California Wine Country

California Wine Country:  Your Overnight Accommodation Options

Are you interested in visiting California’s wine country?  If you are, you may want to make arrangements to make it a vacation.  After all, many wineries in the wine country area state that you should spend at least two days in the area.  Since you are encouraged to spend as much time touring wine country as possible, you will want to review your overnight accommodation options.

Since Northern Caliornia’s wine country area is relatively large in size, you will find a large number of options, in terms of your overnight accommodations.  With that being said, you are still encouraged to make your reservations well in advance of your trip.  This is particularly true on the weekends.  For that reason, you will want to take the time, now, to review all of your options.

Hotels are one of the most popular ways to stay in wine country.  They are ideal because most are affordably priced. When renting a hotel room, you get the basics, such as beds, a television, and a bathroom.  Although you may find an onsite restaurant, you will typically have to buy or prepare your own meals elsewhere.  For those interested in spending every minute of the day outdoors, a hotel room is a nice accommodation.

If you like the convenience that is associated with most traditional hotels, but want something more, you will want to examine vacation resorts.  Vacation resorts come in a number of different formats.  In California, they are commonly referred to as spa resorts, as many have onsite spas.  What is nice about staying at a vacation resort is that you often gain access to great features, services, and other amenities.  For example, you may gain access to an onsite spa, restaurant, laundry service, and so forth.  Generally, vacation resorts are more elegant in nature than traditional hotels.

Inns are another one of your overnight accommodation options when visiting California wine country.  Inns are defined as lodging that serves both food and drinks to visitors.  Typically, you will find that most inns are known for their food and drinks, but they also happen to offer overnight accommodations above the bar or restaurant.  For many, inns are a great option when hotels or vacation resorts are filled up with reservations.

Similar to inns, are bed and breakfasts.  Bed and breakfasts are overnight accommodations that are popular in wine country.  This is because many bed and breakfast establishments are scattered all throughout wine country, making them conveniently located.  In fact, many bed and breakfasts are located right on the property of some wineries.  One of the many appeals of bed and breakfasts is the small home like feel.  The only downside to staying at a bed and breakfast is their popularity, as they are typically small in size.

Vacation rentals are another option that you have when looking to visit California wine country.  Vacation rentals are one of your most expensive options, but many recommend vacation rentals.  Vacation rentals come in a number of different formats, including homes, cottages, and villas.  What draws many tourists to vacation rentals in the wine county area is their privacy.  Due to having the ultimate level of privacy with most vacation rentals, like homes and cottages, they are ideal for those traveling to wine country with the purpose of achieving romance.

RV park and public campgrounds are another one of the many options that you have when looking to visit California wine country.  RV parks are ideal for motor home owners or renters who must travel a long distance or for those who plan to stay in the area long.  Public campgrounds are nice, as they accommodate to both RV owners and traditional tent campers.  For many, camping is another fun activity all on its own.  Camping is also one of the cheapest ways to stay overnight in California wine country.

As outlined above, you have a number of different options, when looking to travel and stay in wine country.  If you are on a budget, you may want to examine all of the above mentioned options and compare the cost of each.

California Wine Country:  A Perfect Wedding Venue

Are you currently engaged?  If you are, congratulations!  This is an exciting time in your life and you may want to get started with planning your wedding right away.  One of the first decisions that you will have to make is deciding where to have your wedding.  If you do not already have a set venue in mind, you are urged to examine California wine country.  After a close examination, you may be surprised exactly just how much the area has to offer.

As nice as it is to hear that you should get married in California wine country, you may be curious as to why.   For starters, you may live in New York State.  If you live clear across the country, it can sometimes be inconvenient to travel and get married in California.  With that said, it can also be fun, exciting, adventurous, and romantic.  With long distance travel like this, your wedding in California, should you choose to get married there, would now become a destination wedding.  Over the past few years, destination weddings have increased in popularity, especially in wine country.

Despite the fact that destination weddings are increasing in popularity and that many individuals choose California wine country as their destination, locals are also urged to examine wine country.  As a local, you likely already know that there are over four hundred wineries in the state of California.  Many are not only open to the general public, but many also have banquet rooms or other options for hosting wedding ceremonies and wedding receptions, as well as other private events.

Wineries and vineyards are known for their picture perfect looks and feels.  There are many that are just breathtaking.  When getting married, this is the type of backdrop and scenery that you will want to have.  Most wineries and vineyards in California wine country have a beautiful, yet natural look and feel to them.  This type of environment created is sought after by many brides and grooms.  Most want to have a picture prefect wedding, but most also don’t want to have a “forced,” environment and setting.  With wine country in California, this isn’t an issue.

