Napa Valley, CA
California
By Amy Meekings

Nestled amongst a state park and wineries, Napa Valley is an area of natural beauty. Despite being most renowned for its production of wine, this area is not restricted to the over 21s. Whether your aim is to sit back and be pampered, to go out and seize the day or spend quality time with your loved ones, there is something to satisfy a variety of interests.

Three major airports serve Napa Valley. Oakland International Airport (OAK) is the closest to Napa Valley, approximately 50 miles south of the valley. The San Francisco International Airport (SFO) is California’s biggest airport and is located about 55 miles away. To the east is Sacramento International Airport (SMF), which is still just 60 miles away. All airports have easy access to major attractions. Looking to book a flight? Click here and search WhatsCheaper.com for great pricing (http://www.whatscheaper.com/flight.php). Looking for a hotel? We do that too. Click here and find the perfect hotel for you (http://www.whatscheaper.com/hotel.php).

Napa Valley is comprised of 5 major towns and cities; American Canyon, Calistoga, Napa, St Helena (named after the volcano which keeps a watchful eye over the Valley), and Yountville. Each area provides it own activities, all of which include wine tasting/tours.

If visiting Napa Valley to do the quintessential wine tours and tastings, there are lots of choices to suit different tastes. You can be driven to various wineries in style in a classic convertible. You can even have a tour crafted to your personal needs and desires. For those looking to work for their wine, there are guided bicycle tours. If you feel like being truly indulgent, take a ride on the Napa Valley Wine Train; an elegantly restored, historic passenger train which provides dining and wine tasting on board. Visit the Castello di Amarosa, a castle built in the 13th century Italian style, which provide tours of the grounds and wine tastings.

While it would be nice to drink the days away, there is much more to do in the area if you’re game. Escape in a few rounds of golf at one of the many golf courses in the region. For something more exhilarating, book a ballooning tour over the beautiful valley and lakes. If ballooning isn’t quite adventurous enough for you, you can try your hand at hang-gliding or para-gliding. Whatever your adventure, the views will be spectacular - at least in a balloon you can wash the view down with a nice glass of bubbly.

To clear your head after a couple of days of wine-tasting, go for a hike in Robert Louis Stevenson State Park. Napa Valley even has its own ‘Old Faithful’ geyser which erupts every 40 minutes. If you want to go further afield for a challenge, you can hike St Helena, the nearby volcano which overlooks Napa Valley. At the bottom of the volcano sits a petrified forest of redwoods, testimony to the power of nature. It is an easy walk around a forest permanently changed over 3.4 million years ago.

This is not just a place for adults. There are museums aimed at children as well as a Safari Wildlife park. It sets the mood by driving you around in a safari style vehicle, with a guide and around 400 mammals and birds to see. While this is good for kids, grown-ups are sure to have a good time too.

While this may not be a place to go out and ‘hit the town,’ you can make your evening with a good glass of wine and good company. You are more likely to enjoy some live jazz in a relaxed atmosphere than to hit a rave or night club. In the evening, attend the Napa Valley Symphony, Opera House or one of the theatres. If you are after a quieter evening, simply visit one of the many restaurants in the area featuring food from a wide variety of cuisines. If you prefer cooking for yourself, look out for one of the farmer’s markets and pick up some local ingredients and whip up a fresh meal.

Napa Valley has a lot more than just wine to offer. Go on, explore, you might just find what you’re looking for.

MUST SEE IN Napa Valley, CA LIST:

  • 1. Napa Valley Wine Train
  • 2. The Petrified Forest
  • 3. Bothe Napa Valley State Park
  • 4. Balloons Above the Valley
  • 5. Castello Di Amorosa
  • 6. Di Rosa Art Museum
  • 7. Bale Grist Mill State Historic Park
  • 8. Old Faithful Geyser of California
  • 9. Joseph Phelps Vinyards
  • 10. Round Pond Estate

Napa Valley, CA EVENT CALENDAR:

  • 1. Volley in the Valley - May
  • 2. BottleRock - May
  • 3. Napa Valley Festival De Sole - July
  • 4. Home Winemaker's Classic - July
  • 5. Napa Valley Music & Wine Festival - September
  • 6. Wine Country Ukele Festival - September
  • 6. Napa Valley Mustard Festival - September/October
  • 8. Napa Valley Film Festival - November

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Hilton Garden Inn Napa
3585 Solano Avenue, Napa, CA
By Lisa Jiardini

The Hilton Garden Inn Napa’s décor is clearly influenced by the wine valley, with muted colors throughout the establishment. Its location is on a frontage road to Highway 29 and is an hour’s journey from three local airports – San Francisco, Oakland, and Sacramento International Airports. Local shuttle and taxi services are available. Parking is complimentary, however, without valet. The hotel is smoke free and check in is at 3 pm.

Accommodations comprise standard rooms, suites, and accessible rooms. All rooms have either king or 2 queen sized beds (except for suites, which offer only king), flat screen TVs with movies charged extra, fridge, microwave, coffee maker, self-adjusting beds, free internet and printing that can be picked up at the Business Center. Suites have a separate area to relax and some also have whirlpools. Accessible rooms have mobility and hearing access with the choice of king bed, whirlpool and roll in shower or 2 queens with either roll-in shower or access tub.

