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Napa CA Attractions

Beyond the Wine: Napa CA Attractions

Napa CA attractions aren't all about wine! I'm sure you'll want to visit Napa wineries during your visit - yes, definitely! After all, Napa California is world-renowned for its wines and its wineries! And we'll talk a little about them here as well.

But there's a whole lot more to attract you to Napa and to make you want to stay!

The scenery alone is enough! Drive - or better yet, ride a bicycle - through the rural landscape to enjoy the sight of thousands of acres of vineyards covered with yellow-flowered mustard during the Spring, Tuscan-styled mansions set in their midst, coveys of quail fleet-footing it across the tree-lined lanes...

And that's just the beginning!

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Napa CA Attractions: Food, Fun, and Mud Baths


Napa takes its food seriously, too!

Napa is seriously gourmet, ditto green, ditto local, and ditto organic - all of which is reflected in its farmers' markets.

Two of Napa County's best are Napa Chef's Market in the town of Napa, and St. Helena's Farmers' Market in St. Helena!

And speaking of food, be sure to visit the CIA - another iconic Napa CA attraction! No, not the spies - this CIA is the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone. It's a class-act professional cooking school located in what used to be the Christian Brothers Winery at Greystone Cellars. Visitors are welcome!

Food, Fun, & Wine: Napa Valley Wine Train

Iconically, Napa California's most unique restaurant - lunch or dinner aboard the Napa Valley Wine Train is a must-do experience!

Book a trip and you'll experience truly gourmet wining and dining while enjoying the beautiful vistas of the Napa Valley Wine Country as your vintage dining car meanders past the vineyards and castle-esque wineries that dot the countryside. You'll feel as if you're sitting in the Lap of Luxury - and you won't be wrong!

Fun: Hot Air Balloons

Who hasn't at least heard of this Napa CA attraction - Napa's hot air balloons?

There's nothing more beautiful than seeing a group of these kaleidoscopic globes of color floating over the Napa Valley on a bright clear day!

Unless it's the view of the Napa Valley when you're up there in one!

And an early morning hot air balloon flight is a breathtaking experience, whether it's your first time or your 60th!

Beauty: Mud Baths

Speaking of the Lap of Luxury - how does a mud bath sound? It sounds to me like you're about to get pampered!

Calistoga is a charming little town at the north end of the Napa Valley, and it's famous for these Napa CA attractions: hot springs and mud baths.

There's a selection of luxury resorts and spas from which to choose, but just stroll along the main street - you'll find numerous shops advertising mud baths, Jacuzzis and blanket wraps.

Finding the right hotel just got a whole lot easier -

Napa CA Attractions:And Finally, the Wineries

Follow the famous Silverado Trail - so named because it was silver that brought the rush to the Napa area, rather than gold.

With wineries like the outrageously excessive Darioush, and Del Dotto's cave experience, there are plenty of wonderful stops!

But your visit should definitely include Stag's Leap Wine Cellars!

Why? Because in 1976 two Napa California wines won top prize in their respective categories during the infamous Judgement of Paris, a blind tasting competition that pitted French wines against California wines.

The red wine that won was a '73 Cabernet Sauvigon from none other than Stag's Leap Wine Cellars!

But only 40 of Napa Valley's well-over 200 wineries are on the Silverado Trail. The rest - including Chateau Montelena, which won the white wine division of the Judgment of Paris and makes our favorite Cabernet - are scattered throughout Napa Valley and Napa County. Be sure to include some of these in your visit as well!

One of Napa's wineries we can personally recommend to you is Artesa Vineyards and Winery, as we were there in February 2011 with friends, and it was wonderful - built into a hill, with the wine tasting set-up at the top of the hill, the views are to die for and the wine is pretty darned good as well!

For some insider tips on the rites and rituals of wine tasting, don't miss Discover Northern California's Wine Tasting Tips!

Sparkling Wines

These are the wineries which produce what would be - albeit, for where they are produced - called champagnes. But the Champagne region of France has a lock on that nom de plume, so ours are called sparkling wines.

Even if you've toured a million wineries, you'll want to take a tour of one of the Napa Valley wineries that produce sparkling wines - Domaine Carneros Winery, Shramsberg, and Mumm Napa are three that come to mind.

You'll find that, not only are the grapes different from regular winemaking, but the process of producing the wines is also different - making for a truly unique experience!

We'll have more to share with you about Napa County in the coming weeks, including, but not limited to:

  • Napa County Beaches
    Don't look so surprised!
  • Napa County Communities
    Incorporated and not!
  • Napa County Parks and Preserves
    State Parks, Nature Preserves, Marshes and Bogs!
  • Napa County Wineries
    The ultimate of Napa CA attractions!

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