When examining why wine country makes for the perfect wedding venue, it is also important to touch on other features.  For starters, you have a number of different options when looking to plan a wedding reception and a wedding ceremony.  Of course, you have the option of getting married in a church, but many choose to have their wedding and wedding reception in the same place.  It is not uncommon for vineyards and wineries, who are set up to host wedding receptions, to have private and beautiful areas set aside for wedding ceremonies as well.  In wine country, it should be easy for you to find a minister who would be willing to travel to your destination.

As for other aspects of planning a wedding, wine country has all that you need.  In the wine country area of California, you will find a number of professional photographers, DJs, catering companies, and so forth.  In fact, by carefully choosing which winery you choose to have your wedding reception at, you may be provided with a meal options for an affordable price.  Some will actually have wedding packages for you to choose from.  While you will find some variations, wine country wedding packages, should they exist, are likely to include food and wine.

Finally, overnight accommodations need to be examined.  Since California wine country is a well known and popular vacation destination, you will find no shortage of overnight accommodations.  Still, with that being said, it is important to plan ahead.  During peak travel times, such as on Saturdays or from May to October, many hotels and vacation resorts quickly fill up with reservations.  For private and romantic overnight accommodations, you will want to examine bed and breakfasts, as well as private vacation rentals, such a vacation homes and cottages.

As highlighted above, there are a number of reasons why you should at least consider wine country as a destination for your upcoming wedding.  Whether you already live in the great state of California or if you are looking to plan a destination wedding, wine country has everything that you could ever want or need on your special day.


California Wine Tours For Bikes: A Quick Guide

California is one of the must-visit places at the moment for so many reasons. You can experience so much from just one place that it is impossible to get bored. However, you will not have experienced California properly until you go on a wine tour. Certain areas of the American state are all about the wine and this is most definitely the case in Napa Valley. Those looking for something different may still want to go on a wine tour, but something like the California wine tours for bikes. You can easily ride from winery to winery in Napa Valley because there are over three hundred within a relatively small area. You can visit several within a short space of time. California wine tours for bikes may therefore be worth a go!

California wine tours for bikes have a distinct beauty about them. Not only are you riding through the most beautiful countryside in the United States and will be blown away by the stunning landscape, you will also be able to access some of the best wineries in the world. There are some huge vineyards that would take all day to walk around but there are several other little treasures dotted all over the place that you can quite easily visit within the space of a day. Small family businesses often provide some of the best wines and you can truly experience the wine culture in California. Discovering these little gems would be a result of the California wine tours for bikes!

The weather in California is perfect for California wine tours for bikes. The blue skies are present for most of the year and make the bike ride an absolute joy. As an extra bonus for those going on California wine tours for bikes, there are lanes on public highways especially for bikes so you can get from winery to winery without risking your life! You can arrange your own California wine tours for bikes or go with one of many companies that actually provide them as par for the course. There are many of these, but they are matched in number by bike hire places in the Napa Valley. You can hire a bike for the day or book onto California wine tours for bikes that last for a specific amount of hours with likeminded people.

California wine tours for bikes may also be offered as a vacation package with meals and accommodation thrown in. These are fantastic because you spend all week or weekend going around wineries experiencing the win and the atmosphere with people that may become friends! California wine tours for bikes should be a part of your vacation there.

The California wine tour is a must for anyone interested in wine and visiting California. There are many wineries open to the public so it may be worth just taking a few days to explore as many of them as you can. I guarantee that you will not be bored when you get there!



California Wine Caves

What do you picture in your mind when you think of caves? Spelunking or perhaps crawling on all fours to fit through a small space may come to mind. Perhaps the experience of absolute and complete darkness, the degree of darkness so dark you can’t see your hand in front of you? Maybe you imagine more sinister things such as spiders, cobwebs or other imaginable things in the dark. Caves evoke different ideas and feelings to many people. One idea is that of an ideal environment to age fine wine in oak barrels or age a sparkling wine in a bottle.

Caves have been used for thousands of years for aging wines in different parts of the world. In Wine Trail Traveler’s trip to Sonoma and Napa Valleys in California, we experienced different caves. Chinese workers built some caves in the late 1800’s after their work was completed on the railroads. These workers built miles of caves with the use of picks, axes and shovels. In contrast we also experienced caves built with modern technology such as a Welsh mining machine. The walls were then covered with shotcrete, a mixture of sandy cement and pea gravel.

Some of the caves were very clean and lit by electric fixtures whether they were overhead bulbs or elegant electric wall sconces. Other caves were darker and lit by candles or lanterns giving a romantic glow to the oak barrels lining the sidewalls. Some caves showed lichen growth hanging several feet from the ceiling. One wonders why they were never cleaned with a broom or vacuum. We observed thousands of bottles, showing dust resting quietly for years.

