If you love wine, you won’t want to miss the chance to visit Napa Valley and Sonoma WineCountry – especially at this time of the year when harvest season is in full swing. Napa and Sonoma are within close proximity to San Francisco – both destinations make fun wine-tasting day trips or weekend getaways. Visit a mix of boutique and large-scale wineries, enjoy wine-tasting and learn how wines are made in California’s historic wine region. Sample wines from famous grape-growing regions such as Rutherford, Oakville, St. Helena, Yountville, Stags Leap, Los Carneros, Sonoma Valley, Kenwood, and Glen Ellen.
Napa Valley is filled with so many fun restaurants and wineries. Our favorite restaurants include: Cindy’s Backstreet Kitchen, Rutherford Grill, Taylor’s Refresher (great hamburgers), Tra Vigne, Auberge du Soleil (we saw Robert Redford here once during lunch), Bouchon, Bistro Jeanty and The French Laundry(one of California’s most highly acclaimed restaurants – the food is outstanding!)
A few of our favorite California wineries include:
Castello di Amorosa – (Napa Valley; just south of Calistoga). The Tuscan medieval castle has a Drawbridge, Dry Moat, Great Hall, Courtyard, Church, Tuscan Farmhouse, Lake, Stables, Iron-Gated Entrance, Towers, Underground Barrel Cellars, Hillside Caves, Private Tasting Rooms… Its high-end Italian-style varietal wines are available for tastings and purchase (at the winery only).
Silver Oak Cellars (Napa Valley) One of our favorite Cabernet Sauvignon wines – we highly recommend taking the Silver Oak Wine Tour. Groups are limited in size to give you that “personal touch.” Reservations are necessary.
V. Sattui Winery (Napa Valley) – Allow yourself plenty of time to take a self-guided tour, enjoy wine-tasting, shop for souvenirs (love their Gift Shop), and pick up some delicious cheeses and sandwiches at their Gourmet Cheese Shop & Deli for an impromptu picnic lunch on the grounds.
Jacuzzi Winery – Yes… it’s the Jacuzzi spa family! Modeled after the family’s home in the Friuli Region of Italy, the 18,000-square-foot, rustic-Italian stone building – and the grounds – are truly magnificent. it’s one of the first wineries on Hwy 121 at the entrance to the Sonoma Valley Wine Country – directly opposite Cline Cellars.
No need to worry about drinking and driving – take a fun California Wine-Tasting & Winery Tour (from San Francisco) and leave the driving to someone else. California has very tough drinking and driving enforcement. Cheers!
While visiting San Francisco, take a fun half-day trip to Muir Woods and see California’s Giant Redwood Trees – they’re among the oldest and tallest on earth. The 560-acre park includes six miles of hiking trails, each with different levels
of difficulty, including longer hikes on trails that extend into
surrounding parks. Muir Woods is a very popular Marin attraction and it can get very crowded. If you’re driving, arrive early because the parking lots fill up quickly. We suggest that you take a leisurely Muir Woods tour (from San Francisco) and leave the driving and parking hassles to someone else. 🙂
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