Contact & Directions

Directions to OAEC

Please respect that we are not open for drop-in visitors. We offer tours, courses, Plant SalesVolunteer Days and other events during which you can visit OAEC.

 

Contact our Administrative Office:

Phone:  (707) 874 – 1557  x 101

Email:  oaec@oaec.org

 

Address:

15290 Coleman Valley Road
Occidental, CA 95465

 

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Driving Directions to OAEC

The Occidental Arts & Ecology Center is 65 miles north of the Golden Gate Bridge. In light traffic, the drive is approximately 90 minutes from San Francisco or the East Bay.

From the San Francisco Bay Area

  • From San Francisco, go over the Golden Gate Bridge and stay on 101 North. From the East Bay, take I-580 at Richmond west across the Richmond – San Rafael Bridge and follow the signs to get on 101 North. Head North on Hwy 101, through Marin and you begin to approach Petaluma in Sonoma County.
  • Take the Petaluma-East Washington Street Exit, and head West (go left over the freeway).
  • Take East Washington Street through downtown Petaluma and continue on this road until you reach the tiny town of Valley Ford (roughly 20 miles away). East Washington St. will change names along the way to Washington St., to Bodega Avenue and then later to Valley Ford-Petaluma Highway.
  • About one third-mile after passing through Valley Ford, take a right turn onto the Valley Ford- Freestone Rd. This will come to a “T” in about 4 miles at Hwy 12 (also called Bodega Hwy).
  • Turn right at the “T”.
  • Go about one and a half miles, then turn left onto Bohemian Hwy into the hamlet of Freestone.
  • Go through Freestone, proceeding about five miles until you emerge from the trees into the town of Occidental.
  • In the center of Occidental there is a four-way stop sign, take a left onto Coleman Valley Road.
  • Go up Coleman Valley Rd. exactly one half mile. OAEC’s driveway is on the right at 15290 Coleman Valley Road.
  • There is a large wooden sign with our name– Occidental Arts and Ecology Center– on it. (However we ask most visitors to park in our “upper parking lot” which is about 100 feet further up Coleman Valley Road from our main entrance. You may come down the main driveway for drop-offs and pick-ups or if your visit is of no more than three hours.)

From 101 North of Santa Rosa

  • Take 101 towards Santa Rosa. Take the River Road exit.
  • Take a right turn onto River Road.
  • Go about 3 miles to Olivet Road, on your left, and turn left onto Olivet. Go about 2.5 miles until you come to Guerneville Road.
  • Turn right on Guerneville Road and go 1.5 miles until you see Frei Road on your left. Turn left onto Frei Road.
  • After 1.5 miles you will come to a large intersection. Continue straight through the intersection. You will now be on Graton Road.
  • Continue until Graton Road ends (about 4.2 miles).
  • Turn left onto Bohemian Highway. Go 0.2 mile to the four-way stop sign. At the four-way stop sign in the middle of Occidental take a right turn onto Coleman Valley Road. Go one-half mile. Our driveway is a turn-off to the right at 15290 Coleman Valley Road.

From the Coast Route Hwy 1 coming from the South

  • Go to the town of Valley Ford, which is just north of the town of Tomales.
  • Just past Valley Ford (one-third mile) take a right turn onto the Valley Ford-Freestone cut-off.
  • After about 3 miles this road will dead end into Hwy 12 (also called Bodega Hwy). Take a right turn onto Bodega Hwy.
  • Go one and a half miles and you will see a turn to the left onto Bohemian Hwy taking you into the small town of Freestone. Go through Freestone, go approximately four miles and you will come into the town of Occidental.
  • At the four way stop sign in the middle of town take a left turn. This puts you onto Coleman Valley Road.
  • Go one-half mile up Coleman Valley Road. Our driveway is a turn-off to the right at 15290 Coleman Valley Road.

From the Coast Route Hwy 1 coming from the North

There are two ways to get to OAEC:

  • The first would be just past the town of Jenner, take a left turn onto Hwy 116 (also called River Road), heading East towards Santa Rosa. When you come into the town of Monte Rio, take a right turn just where you see the movie theatre in a large quonset hut. Go over the small bridge. Take a right turn after the bridge. This will put you on Bohemian Hwy. Go about 5 miles down Bohemian Hwy. You will come into the town of Occidental. At the center of Occidental there is a four-way stop sign. Take a right turn onto Coleman Valley Road. Go one half mile. Our driveway is a turn-off to the right at 15290 Coleman Valley Road.
  • The other way is “the scenic route” – slower and hillier – but the drive along Coleman Valley Road is considered one of the most scenic in Sonoma County. After Jenner, continue on Hwy 1 further south until you pass Schoolhouse Beach. Shortly after Schoolhouse Beach on the left will be a turn-off onto Coleman Valley Road. (It is sometimes a bit difficult to find the turn-off.) You will go about 10 miles along Coleman Valley Road and, as you come down into the town of Occidental, keep your eyes peeled for our turn-off to the left at 15290 Coleman Valley Road just as you start to head downhill. It’s a bit hard to spot if you don’t know it and are coming in from the coast. If you’ve come into Occidental, turn around and go back up one-half mile and on the right will be our driveway at 15290 Coleman Valley Road.

Public Transit and Carpooling

Occidental is off the path of convenient public transit, though buses do come to Occidental from Santa Rosa. You can get bus information from Sonoma County Transit.

We encourage and will help to facilitate carpooling, particularly among course participants.

Airport Information

Taxis

It costs about $45-55 to get from the Airport Express drop-off in Santa Rosa to Occidental via taxi.

  • Yellow Cab – (707) 544-4444
  • A-C Taxi  – (707) 777-7777

 

Parking Upon Arrival at OAEC

Guest parking is in our Upper Lot (the 2nd OAEC driveway on your right when driving up from the town of Occidental).

  • From the town of Occidental, drive up Coleman Valley Rd. for a 1/2 mile until you see the main OAEC entrance on your righthand side. About 100 feet beyond that, you will see a second OAEC driveway on your right that is enclosed with a metal gate. The gate opens automatically when you pull up to it.
  • If you see our Biodiversity Nursery greenhouses in front of you, then you’re in the right place! Park in the lot and follow the gravel road down to our Core Area.
  • To unload your personal items (if staying for a residential course or training), drive into OAEC’s main driveway and park anywhere in an open space. After unloading, please move your car to the Upper Lot.
OAEC Parking

OAEC Parking – 2nd driveway on the right from the town of Occidental