Ways to Honeymoon in Napa Valley on a Budget

A honeymoon in Napa Valley will sure be a beautiful and memorable one — but it can really get pretty expensive! However, it is not impossible to have a honeymoon in the Wine Country on a budget — because you surely can, if you are smart, resourceful, and creative. Here are some tips to help you avoid paying the full price and still be able to enjoy a lovely honeymoon in Napa.

First, you should decide what activities you want in your honeymoon. If you and your new spouse mostly want to be pampered in Napa Valley, you can book hotels or any other lodgings nearby spa and wellness resorts in advance. If both of you love wines and winemaking, make sure to choose a suite that is near lots of wineries. Or if nature-tripping and adventure is more of a priority, make sure that you have enough money for week-long hiking and camping trip — Napa Valley offers miles of hiking trails and many of them have nice picnic spots to have some gourmet lunches.

Do you want to spend your honeymoon in the Napa Valley on Christmas, Thanksgiving, or Valentine’s Day? Look for hotels that offer seasonal/holiday packages which may include deluxe rooms with a large bed, a romantic dinner for two, a Jacuzzi or a spa, and some wine tours. You should also keep an eye out for all-inclusive romantic packages in Napa Valley no matter the season, and they come in prices that can fit your budget.

Although Napa Valley is notoriously expensive, you can snag great deals by visiting the Napa Valley Welcome Center (or Napa Valley Visitor Center) in downtown Napa. If your main priority for your honeymoon is tasting wines (especially if you and your spouse are wine lovers), you will be able to get wine tasting coupons and incredible discounts for wineries and tasting rooms. If you want to max out your wine-filled honeymoon, purchase a $30 wine tasting card from the Napa Valley Welcome Center or the Napa Tourist Information Center and enjoy sampling at twelve complimentary tastings from tasting rooms.

Booking early at hotels in Napa means that not only can you snag available rooms, you can also take advantage of the special deals and discounts as well. For example, if you book a room early at a certain hotel you can save up to 15% to 20%! Booking a hotel or airline online also greatly helps as they also offer awesome bonuses like airline miles.

You may also want to have a honeymoon in Napa Valley during the off-season. Summer is Napa Valley’s peak season with crowds, jam-packed hotels, restaurants and tasting rooms — not to mention rising prices. Napa during the off-season means sparse crowds and incredible discounts offered by hotels and other lodgings. Winter in Napa can be really quiet and a lot of the wineries and other establishments would be closed for most of the season (especially during Christmas and New Year’s Eve/New Year). But for wineries and tasting rooms that are still open in the winter, take advantage of the sparse crowds and for a quiet, hassle-free visit to these wineries and tasting rooms. You will be able to concentrate and really enjoy the wines and learn the process of winemaking.

A lot of transportation operators also offer packages with popular prices to match. Of course, you will want to choose packages made for couples that are also budget-friendly. Some hotels and lodgings partner with transportation companies and together they offer special tour packages. The Napa Valley Wine Train, for example, offers free rides for couples plus a romantic on-board dinner for two when you book a stay at one of its partner hotels.

Riding a hot air balloon over Napa Valley could be the most romantic thing any honeymooners have ever done. Flying over the gorgeous Napa landscape in a hot air balloon could be really symbolic — it’s like taking your love to the next level!

View the neat and lush rows of vineyards and the famous valleys. Take lots of your first “just married” selfies with the stunning Napa landscape in the background — the neat and lush rows of vineyards, the famous valleys, the mountains, and the rolling hills. Any season could be a good time for hot air balloon ride in Napa, even in the winter! In addition, take lots of pictures or even yet make your first toast as a married couple — but be careful not to get tipsy!

