Located just 50 miles outside of San Francisco, Napa is one of our favorite weekend getaways because it truly has it all: world-class vineyards with phenomenal wine, breweries, farm-to-table dining, and a local arts scene. Topped with a Mediterranean climate and stunning landscapes, Napa will leave you feeling calm, refreshed, and sophisticated, just like its scent in our Experience the Culture collection.
Let us show you how to make the most out of California wine country in this Napa travel guide.
Experience the Culture: What to Do in Napa
Board a piece of Napa Valley history and ride the luxurious Napa Valley Wine Train to visit renown wineries and sip on some of the best wines in the world.
Enjoy eating your way through Napa from Michelin Star restaurants to local mom and pop establishments - because wine is best paired with great food!
Explore other Napa attractions, including the local arts and culture scene, breweries and distilleries, golf courses, and hiking trails.
Take off on a memorable experience in the sky by riding a hot air balloon for the most breathtaking views of Napa.
Where to Eat
Tarla Grill is a Mediterranean eatery located in downtown Napa that offers a spectacular Greek and Turkish fusion brunch spread. They offer creative dishes, like Lebanese French toast with Chardonnay-poached apricots and raisins, while showcasing beautiful pieces of art by local artist, Quent Cordair, and Varto Fine Art.
Boon Fly Café serves contemporary comfort food in an upscale, but cozy and fun roadhouse atmosphere. You can jumpstart your day with their famous Boon Fly donuts with chocolate dipping sauce followed by their delicious chicken & waffles.
Al Fresco Eateries
ALBA Restaurant is a culinary experience that showcases Napa’s local, “high-country” cuisine in a gorgeous riverfront setting at the River Terrace Inn. Specializing in small plates and shareable dishes, catch up with your loved ones over freshly baked cornbread and grilled bone-in pork chop while sipping on a Violet Gin & Tonic.
Brix Restaurant and Gardens is one of Napa Valley’s most scenic eateries located at Kelleher Family Vineyard in Yountville, serving fresh farm-to-table fare with ingredients coming directly from their orchards and gardens. Be sure to order a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon with Kelleher braised short rib while enjoying dramatic views of the Mayacamas Mountains in the background.
The French Laundry is a 3-Michelin Star fine dining experience in Yountville, tucked away in the middle of beautiful wine country. Headed by world-renowned Chef Thomas Keller, The French Laundry serves classic French cuisine with only the finest quality ingredients. Though their nine-course prix fixe menus change daily, past tasting menus have included all-day braised Snake River Farms beef cheek and La Ratte potato “chiffon.”
La Toque is a Michelin Star restaurant with an award-winning wine list thoughtfully paired with French contemporary dishes. They offer unique tasting menus, from their “All Black Truffle” menu that has fresh black truffles in every course, to the Chef’s Tasting Menu that include exquisite dishes like agnolotti with ricotta and North Coast porcini and roasted veal tenderloin.
Stag's Leap Wine Cellars is a legendary winery that received international recognition for their 1973 Cabernet Sauvignon, placing first among ten French and California red wines in a blind taste test at the Judgment of Paris in 1976. Sip a glass of their legacy and enjoy sweeping views of the vineyard from their patio.
Silver Oak Cellars, Napa Valley is located right in the heart of wine country where you’ll be greeted by their iconic water tower as soon as you pull up. Be sure to try their incredible Cabernet Sauvignon, and check out the Glass House Library where antiques dating back to the 1970s are on display along with a history gallery that holds keepsakes from their original winery.
Taming the Lion Wine Blending Experience is a unique opportunity to become a winemaker for a day at the Hess Persson Estates. You can craft your own blend, bottle the wine, add a label, and take home a one-of-a-kind souvenir. Don’t forget to visit the Hess Art Gallery on your way out!
HALL St. Helena is a winery located at the Bergfeld Vineyard at the base of the Mayacamas Mountains. HALL has award-winning Cabernet Sauvignons and a refreshing Sauvignon Blanc and offers guests several winery experiences, including an architecture and art tour at their 150-year-old site.
Where to Stay
The Auberge du Soleil is a luxurious Napa Valley experience, inspired by the South of France but with a Californian flair. The hotel boasts 50 guest rooms and suites with incredible panoramic views of Napa Valley just outside your window. They also offer fine dining on their terrace at The Restaurant, where you can indulge in French-inspired dishes and a refreshing cocktail or glass of bubbles served tableside from their Champagne Cart. It’s the perfect retreat for those looking for an all-in-one Napa Valley experience.
This picturesque resort and spa is a lavish getaway surrounded by scenic vineyards and idyllic countryside. Everything about this hotel is locally-inspired. Their restaurant FARM takes guests on a culinary journey led by Executive Chef Jeffery Jake, serving food from the resort’s garden and eggs from their chicken coop. Guests stay in quaint cottages and luxury homes for a home-away-from-home experience. This destination is the perfect place to immerse yourself in everything Napa has to offer.
Did you enjoy this Napa travel guide with ideas for what to do? Explore other WanderMist collections and scents to discover other exciting destinations.