
Dates: 5/18 - 5/20
If you loved the movie American Graffiti, then head to Petaluma this May to celebrate and see the streets where the movie was made. This annual event features a classic car show and festival.
The event is open to the public and you can pay a small fee to enter your car for the show.
The festival is on Saturday, May 20 with other events on the Thursday and Friday leading up to the big festival.
These are just a few of the top wine tasting deals running currently at wineries around Sonoma County. Click the links below for additional details.
Battaglini Winery & Vineyard: $5 Buys You a Coupon for $5 Off a Wine Tasting for Two Plus 20% Off a Bottle of Wine, near Santa Rosa, check for availability
Harvest Moon Estate And Winery: Save on their wine and cheese tasting plates for one, two or four people, near Santa Rosa, check for availability
*Note: Most deals last for 120 days after purchase, so make sure to check the exact terms before purchasing.
Enjoy live music on the Lawn at Viansa every Saturday and Sunday in May. Bands will play from 11:30 am to 2:30 pm on each weekend and on the Monday, Memorial Day holiday.
You can grab some wine, some fire roasted pizza and enjoy the beautiful outdoors.
25200 Arnold Drive in Sonoma.
Comments? Questions? Suggestions?
I would love for you join me in my private Facebook group!
It’s a great place to interact with me and others that know the area well.
You can ask questions, get advice for your upcoming stay, and then share your photos and advice with others when you return home. It’s a great community and the fastest way to get answers to those nagging questions about your visit!