Hot air balloon rides can be pricey. But if you want to make the most of the moment, you might as well choose a hot air balloon ride package that will also include other activities such as conventional wine tours and lovely outdoor picnics. Choose Balloons Above the Valley (BATV), which has been offering top-rated hot air balloon rides for over 40 years. We feature hot air balloon packages that will suit your preferences:

  1. Sunrise Balloon Flight & Brunch ($209 per person)
    – Pre-flight breakfast
    – Sunrise hot air balloon flight
    – Post-flight brunch with champagne
  2. Sunrise Balloon Flight – Champagne Brunch – Wine Tour $608 for two passengers
    – Pre-flight breakfast
    – Sunrise hot air balloon flight
    – Post-flight brunch with champagne
    – Six-hour wine tour
    – Picnic lunch
  3. San Francisco Balloon & Wine Tour Package ($836 for two persons)
    – Seven-hour wine tour from San Francisco aboard a limousine PLUS onboard Continental breakfast with mimosa
    – Stop at vista point to view the Golden Gate Bridge
    – Visits to 2 wineries in Napa and 2 wineries in Sonoma
    – Picnic lunch
    – Olive oil tasting
    – Vineyard and production tour at one winery
    – Pre-flight breakfast
    – Sunrise hot air balloon flight
    – Post-flight brunch with champagne
    – Options for shopping and sightseeing in downtown Napa
    – Transfer to ferry terminal
    – Ferry tickets

If you want more intimate moments with your new spouse, you can choose BATV’s “Exclusive Flights” option where you can enjoy the hot air balloon basket space virtually alone and a private table at the post-flight brunch. You may contact BATV’s office for Exclusive Flights pricing and assistance.

If you follow these tips, you will realize that it is really possible to enjoy a honeymoon in Napa Valley on a budget. Make the moments between you and your loved one count the most, not the cost!

Vacations in Napa Valley Can Be Spontaneous

Sometimes, you don’t really have to have a reason to pack up and head out for a getaway. For instance, vacations in Napa Valley can be really done on an impulse. It feels quite delightful, exciting, and refreshing to have spontaneous travels and to “get quite caught up in the moment” as it provides a sudden break in a boring routine.

Spur-of-the-moment vacations or getaways in Napa Valley do not require much planning. Sometimes you plan them just a day or night before on a very short notice, but most of the time you make last-minute decision trips. Just pack your bags, turn on your car’s engine, or get aboard a bus, train, or an airplane … and go to the Wine Country which offers otherworldly sights and delightful pleasures. You may go there alone or have a friend to tag along in your spontaneous adventures! As long as you’ve got enough funds at hand, you can spend a day or two, visit wineries, and buy treats and souvenirs to your heart’s content.

If you want to do some wine tours in Napa as soon as you get there, you’ll need to find wineries that accept walk-in visitors. Most wineries in Napa require appointments and guests really have to book their reservations for wine tours and wine tastings. However, you can find a few wineries that are open to tastings for walk-in visitors such as Alpha Omega, Beaulieu Vineyard, Artesa Winery, Black Stallion Estate Winery, Chateau Montelena, Clos du Val, Cliff Lede Vineyards, Clos Pegase, Domaine Chandon, Mumm Napa, and Rutherford Hill Winery. Many of these wineries like Artesa Winery and Mumm Napa also function as art and photography galleries, so they really provide total satisfaction to all of your senses.

Okay, say that you really want a spontaneous weekend getaway in Napa and you plan to stay in a hotel. It’s still best to book in advance several days before your “surprise” trip to the Wine Country with your friend or loved one and go for a check in at the hotel of your choice. The earlier booking for the reservations, the better! It not only helps you get available suites; it can also let you enjoy unbelievable discounts!

If trying out the Napa cuisine is your priority, you will never run out of choices as there are endless lines of restaurants and grub hubs there. You may want to try haute cuisine even just once especially if you’ve got cash or wide credit limit to spare. You can try fine dining at the French Laundry or Morimoto. Then you can try the comparatively cheaper eats by trying out the mid-range restaurants, or by going to Oxbow Public Market or Oakville Grocery to buy artisanal treats and then have a picnic at one of the wineries you plan to visit.

But if pampering is something you’d love to do, you and your friend or loved one should go to Calistoga. The city in Napa County, known for its hot springs, is undoubtedly the best place for spas and wellness centers. Some of these centers have sports facilities such as tennis and golf — and won’t you want to play sports with the stunning views around you?

But if you want to take a spontaneous trip to Napa Valley to the higher level, you could take a hot air balloon ride! A hot air balloon is another fantastic way of exploring Napa Valley. It lets you see the Napa Valley from an entirely different perspective, something that you don’t get a from a hilltop winery. Enjoy uninterrupted views of the neat rows of lush vineyards, rolling hills, and deep valleys as you gently float in the sky. Don’t forget to bring your camera along!

