We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Informative Museum and Interesting Fort”

Fort Ross State Historic Park
Book In Advance
More Info
$20.00*
and up
Fort Ross State Historic Park Walking Tour
Ranked #1 of 8 things to do in Jenner
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: As of November 3rd, we are open only on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays (closed on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays) through March 15th. In addition we are open on state holidays: January 1 & 19, February 16, March 31, May 25, July 4th, September 7, November 11, Closed Thanksgiving & Christmas Day. Open December 22nd, 23rd, 24th and from December 26th to January 2nd. Because of Sacramento budget cuts, our days of operations vary with the season. Originally built by Russians in 1812, Fort Ross became a state park in 1909. Today the 3,400 acre park offers pristine natural landscapes as well as historic structures and exhibits that bring to life the former Imperial Russian settlement, early California Ranch era, and the Kashia territory. Our visitor center showcases a museum, bookshop, and an 18-minute video introducing the park's history. Some points of interest: Russian Orthodox chapel, replica Russian-style windmill, historic buildings and exhibits, cannons, historic cemetery and orchard, and a San Andreas Fault marker. You can also enjoy Sandy Cove Beach and numerous trails. Activities include hiking, swimming, marine mammal watching, and more.
Reviewed July 14, 2013

We had not driven north on Hwy 1 beyond Jenner before. This time, we did this trip especially to visit Fort Ross, having seen in the website about an upcoming Festival in late July. The drive up here is winding and interesting. Seniors are charged $7 per car, compared to the normal $8 per car. The first stop in the parking lot is for the museum. Very interesting exhibit about the local natives in this area and the Russian company. We then walked down to the Fort (about 10 minutes). Very well preserved and great for taking photos. It will take a much longer walk to the beach and then to the cemetery, so we did not take that hike. Later, looking at the state park map, we saw a day use and camping area of the park which can be reached south of this main entrance.

1  Thank Stephen L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sarichka_1812, Public Relations Manager at Fort Ross State Historic Park, responded to this reviewResponded July 12, 2014

Dear Stephen L,

Thank you for your review and lovely pictures. Lots of good info for future guests.

A bit of good news from Fort Ross, we are now open Thursday through Monday 10 am- 430 pm until Labor Day 2014!
We are all so pleased to be open more days for our visitors.
Thanks for all your support!

Best,

Sondra Hunter
Fort Ross Conservancy

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (335)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
All reviews
"visitor center"
in 21 reviews
"interesting history"
in 15 reviews
"california history"
in 13 reviews
"original building"
in 5 reviews
"native californian"
in 4 reviews
"windy road"
in 4 reviews
"north america"
in 5 reviews
"living quarters"
in 4 reviews
"coastal highway"
in 5 reviews
"gift shop"
in 16 reviews
"history lesson"
in 5 reviews
"timber cove"
in 3 reviews
"wander around"
in 4 reviews
"fascinating place"
in 3 reviews
"natural beauty"
in 4 reviews
"well worth the stop"
in 4 reviews
"the pacific ocean"
in 5 reviews
Filter

250 - 254 of 335 reviews

Reviewed July 13, 2013

Fort Ross is in a rather isolated location, 10 miles north of Jenner, California. The fort is decent as an historical site, though support facilities (such as restrooms) were lacking due to some construction and remodeling going on, leading to a bank of "port-a-potties". The visitor center has an informative video playing, and the gift shop has a lot more quality items than most gift shops - good books, and a number of Russian made gifts.

The drive to Fort Ross is a bit hairy - California Highway 1 twists and winds along the side of the coast, and the 10 miles from Jenner is about a 25-30 minute drive. The weather is often foggy, but if its sunny the views are a treat, with frequent turnoffs to take it in - or take pictures.

Not surprisingly a number of guests at the park the day we were there were Russians - that Russia had a toehold in California is not well known, and Fort Ross featured both the first windmill and the first glass windows in California.

Cost to enter the park is reasonable - $8 a car - and even my 12 year old daughter found it interesting. The drive is a bit taxing, but well worth the effort.

1  Thank Happyrocker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sarichka_1812, Public Relations Manager at Fort Ross State Historic Park, responded to this reviewResponded July 12, 2014

Hello Happyrocker,

Thank you for your thorough review and beautiful pictures. Lots of great info for future visitors. I'm glad to hear t you felt the $8 entrance fee was well worth it. Every little bit helps to keep our CA parks open.

I am thrilled to announce that since you were here, all construction has been completed, we now have new lovely facilities. No more Port-a-potties, yay! Thanks for your patience during that time.

A bit of good news from Fort Ross, we are now open Thursday through Monday 10 am- 430 pm until Labor Day 2014!
We are all so pleased to be open more days for our visitors.
Thanks for all your support!

