Population: 7,141 approximate
Sausalito is a charming waterfront community located on the southeastern tip of Marin just across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco. Because of its Mediterranean flair and breathtaking views, it is often compared to the French Riviera and arts of Italy.
This unique European style city with its old world charm has long been a popular visitor destination, known worldwide for its natural beauty, its incomparable arts community, the variety of unique shops and restaurants, and its easy accessibility from San Francisco by bridge and ferry. Sausalito offers the most spectacular views of San Francisco and the bay.
There are also some wonderful restaurants along the bay. The best views in the county can be found at any of the waterfront restaurants in downtown Sausalito. Stroll along the water and watch the sea lions cavort, rest in the plaza, listen to the splashing fountain, soak up the ambiance in the many open air cafes, browse through the unique boutiques, or wander through the marinas.
You can visit the Bay Model Visitor Center, a 1.5 acre working model of the bay, Sausalito’s famous houseboat community, or the Bay Area Discovery Museum, which contains interactive displays for kids of all ages. There are many well groomed hiking and biking trails, as well as easy access to Muir Woods and Mt Tam.
History Of Sausalito
Sausalito was first settled in the mid-19th century and incorporated in 1893, making it one of the oldest established communities in the North Bay region. Named by a Spanish explorer for the little willows saucelitos growing along its shores, Sausalito has been a vibrant area since the early 1800s, when sailors, whalers and shipbuilders settled here.
Its tranquil surface varied little over time. But with the successive arrival in Northern California of the Spanish, Mexicans, and Euro-Americans, the stage was set for dramatic change.
With the advent of ferry service to and from San Francisco, Sausalito became the setting for a Victorian village a place of summer houses and hillside estates, populated by wealthy San Franciscans and members of the local British colony. A fleet of British-owned, square rigged grain ships filled the bay below. But Sausalito, by its very nature, invited diversity.
The arrival of the first rail line from the north transformed Sausalito into a transit hum, the connecting link between most Northern California trains and ferries and San Francisco. It was also the setting for a rousing waterfront story, with all its attendant sound effects.
Thundering locomotives, swathed in steam, shaking the earth on their approach; hulking ferryboats with clamoring bells heralding their arrivals and departures, electric trains with their shrill whistles, calling residents, workers, commuters, and travelers to the bustling scene on the town's doorstep.