There are a lot of hot air balloon operators in Napa Valley but Balloons Above the Valley (BATV) should be your first choice when you decide to include hot air balloon rides in your Napa Valley wine tours. If you want to have a hot air balloon ride in your “spontaneous” Napa Valley trips, it’s still best to book your reservation in advance in order to enjoy hassle-free hot air balloon rides as well as pre-flight breakfast, post-flight champagne brunch, and wine tours. Check out BATV’s lineup of tour packages, pricing, and reservation details: http://balloonrides.com/tour-options-pricing-reservations/.

Vacations in Napa Valley can be spontaneous — it only adds to the the excitement and fun in discovering the beauty and pleasures that the Wine Country has to offer!

Napa Tours You’ll Want to Experience Again

Visitors who have seen, experienced, and been enchanted by the Napa Valley may want to do Napa tours all over again. And you can’t blame them!

Napa has definitely gone a long way from being an obscure, second-rate bunch of vineyards to one of the world-class wine regions of the world. And what could be a better way to experience the beautiful Napa countryside than in a thrilling and mesmerizing way, immersing yourself in wine education, sampling its cuisine, and making new friends along the way? It’s by choosing Balloons Above the Valley (BATV), one of the oldest existing hot air balloon operators located in downtown Napa.

With its long existence in the hot air balloon industry, this alone makes BATV your best choice. Besides its famous hot air balloon rides, BATV also excels in customer relations, hospitality, and flying safety. Not to mention are our amazing hot air balloon and wine tours packages allow you to enjoy the best of what Napa has to offer — either from the ground or from the air!

Sunrise Balloon Flight & Brunch
The base package of all the other packages BATV offers. Wake up to the delicious pre-flight breakfast that consists of freshly baked goodies and Starbucks coffee. Afterward, the hot air balloon adventure begins! As you leave the ground and head for the sky, see Napa morph into a wide landscape painting! Enjoy 360-degree views of Napa and its famous vineyards, rolling hills, and valleys as they greet the warm rays of the morning sun. You may occasionally see fog or mist enveloping the mountains the fields, which adds unique drama to the landscape. After the one-hour flight, end this special day with a seasonal post-flight brunch with sparkling wine to toast with your fellow guests.

Sunrise Balloon Flight – Champagne Brunch – Wine Tour
This is like the Sunrise Balloon Flight & Brunch, but the difference between them is the added wine tours on the itinerary. Immediately after the hot air balloon flight (or the next day, depending on your preference), you and the other guests will be taken on a six-hour tour at four to six premium wineries plus a lovely buffet-style picnic lunch at one of the vineyards. Napa Valley Wine Country Tours will be your guide and companion who will take you to the wineries that will appeal to your taste.

San Francisco Balloon & Wine Tour Package
Napa Wine Country Tours will take you from San Francisco to the Wine Country where you will be able to discover the diverse selection of wines from Napa and Sonoma counties. The day ends with a lovely buffet-style picnic lunch at a vineyard. The next day will be your hot air balloon adventure plus champagne brunch. And those are not all! You will also have the option to do some shopping and sightseeing before you are sent to the Ferry Terminal (with free ferry tickets) which will take you back to San Francisco.

Enjoying wine tours, having a picnic lunch, and enjoying a hot air balloon ride over the beautiful vineyard-dominated scenery will definitely make your Napa tours truly unforgettable. You’ll even want to experience them all over again!

Napa Activities to Enjoy After Wine Tastings

There are many Napa activities to fill your time in the area, whether it’s a holiday or a short weekend getaway! You will never be bored when you visit the Wine Country.

Napa Valley is more than visiting vineyards and wineries. With its breathtaking landscape and bucolic charm, you can do many other things in Napa besides tasting wines.

Wine and art seem to flow seamlessly here in Napa. Did you know that can also see art at some of the wineries themselves? Some Napa wineries also double as art galleries which feature amazing artworks and valuable photographic works — even the buildings themselves are a work of art!

