Napa Valley Winery Tour
Together, Napa Valley and Sonoma County make up the most renowned wine region in California—and the country—with more than 400 wineries in Napa Valley and 200 in Sonoma. On this five-day, four-night adventure from Authentic Wine Country, you'll tour some of these vineyards, chat with winemakers, and sip the fruits of their labors. Click to view the full itinerary.
Day 1: After you arrive in Napa Valley, take the day to sightsee on your own. Suggested spots include the towns of St. Helena, Yountville, and Calistoga, a spa town that recalls the Old West with wooden sidewalks and mountain views. There, you can lounge in the natural hot springs and mud bath, or head to the general store, a landmark that dates back to the late 1850s.
At night, you'll stay at The Ivy Hotel, a chic boutique property in the town of Napa. Unwind at the outdoor pool, surrounded by private cabanas and blooming gardens.
Day 2: After a continental breakfast at The Ivy, you and 8–12 other guests will be picked up at 10:30 a.m. for a day of touring the Napa Valley. The driver customizes the exact itinerary that day based on feedback from the group, but tours generally include smaller and historic wineries. As you shuttle along, your driver will expound upon local history and the winemaking process. You'll munch on an artisan picnic lunch, and enjoy a cheese platter and bottled water throughout. At 4:30 p.m., you'll be dropped off back at The Ivy Hotel.
Day 3: Today, you'll journey to Sonoma County—specifically, the town of Geyserville—and you'll receive a one-day ticket of admission to more than 80 wineries in northern Sonoma. The ticket comes with an array of perks that vary between wineries, such as private tours, free souvenir glasses, barrel tastings, or a behind-the-scenes tour with the winemaker. The ticket also includes a free tasting at most wineries.
Back in Geyserville, you'll rest your head at the Geyserville Inn, a charming hotel tucked between Dry Creek Valley and Alexander Valley and near a slew of Sonoma County wineries.
Day 4: The day's main event is a tour of the expansive Lancaster Winery and its underground caves, which extend more than 9,000 square feet. You'll tour Lancaster's vineyards, known for their bordeaux varieties, and check out the winemaking facilities. In the wine cave, the winemaker will pair Lancaster wine with four local artisan cheeses, served by a fleet of tuxedos.
When you have spare time, check out the nearby Healdsburg Plaza, surrounded by antique shops, indie boutiques, art fairs, and restaurants.
Day 5: After a complimentary breakfast at the Geyserville Inn, you'll head home.
Staff Q&A: Napa Valley and Sonoma
Brandy K. is the Director of Brand Marketing for Groupon Getaways. She likes snakes, braised meats, and ballet. Below, she shares her thoughts on late-night snacking in Napa.
What's the most authentic souvenir you could bring back from Napa Valley?
A hangover and a couple of memberships to various wine clubs that you may not remember joining.
What's the best place to go for a 2 am snack, and how do you know this?
Well, it’s not open at 2 a.m., but I like to go to Oakville Grocery and fill my basket with late-night treats. It's small, but you won't be disappointed. After a day of drinking wine, it’s fun to stumble back to your room and break out a baguette and artisanal cheeses.
What makes Napa one of your favorite getaways?
It's a given that most people visit Napa for the wine. But while at the vineyards and wine tasting rooms, remember to drink in the scenery, too — the backlit wine barrels, the-over the-top, Disney-like architecture, the artistic landscaping, and the incredible views at harvest. Take lots of pictures while you're drinking.
I also love the laid-back wine culture—California makes the wine scene so approachable, and whether you’re drinking or eating, your taste buds are in for a wild ride.
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