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It’s an abundance of nature and booze in the Golden State’s wine country! California wine country is a collection of towns and cities in the golden state that are leading wine producing regions. The more popular areas in the region are Napa and Sonoma Valleys. It is a premier destination for wine tasting and increasingly for eco tourism as well.
The Californian wine country has hundreds of wineries and attracts millions of wine aficionados every year. The area offers relaxation in beautiful settings with an air of romance. This serene region is only an hour drive from San Francisco. Whether it’s napping in Napa or exploring the exhilarating hiking trails, California wine country will give you a rejuvenating experience!
Wine Country Attractions
Sure – wine tasting is a major draw in the wine country but there is a lot more to the region than vineyards. It is a destination with history, art, luxurious spas, rolling hills and graceful rivers and lakes. It is a great location for exploring nature and there are several ways to do so.
Hot air ballooning is an exhilarating way to take in the natural beauty of the region. The area has vast rolling hills covered in flowers and other natural delights. You can admire the tranquil lakes and rivers. This is perfect for getting away from it all while enjoying a bird’s eye view of one of the most beautiful places in the world. Another way of exploring the enchanting area is by cycling and hiking.
The wine country has always been sanctuary for artists due to the inspiring and harmonious natural setting that evokes creativity. There are magnificent galleries dotted throughout the region. The Healdsburg Center for the Arts (130 Plaza Street) features art pieces by regional artists. The Capture Gallery (105 Plaza Street) offers high-end photography, paintings and mixed media.
Of course when in wine country – the delicious wine is always on the itinerary. With literally hundreds of vineyards in Sonoma and Napa Valleys alone; this is a wine connoisseurs’ dream come true. The wineries vary from the ultra luxurious to more homely estates. One of our favourite wineries in Napa Valley is Quintessa (1601 Silverado Trail, Rutherford). It is a large winery that still manages to retain its charming character. They offer visitors private guided tour of the estates vineyard, wine making facilities and caves. Frog’s Leap (8815 Conn Creek Road, Rutherford) is a delightful winery with lush gardens and a beautiful historic main building known as – the ‘Red Barn’ built in 1884. Scribe (2300 Napa Road, Sonoma) is a family-owned young winery set in a 200 acre estate with a dusty road and a beautifully rundown hacienda. Most wineries in the region are by appointment only and it is wise to book in advance.ion of bars & nightclubs.
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Wine Country Restuarants
The wine country is a culinary paradise with internationally acclaimed chefs and award winning restaurants. The region is known as one of the best agricultural areas in the country and restaurants are never in short supply of fresh produce. The eateries vary from the chic upscale eateries of Napa to the old-world style restaurants in Sonoma. Picnicking is another popular way of enjoying a meal in the wine country, while taking in the wide-open country views.
The Girl & the Fig (110 West Spain St, Sonoma) is a popular restaurant in the region that specializes in French influenced nouveau country cuisine. Angèle (540 Main St, Napa) is a restaurant in a converted boat house. They offer French brasserie classics like roasted cod and braised lamb shank with gorgeous views and an extensive wine list, naturally!
Shopping in Wine Country
The wine country offers great shopping. This is the perfect place to buy distinctive apparel, one of a kind jewellery, antiques and art. Healdsburg in Sonoma has a good selection of boutiques and galleries. St. Helena in Napa is another great location for shopping.
We at Tour America love a good deal and we know you do too! Napa Premium Outlets offers fabulous discount shopping of up to 65% off. They have a great selection of department stores and boutiques. Popular brands that can be found here include; American Apparel, Nautica, Calvin Klein, Banana Republic and Tommy Hilfiger. There is also a Barney’s New York Outlet filled with discounted designer gear!
Wine Country Weather
The Californian wine country is known for its Mediterranean climate. Winters tend to be wet and cool but is short lived. Autumn is a colourful time with changing leaves. Spring brings with it warm weather. During the summer it becomes hotter with temperatures of up to 32 oC. The wine country is a great destination year round with lots to do in every season.
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