Considered one of the premier wine regions in the world, Napa Valley, located in California, is the perfect couple getaway for adults who love and appreciate wine and remarkable vineyards. Today, Napa Valley features approximately 450 wineries that are located about 50 miles northeast of San Francisco and 60 miles west of Sacramento. Napa Valley is 30 miles long and combines a Mediterranean climate, geography, and geology all perfect for growing superior wine grapes.
Top Attractions in Napa Valley
Castello di Amorosa Winery
This uniquely designed Tuscan castle winery is simply breathtaking. Visitors will view a moat and drawbridge while tasting some delicious wine. The tour and tasting lasts 1.5 hours. It is recommended that visitors make reservations. The winery is open to the public from 9:30 to 4:30 daily. Sometimes, hours are extended a bit on the weekends. The basic tasting and tour of some of the rooms costs $17 per person. On Sunday mornings, visitors can attend a beautiful Latin Mass in the Saint Catherine Siena Chapel. 4045 N. St. Helena Highway | Calistoga, CA
City Winery Napa
Conveniently located in the heart of downtown Napa, City Winery Napa provides live entertainment, appealing food, a tap wine bar, and other various special events. Additionally, the service is great and prices are reasonable. There is outdoor seating and a full bar. Seating in the performance area consists of cocktail tables, so be sure to arrive early if wanting to grab a table and enjoy the show. Balcony seats are also available. It is a hidden gem and will prove to be a unique experience.
Napa Premium Outlets
Take a break from indulging in wine and food and head out to Napa Premium Outlets to do some shopping. Adidas, Ann Taylor Factory Store, Banana Republic Factory Store, Michael Kors, Coach, Calvin Klein, Cole Haan, Gymboree, J.Crew, Kenneth Cole, Levis and Tommy Hilfiger are some of the well-known stores showcasing prices of 25% to 65% off. 629 Factory Stores Drive, Napa, CA 94558
Oxbow Public Market
Conveniently located in downtown Napa, this market serves as a gathering place for delicious food and tasty wine. It is a favorite not only among locals, but tourists as well. There is always an event in progress, whether it is live music, cooking demos, wine and beer tasting, or the farmers market. Here, visitors can find local ingredients, customs, and culture native to Napa Valley. Fresh meat, cheese, organic produce, baked bread, and olive oil are a mere few of the favorites found at this establishment. People can sample everything from tacos to oysters either indoors or outdoors. Many choose to sit outside on the scenic deck as it overlooks the Napa River. In addition to food and wine, patrons will also come across custom designed and fabricated indoor and outdoor furniture, as well as awesome collectables and exclusive souvenirs.610/644 First Street, Napa, CA 94559
Open daily for wine tours and tastings, Paraduxx Winery in Napa Valley offers an exclusive occasion to taste and enjoy premium wines in a contemporary setting. While participating in an outdoor tasting, visitors will take in an awesome view of the vineyards. Cheese accompanies every tasting; it is a great snack for soaking up the delicious wine. Guests will receive tableside service, including modern stemless glassware. The views are amazing! 7257 Silverado Trail, Napa, CA 94558
Robert Mondavi Winery
Experience one of the most visited and toured winery in the Napa area. Wide selections of programs are available for beginners as well as advanced wine makers. There are two tasting rooms on property that feature special release and reserve wines by the glass. Visitors are able to discuss various wines with extremely knowledgeable educators. Upon entering, visitors always admire the elegant arches and sprawling courtyard. 7801 St. Helena Hwy, Oakville, CA 94562
Silverado Resort and Spa
With most wineries closing by 6PM, guests of Silverado find the Mansion Lounge to be the ideal end to a long, fun day of wine tasting. The stone fireplace is a great place to gather with friends and enjoy a few cocktails. On a starry night, head out to the Patio Terrace, which is a glass-walled portico that guarantees a spectacular view. The Mansion Lounge is open at 4PM on Tuesdays through Saturday. Closing times vary. 1600 Atlas Peak Road, Napa, CA 94558
Napa Valley Wine Train
Providing a three-hour, 36-mile round trip journey from the historic town of Napa, one will experience an awesome tour. Guests will enjoy a freshly prepared lunch or dinner inside a Pullman Dining Car, or Vista Dome car as they sip on wine and pass through the vineyards and wineries native to Napa Valley. The Wine Train begins its journey at the McKinstry Street Station in the heart of downtown Napa. The Train then travels north to St. Helena. Depending on the day of the week, the train stops at different locations.
Pick the time right!
Tourists visit Napa Valley from August to October
Napa prides itself in being an excellent choice for travel during any season. During the fall, workers are often found in the fields because this is harvest season. Most of the work is completed very early in the morning because there is less damage to the grape clusters when the temperature of the grapes is cool. Daytime temperatures can soar into the 90s during the autumn months of September, October, November; October and November begin to cool off a bit. Fall is a very popular time for tourism, so be sure to make reservations early.
Looking to save money? Head to Napa during the winter months of January and February. Although a bit rainy and cool, with temperatures in the 40s and 50s, hotel room prices dramatically decrease and the best seats in restaurants are available.
Three international airports and one domestic airport typically serve Napa Valley: San Francisco International Airport (SFO), Oakland International Airport (OAK), Sacramento International Airport (SMF), and Santa Rosa Airport (STS). The three international airports are each approximately 60 miles away (85 kilometers), which amounts to 1.5 hours of driving time depending on the time of day. Santa Rosa Airport is approximately 35 miles away, but will cost more.
- Greyhound www.greyhound.com operates from San Francisco to Santa Rosa and Vallejo for $16; transfer for local buses.
- Golden Gate Transit www.goldengate.org operates bus 70/80 from San Francisco to Petaluma ($6.90) and to Santa Rosa ($7.60); catch it at 1st and Mission Sts., across from the Transbay Terminal.
- Napa Valley Vine www.nctpa.net operates bus 10 from the Vallejo Ferry Terminal and Vallejo Transit bus station, through Napa to Calistoga ($2.50); it also runs local trolley services in Napa ($1).
- Downtown Napa Trolley www.nctpa.net operates without charge and makes a loop around downtown, every 20 minutes, 11am to 6pm Monday through Wednesday, 11am to 8pm Thursday and Sunday and 11am to 11pm Saturday.
- Amtrak www.amtrak.com trains travel to Martinez (south of Vallejo), with connecting buses on to Napa (40 minutes), Santa Rosa (1½ hours) and Healdsburg (1¾ hours).
- BART trains www.bart.gov run from San Francisco to El Cerrito (40 minutes), where you need to transfer to Vallejo Transit www.vallejotransit.com for Vallejo (30 minutes); then you take Napa Valley Vine buses to Napa and Calistoga.
- Flying Horse Carriage Company www.flyinghorse.org; 3hr tours per person $95 See the Alexander Valley from the back of a horse-drawn carriage on a three-hour tour. Bring a picnic lunch.
- Wine Country Cable Car Shuttle www.cablecarcharters.com; per person $30; Fri-Sun May-Oct Open-sided trolley cars make a continuous loop from the Healdsburg Plaza through the Alexander and Dry Creek Valleys, stopping at 12 wineries along the way; riders hop on and off the shuttles as they like. The first car leaves at 9:45am, the last at 4:45pm.
- Wine Country Jeep Tours www.jeeptours.com; 3hr tour $75 Tour Wine Country’s back roads and boutique wineries by Jeep