Artesa Winery features sculptures and other art installations by its resident artist Gordon Huether, who is famous the world over for his glass artworks. Mumm Napa features the works of the photography legend Ansel Adams, which were lent by the Adams family themselves. Cliff Lede Vineyards boasts a full gallery as well as a garden dotted with sculptures.

Of course, Napa also has standalone museums. If you want to see the best of the Bay Area art, go to di Rosa where you’ll also admire its meticulously landscaped grounds. The Napa Valley Museum blends art, nature, history, and culture of the region through its art and artifacts.

Even as you go out of the wineries and museums you can still see art all around you! Stroll around the Napa Art Walk in downtown Napa features street sculptures and art installations by several artists coming from different states.

Men cannot live by wine alone — even in the Wine Country. You really do need to eat in Napa along with drinking its famous wines. But doing so can put a big dent in your pocket, as the region is usually known for its high-end cuisine, artisanal eats, and Michelin-starred restaurants. But if you don’t mind the cost, you can dine at fine dining restaurants such as the Restaurant at Meadowood with its custom menus and wine pairings, enjoy the inventive Japanese cuisine at Morimoto, new French cuisine at La Toque, or the elegant Italian fare at Allegria.

But if you’re short on funds and need to fill your belly in Napa, don’t worry because you can still find comparatively affordable eats, if you’re smart and creative enough with your limited budget. You will be able to get the best value with still-amazing menus from the street side cafes such as Alexis Baking Company, cheap and no-frills Mexican fare at Ana’s Cantina, and Gott’s Roadside for fun communal dining and its delicious burger with toasted egg.

Having some adventure will also make your Napa activities extra special and memorable — as long as you don’t get too tipsy, or better yet, you have yet to visit the wineries. There are ways to enjoy Napa’s countryside charm in many ways: biking, hiking, swimming and doing water sports at Lake Berryessa or Napa River, or hiring a chopper to see the landscape from up the sky. Of course, a hot air balloon ride might be the culmination of your trip as it gives the view from sky in an experience like no other.

Balloons Above the Valley (BATV) will help you have that special experience. For over four decades it has satisfied guests with their safe, thrilling, and memorable sunrise hot air balloon rides over the gorgeous Napa landscape. You cannot get these uninterrupted views from riding in a helicopter, plus in a chopper it can be really noisy when you’re up there. BATV’s hot air balloons quietly and gently float in the air, and our experienced and licensed pilots will make sure that you’ll be in safe hands. No worries! All you have to do is just enjoy the bird’s eye views of Napa’s unbelievably peerless landscape — immaculate rows of lush green vineyards, rolling hills, majestic mountains that cradle Napa’s famous valleys. Apart from the views, bask in the warm rays of the sunrise and relish the peaceful feeling floating above the hubbub on the ground below. Take as many pictures as you like of the beautiful scenery and take them home as a special souvenir.

All good things must come to an end, though. But the end should be sweet too as you will be greeted with a heavenly champagne brunch that follows the hot air balloon flight.

Napa activities are so much more than just visiting vineyards and wineries as well as wine tastings. See and appreciate great art, have a taste of Napa’s world-class cuisine, enjoy a hot air balloon ride, and make new friends and lasting memories along the way.

Make a List of Fun Things to Do in Napa Valley

Because there are so many fun things to do in Napa Valley, you really have to plan ahead and list down the enjoyable activities that you’d really like to do while you’re in the area.

  1. Doing wine tours
    If you’re a wine lover, Napa Valley is your ultimate paradise! There are over 400 wineries spread across the region although the number of wineries in Napa Valley is smaller compared to other wine regions in the United States and the world. However, Napa’s wineries are all about the quality, not quantity, so it is a guarantee that you’ll have great quality wines and service, whether you want to go to the more established names or smaller, boutique wineries.

Most wineries in Napa require reservations, although a few of them do not need a prior appointment and otherwise accept walk-ins from visitors. Not all wineries conduct tastings, though; so if you want to include a tasting in your Napa wine tours, find out first if the winery of your choice offers this type of activity.

