A little bit about Marin County: (scroll down for information about nearby Sonoma Valley)
Marin County Real Estate is popular because it is an exceptional place to live. It's that simple. Marin County offers spectacular natural beauty, mild weather, the best in public and private schooling, as well as excellent air and water quality, world-class shopping and restaurants, an educated and open-minded population, close proximity to major cities and airports (like Oakland and San Francisco), the original Northern California wine country,culture, lakes, the ocean--you name it. These are only some of the reasons that make the lifestyle, and the real estate, so desirable in marvelous Marin County.
Marin County is located in Northern California, and got its name because it is surrounded by water, except the Northern border which adjoins Sonoma County. Marin County is a peninsula, connected to San Francisco by the Golden Gate Bridge and to the East Bay by the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge. The western border is the Pacific Ocean and the Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA), which is largely preserved open space, dotted with little towns.
Every town in Marin County is unique with it´s own flavor:
Sausalito is the Southernmost City, and is the town that is at the opposite end of the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco.
Next town up is Mill Valley, rated one of ten of the most desirable places to live by CNN/Money Magazine, and home to celebrities like Sammy Hagar (the Rock Star, of course!), Peter Coyote, Robin Williams, and Jill Eikenberry and Michael Tucker (both of LA Law fame).
Tiburon is East of Mill Valley, and the Spanish word for "shark".
Adjacent to Tiburon is Belvedere, an island whose residents boast the highest income per capita in the Country.
Then, North of Mill Valley is Corte Madera, which is loosely translated as "cut wood".
Larkspur is North of Corte Madera and also the name of an indigenous flower.
Kentfield and Greenbrae are next, considered unincorporated Marin County, and they share the same zip code (94904).
Another high profile town is Ross, with large (often Turn of the Century) homes, on large lots, with well-known residents like Sean Penn and Huey Lewis.
Then there´s San Rafael, the largest City in the County and the County Seat--also home to Mission San Rafael Arcangel and the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Marin County Civic Center--among many other things.
West of San Rafael is San Anselmo, the Antique Capital of the County, as well as the town that George Lucas calls home.
Fairfax is West of San Anselmo, and is home to the most night life of any town in Marin County. Fairfax also offers movie theaters, organic groceries, tied dyed t-shirts and incense.
Northern Marin County includes Nicasio, Lucas Valley (Northern San Rafael and not related to George Lucas in any way, except that he does have Skywalker Ranch out there) and Novato, the Northernmost City in Marin County, which was also named by CNN/Money as not only one of the best places to live, but also to launch a new business.
Coastal and West Marin County, include small towns like Woodacre, San Geronimo, Lagunitas, Forest Knolls, Inverness, Olema, Stinson Beach, Muir Beach, Bolinas, Tomales, Point Reyes Station, Dillon Beach and Marshall.
Each Marin County town is totally unique in flavor, residences, weather and offerings. But all you really need to know is that Marin County is one of the best places on Earth to live.
A little bit about Sonoma Valley:
Sonoma Valley is Northern California´s original Wine Country. Just as beautiful as Marin County, but in a totally different way. While Marin County is basically a tree covered, rock hill, surrounded by water, Sonoma Valley is a wide, flat, expansive valley bordered by two jutting spectacularly dramatic mountain ranges. The three main towns are Sonoma, Glen Ellen and Kenwood.
The closer you get to the ocean, the warmer the winters are and the cooler the summers are. So Southern Marin is going to be the coolest spot in the Summer, getting warmer as you head North. Summers in Sonoma Valley are very warm, with some days being downright hot. Winters in Sonoma Valley can be several days on end that are freezing. The grapes love the dramatic temperature changes, as do the residents. You would be hard pressed to find people with more civic pride than the residents of Sonoma Valley.
Sonoma really is very special. There are no parking meters. Really. Life is simpler and slower here. In fact, Sonoma has been officially designated as a "Slow City". Residents often get around on foot or bicycles. The Plaza, which can be considered The Heart of town, is the main gathering place for events. People are friendly, there are an unbelievable amount of truly fantastic restaurants and, of course, wine.
With everything that Sonoma Valley has to offer it, like Marin County, is an excellent place to live, work, play and (of course) own real estate.
To learn more about Marin County and Sonoma Valley go to Area Overview, Local Services and Other Interesting Links.
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