Hotel services incorporate business, fitness, cuisine and accessibility. The business center is open 24 hours, and audio visual as well as meeting space up to 1200 sq. ft. are rentable. The fitness center includes a heated outdoor pool, whirlpool and spa as well as the requisite equipment.  A “Stay Fit Kit” is also provided for in-room exercise. Breakfast is freshly made and dinners are particularly paired with Napa wines in the Great American Grill. Complimentary tasting of local wines is offered in the Wine Bar. The Pavilion Pantry supplies food and drink staples to take back to your room. Accessibility to all public areas, such as the business center, pool, restaurant, is granted to the mobility challenged as well as TTY services for the hearing impaired.

Nearby attractions to the Hilton Garden Inn Napa include wine trains and wineries, such as Robert Mondavi and Sutter Home, which are about 6 miles away. For the family, Six Flags presents Discovery Kingdom and Marine World. There are several companies nearby – Dey Laboratories and Japan Air Lines. Nature and fitness buffs can enjoy hiking, horseback riding, and water skiing. If you are looking for a pleasant place to start your Napa Valley tour, check out this link: (http://www.whatscheaper.com/hotel.php).

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Westin Verasa Napa
1314 McKinstry Street, Napa, CA
By Christine Hall

Located in the beautiful Napa Valley region, home to numerous wineries, most of them family owned, the Westin Verasa Napa is centrally located and convenient to area attractions including wine tasting rooms, golf courses, and The Napa Valley Wine Train.  The 180 room facility includes Disability Accessible Rooms (Service Dogs are welcome) and both standard rooms and suites. It is located at 1314 McKinstry Street near downtown Napa along the Napa River Walk.  All rooms contain the Westin Heavenly Bed® and many rooms have either a kitchenette or a full kitchen for those travelers preferring to cook for themselves.  The Verasa is a non-smoking facility with the only smoking area being located behind the pool adjacent to the River Walk.  There are several packages to choose from including Honeymoon, Taste of France Dinner, and Weekend Getaway.  Check in is at 3 p.m. but arrangements may be made for late check in or for bags to be held prior to check in.

Your four legged travelling companion is welcome at the Westin Verasa Napa (dogs must be under 40 pounds) and you can order a Heavenly Dog Bed, pet bowls, and a “dog in room” sign.  Via the concierge, you can access information on walking and sitting services (licensed and bonded), veterinarians, grooming services, and locations for the nearest walking and run areas.  The Westin Verasa Napa boasts a 24 hour Business Center and a Westin WORKOUT® fitness room containing free weights, resistance bands or tubing, Pilates equipment, and Cardio Equipment.  Enjoy a fresh air alternative to the treadmill with custom running maps.  Created by New Balance, these small maps show 3 and 5 mile run/ walk routes from the hotel.  Wireless High-Speed Internet Access is available in rooms and throughout the hotel.  The heated, saltwater pool and spa/hot tub are on hand for your relaxation.  Massages are offered either in room or pool side.

An award winning restaurant is located on premises.  Winner of the Wine Spectator award of excellence, La Toque is renowned for its elegant but informal ambience and its French cuisine.  The Bank Café and Bar, located off the lobby and on an adjacent patio, provides a welcome location to unwind after your day filled with activity.

Hotel check out is at noon.  Book your vacation now to the luxurious Westin Verasa Napa.  You can start your search with WhatsCheaper.com by clicking here (http://www.whatscheaper.com/hotel.php).

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DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel & Spa Napa Valley - American Canyon
3600 Broadway Street, American Canyon, CA
By Sara Katayama

Walk into a beautifully designed, flowing retreat of the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel & Spa in Napa Valley, near American Canyon. Whichever way you want it, a cozy getaway, or a fun packed family retreat, the DoubleTree by Hilton has got you covered. Upon arrival, they treat your sweet tooth with a warm, freshly baked cookie and that’s just the beginning. A good start, leads to an even better experience.

There are many options for a traveler looking to unwind the lush and scenic view. One could get either one king or two queens overlooking a variety of relaxing milieu. Each room comes fully equipped with a refrigerator, microwave, and complimentary high speed internet; great for a traveler always on the go!
This resort comes packed with an onsite fitness center, restaurant and pool. The spa has many relaxing treatments for one to indulge themselves in. Re-energize with traditional Eastern therapies before dinner or a meeting. The resident restaurant is completely environmentally friendly, serving the freshest ingredients of the local cuisine. It’s almost like you’re eating straight off the vine!

Drive the strip between the Napa Valley wineries or take the train and enjoy the lush and beautiful scenery, as well as explore local attractions, such as local amusement park. There are driving ranges, golf courses and putting greens, all within five miles of the retreat. The DoubleTree by Hilton also does business conferences and weddings. Whether you’re in for the wineries or just a grand experience, the DoubleTree by Hilton has got you covered.

You've heard all the great things about the DoubleTree by Hilton; now there’s only one thing left to do! Let WhatsCheaper.com help you guide the way to flowing countrysides and relaxing surroundings (http://www.whatscheaper.com/hotel.php). 

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