A lot of Napa wineries are fun to visit and discover, even if you don’t drink wine. Many of them feature elaborate architecture and landscape, such as Castelo di Amorosa and its authentically-built 13th-century Tuscan castle and Domaine Carneros’ gorgeous French villa. Some wineries are also a haven for art lovers, as they feature galleries and curated artwork and photographs such as the Artesa Winery, the Hess Collection Winery, and Mumm Napa. Other wineries offer different attractions such as the cable car ride at Sterling Vineyards.

  1. Go on a food trip
    Napa Valley is not only a world-class wine region but also a world-class location especially for discriminating foodies. Napa has over a hundred restaurants which have received more Michelin stars than other establishments outside the region. Yep, there’s no end to eating out in Napa, whether it’s fine-dining, burgers, or some grub at the open-air markets and groceries. The quality of food is incredible no matter the cost.

If you want to go to the “essential eats” in Napa Valley (that is, if you’ve got cash to spare), go to such restaurants as the French Laundry, Bistro Jeanty, The Restaurant at Meadowood, Morimoto, and Goose and Gander.

What do you do if you don’t have a lot to spend at high-end restaurants? Although Napa is somewhat notorious for being expensive, you can still find comparatively cheap but still great eats (especially if you’re a smart and resourceful tourist backpacking in Napa). For dining in Napa on a budget, the best place to visit is Oxbow Public Market or Oakville Grocery Store for affordable artisanal food items. Then go and have a picnic-style lunch at one of the wineries. In this way, you can also enjoy the fresh air and Napa’s countryside beauty around you.

  1. Seek adventure
    With Napa’s scenic landscape, it also has become an ideal place for outdoorsy people and adventure-seekers. Have you become tired of just walking around or driving the car? Why not bike around the vineyards? Take a hike at several of Napa’s most popular hiking trails with rugged treks that lead you to the top of the mountain, lakes, and other historical sites. Enjoy the luxury of a chauffeured limo as you visit wineries. Board the Napa Valley Wine Train for a taste of history and elegant cuisine (it is also a moving restaurant) as you travel to your wine tours.

It is possible to enjoy views of the Napa Valley from way up in the sky. You can do wine tours in a helicopter or a hot air balloon.

Yes, a hot air balloon — it is quite a popular activity in Napa. In fact, there are several hot air balloon operators in the area, including the famous Balloons Above the Valley (BATV)!

Since the 1970s BATV has served pleasurable flights to tourists; that’s over 40 years of experience. Its scenic hot air balloon rides allow the visitors to see the Napa Valley from a different perspective! Guests will enjoy 360-degree, unobstructed views of the beautiful Napa Valley and its neat and lush vineyards, and valleys cradled by the mountains and rolling hills.

Enjoy BATV’s pre-flight breakfast and post-flight champagne brunch, as well as conventional wine tours that will perfectly cater to your thirst for adventure and discovery in Napa Valley.

The fun things to do in Napa Valley seem to never end. It is not just about the wines — the region offers so many more enjoyable activities than one could ever imagine. So what are you waiting for? Get started making your plan for a fun, exciting, and memorable Napa trip now!

Enjoying a Successful Wine Tour Near San Francisco

A wine tour near San Francisco will make a great addition to your travels in and around the city. This is true especially if you want to escape the concrete jungle for a while, going to the Wine Country makes for an excellent and refreshing side trip!

If you want to make the most of your travels in the Wine Country (while you’re staying in San Francisco), you might want to include a hot air balloon ride in the morning! For this reason, you shouldn’t choose any hot air balloon ride operator — go for a world-class company like Balloons Above the Valley (BATV) for the best wine tours whenever you stay in San Francisco!

BATV has created a package specifically those who stay in the city and wish to travel to the Wine Country: the San Francisco Balloon & Wine Tour Package.” It fuses the two distinct pleasures — from the land and from the air — for two days for only $836.50 per two persons.

Day One:
You will be picked up in the morning by one of Napa Valley Wine Tour’s chauffeured limos in San Francisco, and you will be driven to the Wine Country. Enjoy an onboard breakfast with mimosa, and stop at a vista point to view the Golden Gate Bridge as you leave the city.

The wine tours include visits to four wineries: two in Napa and another two in Sonoma. You will also be led to the production at one of the wineries where you will discover the process of winemaking, and also have the chance to try Olive Press’ olive oil tasting as well!