Early winemakers who came to the Napa and Sonoma regions in the 1800’s from Europe were familiar with the use of caves. We trekked through two cave systems dating from the late 1800’s.

One advantage of caves is temperature control. The cave temperature is often constant yearlong and varies very little. It doesn’t matter if the outside temperature is 110 degrees F or 10 degrees F, a cave system can maintain an even temperature often between 57 and 64 degrees F. This cool even temperature provides an ideal aging environment for wine. This constant temperature also provides economic benefits for a winery. Fewer resources are spent on heating or cooling a cave than a building. Often the land above a cave can be planted with grapevines.

A second advantage of caves is darkness. Light can harm wines and caves are dark. This darkness is a particular advantage to sparkling wines undergoing aging in glass bottles.

Humidity control is a third advantage of a cave system. Oak barrels breathe. Some of the wine evaporates. If the humidity is high, less wine will evaporate. In some cases caves have reduced the amount of evaporation from 6% to 1%. This also is an economic bonus for a winery since less wine is needed to top off the barrels.

Although the lichen hanging from the ceiling looked eerie at one winery we visited, it actually helps to filter the air in the cave.

Some wine caves have an area that can be used for special events. The atmosphere can provide a rewarding experience. All of these advantages led to an interest in constructing new caves during the 1980’s. Expect to see more wine caves constructed in the future.

California Wine – Sonoma county vineyards

Sonoma county wine region is a part of the famous California vineyards, close to the San Francisco and Napa Valley. Sonoma Valley offers authentic California wine tasting experience, great weather and friendly staff.

Sonoma county is a perfect place for wine lovers, people searching for soothing relaxation and romantic ambiance. Its conveniently located 30 miles north of San Francisco and and now as airport located at Santa Rosa (Code: RSA). Sonoma County has a span of 1575 square miles containing about 1,00,000 acres of lush wine growing land. Having over 200 award winning wineries and about 60 miles of Pacific coastline, the Majestic Russian river, Golf courses, museums, shopping, botanical, gardens, galleries, camping locations, bike & hiking trails and diverse festivals all year around, Sonoma county is the place you should definitely visit.

Sonoma has 5 distinct wine-growing districts: Los Carneros District, Sonoma Valley, Russian River Valley, Dry Creek Valley, and Alexander Valley, with small towns in each. You will find the premium quality wines of both white and red wine, famous categories include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pino, Syrah, Zinfandel, Shiraz and very often vineyards have their own special. Winery hospitality staff are knowledgeable, friendly and eager to discuss the wines and how they were made. Winery tours take visitors behind the scenes to barrel rooms, crush pads, bottling lines, cellars and caves. You will find vineyards all around the county, just driving around the place is very pleasant and relaxing.

Latest Development: Horizon air now has daily flights from Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Seattle airports. Santa Rosa Airport (RSA) in Sonoma County.


* Wine county Ballooning: On US Hwy 101, Airport Blvd exit from Kal’s Kaffe Mocha.

* Point Arena Lighthouse and Museum, 115 ft tall and Steel reinforced concrete lighthouse opened in 1908.

* Luther Burbank Home and Gardens: Life and work of the horticulturist who introduced 800 variety of flowers, fruits, nuts etc..

* Fort Ross State Historic Park: The site of trading post and fort established by Russians in 1812.

* Train Ride: On Santa Rosa 12, a 20 minute steam train ride through a forested railroad park past scaled down reproductions of buildings ad waterfalls.

* Being so close to San Francisco you may also consider visiting the GOLDEN GATE bridge, Pier 39,Alcatraz, China Town and the famous Crooked street of SF Downtown.

* Napa county which is again a very famous vineyard community is located just east of Sonoma county, activities there include wine tasting, Ballooning, visiting petrified forest and old faithful geyser.

You will also find great information at about Napa valley.

Sonoma Country has wet, mild winters and warm dry summers. Summer evenings are mostly cool. The best time to visit is both decent weather and smaller crowds is November or February-March. The wineries are most quite during December through March.

Sonoma County has its own Airport in Santa Rosa but most people prefer arriving at San Francisco airport and then drive north. Oakland airport is also close. There are shuttle buses (Airporter Express) directly from airports to the county.


Jason Smith

Former Marine, IT Guy & Builder of Websites.  I have 5 US states left to visit. I enjoy hot springs, adventures, hiking, photography, sci-fi, wine, coffee & whiskey.  I am fluent in sarcasm, name that tune, & speak in movie quotes.  I spend most of my time building websites, fixing computers, metal detecting, magnet fishing and gaming occasionally.

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