Best,

Sondra Hunter
Fort Ross Conservancy

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 12, 2013

Worthwhile to stop here if you have the time. $8 entrance fee, visitor's center with displays and video. Walk back to the fort and take a self-guided tour. There were rangers who also provided information. We were fortunate to be there on the one day a month they open the Call House, but unfortunate that the timing did not work out for us to see inside.
There is some renovation in progress and hopefully the bathroom situation will be fixed soon. There are two outhouse facilities within the fort itself, and port-a-potties near the visitor center.
Would be nice if the visitor center had some snacks and beverages. The woman at the counter seemed confused by my request to purchase bottled water and offered me a cup for the fountain, which was sweet. She did look around and find a few bottles of water available for sale.
We were glad we stopped here. Enjoyed the fort and imagining life in 1800's and learning about a part of our California history with which we were previously unfamiliar.

2  Thank MTLtravelerRD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sarichka_1812, Public Relations Manager at Fort Ross State Historic Park, responded to this reviewResponded July 12, 2014

Dear MTLtravelerRD,

Thank you for your review. I am thrilled to announce that our facilities are complete! All the construction that was under way last year is done. That was an ordeal, thank you for your patience.

A bit of good news from Fort Ross, we are now open Thursday through Monday 10 am- 430 pm until Labor Day 2014!
We are all so pleased to be open more days for our visitors.
Thanks for all your support!

Best,

Sondra Hunter
Fort Ross Conservancy

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 8, 2013 via mobile

So you've decided to take a family trip on beautiful Hwy 1 up the Northern California Coast. Everyone's stir crazy or car sick. You could stop at one of the dozens of pristine beaches and then for the rest of the trip everyone is stir crazy, car sick, covered with sand, and wearing soggy shoes. Or you could stop at Fort Ross on a bluff above the water. With plenty of grassy areas to run off some energy, nice picnic grounds, bathrooms, and a really cool Fort and visitor's center with reconstructed walls, buildings, a church, canons, great ocean views, and bleached white sea lions sunning on the rocks. It's a state park and costs $8 to park , but this could be the best $8 you spend on your trip. Note they are remodeling the grounds right now but they let us tour the fort anyway. It should look great when it's done, and it's great to see California tidying up its infrastructure again.

2  Thank Janet B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sarichka_1812, Public Relations Manager at Fort Ross State Historic Park, responded to this reviewResponded July 12, 2014

Dear goldchevy,

Thank you for your review. Great info for future guests. There is so much to see and do here at Fort Ross, it's true. I'm so glad you and the family enjoyed your time here. Thank you for your positive view of spending the $8 entrance fee, all our visitors help to keep us open, so that $8 really counts.

Since you visited, all that construction has been completed. We have brand new facilities, all new ADA trails from the parking lot down to the Fort compound, and new picnic areas and tables. Now we are working on installing ADA trails within the compound. Hope to have those done soon.

A bit of good news from Fort Ross, we are now open Thursday through Monday 10 am- 430 pm until Labor Day 2014!
We are all so pleased to be open more days for our visitors.
Thanks for all your support!

Best,

Sondra Hunter
Fort Ross Conservancy

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
See more reviews
Reviewed July 6, 2013

Out for a drive and a picnic, stumbled upon this hidden gem. Great park, beautiful visitors center, and fact filled docents to take you back in time to the days of the native Americans, Russians, and the Call family who were the inhabitants and proprietors of this big beautiful park. We weren't prepared for the chilly weather so we didn't see all that the park had to offer. We will definitely return to take advantage of the trails. The only negative, and it is a temporary one is the bathroom situation. The visitor center grounds are undergoing some upgrades and I hope new bathroons are in the works because the portopotties were GROSS!

2  Thank Ann B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sarichka_1812, Public Relations Manager at Fort Ross State Historic Park, responded to this reviewResponded July 12, 2014

Dear Ann B,

Thank you for your review. Great tips for future visitors! Yes, it can be very cold here any time of the year, so bring layers. A great spot to picnic is in the Call Picnic area. Even when windy and cold, somehow it stays warm and pleasant in there.

I am also thrilled to announce, they have finished our bathrooms and they are lovely. No more Porta-Potties :) Yay! I am sorry you had to experience those.

Please come back and check out our new facilities.

A bit of good news from Fort Ross, we are now open Thursday through Monday 10 am- 430 pm until Labor Day 2014!
We are all so pleased to be open more days for our visitors.
Thanks for all your support!

Best,

Sondra Hunter
Fort Ross Conservancy

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Fort Ross State Historic Park also viewed

Jenner, Sonoma County
 
Bodega Bay, Sonoma County
 

Been to Fort Ross State Historic Park? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing