During your visit to the Inn at Occidental grab a copy of An Historical and Anecdotal Walking Tour of the Small (but Fascinating)
Village of Occidental, California
, and take some time to stroll our quirky town and drink in its history and charm. Many of the boutiques and shops offer mementos of your trip, and if you're a pasta lover well this is the place to be!
Its Wacky History
Occidental's first settler, "Dutch Bill Howard" was actually not Dutch, nor was his name Bill Howard. He was, in fact, a Danish sailor named Christopher Folkmann,
on the lam from stealing a military boat. In 1849, he assumed the named Bill Howard and settled on what is now the town's north end. Despite his shady past and the fact that it wasn't really his name, the town was christened "Howard's Station" after him and remained so until renamed "Occidental" in 1876.
In the 1880s, the town experienced its first boom when Italian immigrants migrated to the area. They worked as loggers, farmers, and coal miners and made Occidental their home. Many of the original families still live in Occidental, which explains why its two-block main drag has five (yes, five) family-style Italian restaurants.
Occidental is tucked into the redwood forests of Sonoma wine country a great vacation spot and perfect location for the Inn. Kissed by the scent of both the nearby vineyards and
the crisp Pacific breezes, Occidental is close to all the wonderful things Western Sonoma has to offer.
Occidental also is home to dozens of artists, and local stores feature their handcrafted works and all sorts of other goodies. Meander the small town center and poke your head into Hand Goods, Revival Antiques, Natural Connection, Leapin' Lizards Fun Store, and the many other terrific shops.
The town prides itself as a great place to hear music. Our Redwood Arts Council presents concerts of local artists and world-renowned musical performers featuring chamber music, international folk music, jazz, vocal ensembles, and more. The acclaimed Occidental Community Choir performs its original music here several times a year.
Check with an innkeeper to see what's happening during your visit.