Valley Ford is an unincorporated community in western Sonoma County, California, United States. It is located on State Route 1 in an area of rolling hills about 75 minutes north of San Francisco by automobile. Like all of Sonoma County, Valley Ford is included in both the San Francisco Bay Area and the Redwood Empire.
Prior to its settlement by Europeans, the indigenous Coast Miwok and Pomo people people hunted, fished, and gathered in the area. A Miwok village named Ewapalt has been documented in the Valley Ford area.
Europeans explored the coastline in the early 1600s but did not settle until 1812, when Russian fur traders came south from Alaska and built Fort Ross about 22 mi (40 km) northwest of Valley Ford. The Russians remained until 1841, when the area came under Mexican rule. In 1850, the year California became a U.S. state, the area was made part of Sonoma County.
Valley Ford had a grain mill in the mid 1800s. Starting in the 1870s, Valley Ford was a stop on the North Pacific Coast Railroad connecting Cazadero to the Sausalito ferry, enabling local ranchers and fishers to export produce to San Francisco.
Valley Ford is home to antique stores, art galleries, curio shops and restaurants: