Fairfax derives its name from Lord Charles Fairfax, a Baron from Scotland, whose ancestors were given a large land grant in Virginia and who was lured west during the Gold Rush. A popular figure, Fairfax was elected a Marin County Supervisor in 1865, but died young in 1869 after traveling east as a delegate to the National Democratic Conference.
The further one drives out on Sir Francis Drake Boulevard, the warmer the summers are and the further back in time it seems you have traveled. Upon arrival to the town of Fairfax, you have reached one of the most laid-back towns in Marin with some of the best Mountain biking and hiking in the county. Many of the town's residents made the same drive 25 years ago and, realizing they found their bucolic oasis, have stayed put. The area is know for its huge Fourth of July picnics and Big Band parties of the 1960's. Fairfax is an ideal spot for outdoor lovers with almost limitless hiking and picnicking on watershed lands and the slopes of Mt. Tamalpais.
Fairfax is not a big town, but has quaint shops lining Broadway, including variety stores, boutiques and grocery stores. The evening entertainment scene is lively with restaurants and bars featuring live music as well as a movie theatre-- all along the same stretch in downtown Fairfax.
Fairfax gets less fog than most other towns in Marin and has beautiful, long warm summer days. If you plan on commuting to San Francisco from Fairfax, it is best to leave early and return early, or return late as the "rush hour" on 101 and Sir Francis Drake is almost that- an hour.
The historical price trends for Fairfax show a less rapid rate of appreciation than other Marin towns with the 2006 average sale price around $788,000. That price range means that families on a budget can still buy a single family residence for a reasonable sum of money, considering they are still within a 25-50 minute drive of San Francisco.