You and the other guests will also love the picnic lunch at one of the wineries! Enjoy the freshly prepared meals as you enjoy the lovely countryside scenery that surrounds you.

Day Two:
The second day of this package is the one you’ve waited for — the sunrise hot air balloon adventure!

But before that, be sure to have a full and warm tummy! A buffet-style breakfast awaits you and the other guests. It consists of freshly baked pastries and Starbucks coffee. A brief orientation follows, and after that, you’ll be driven to the launch site.

After the balloons are being inflated, you’re now good to get aboard the wicker basket and ready to fly!

Enjoy unobstructed views of the Napa Valley — immaculate rows of lush vineyards and the famous valleys flanked by the majestic mountains and the rolling hills as they greet the warm rays of the morning sun.

A fresh and delicious seasonal brunch with champagne will follow after the one-hour flight. It also provides you the opportunity to mingle with new friends and discuss the wonderful hot air balloon experience!

If you choose to do the last-minute shopping or sightseeing after the champagne brunch, the Napa Valley Country Wine Tours will pick you and drop you off at either Oxbow Public Market or The Napa Valley Premium Outlets. Finally, you will be driven to the Ferry Terminal in Vallejo where you will take the ferry back to San Francisco with free ferry tickets. Or you will also have the option to be taken to the Ferry Terminal directly after the brunch.

Balloons Above the Valley has kept its reputation of being one of the best and the most trusted hot air balloon operator in Napa Valley for over 40 years. Choosing BATV over our competitors will give you a greater chance of enjoying a successful wine tour in San Francisco.

Choosing a Napa Wine Tour Package

Before, traveling to Napa Valley was only for the wealthy. But now it is made more accessible even to regular tourists, thanks to the idea of a Napa wine tour package. Several tourism and transportation agencies and related companies in Napa offer these amazing packages for everyone who wishes to experience the pleasures of vacationing in Napa.

Of course, you can bet that all tourism companies have their own tour guides which are recommended for every traveler most especially first time visitors to the area. Some tourism companies have their own fleet of transportation (such as cars, bicycles, limousines, choppers, and hot air balloons) or they partner with a transportation company who will take the guests to the wineries listed on the planned itinerary, or wineries or other tourist spots of their own choice.

Many packages also include a stay at a hotel, which can often include a free breakfast, lunch, or dinner, or all of them. A lot of these packages also offer free wine tastings, and you cannot call a Napa holiday a complete one without going to the wineries and tasting wines. If tasting wine is your main concern, you may choose a wine tour package whose main activities consist of wine tastings.

There are lots of benefits that Napa wine tour packages can bring. Most packages offer fixed rates which will help people to budget their own Napa tours. Another is the pre-arranged itinerary, which is beneficial especially to first-time tourists or to people who want to have a Napa holiday but wish to avoid the hassles of planning it by themselves. Let’s not forget the ease and convenience it offers. Just sit back, relax, and enjoy the beautiful Napa surroundings while your chauffeur drives you to the wineries or your hot air balloon pilot takes you up in the sky over the fields and valleys during sunrise.

Hot air balloon, you read? Yes! You can also choose a hot air balloon ride in Napa as there are a handful of hot air balloon operators in the region. One of the longest running, most popular and most trusted operators is Balloons Above the Valley (BATV), which has been in the business for over 40 years in providing breathtaking and memorable sunrise hot air balloon rides over the Napa Valley and wine tours to tourists.

BATV takes pleasure in delighting its guests whether they’re up in the sky or on the ground. Before the flight, you and the other guests enjoy a freshly-made breakfast at the Napa Valley Marriott lobby. After that, you will be driven to the launch site where the balloons are being inflated. Once the hot air balloons are up, it’s now your time to fly! As you float in the air, enjoy the uninterrupted bird’s-eye views of the Napa Valley — the famous lush vineyards and the valleys cradled by the hills, mountains, and the rolling hills. You may see occasional fog, too, depending on the season, but once the sun rises further, you can see the natural, countryside beauty of the Napa Valley more clearly. Take pictures and videos of your BATV hot air balloon experience and bring them home as timeless souvenirs.

A champagne brunch follows the one-hour hot air balloon flight. There, you will have the opportunity to mingle with the guests and celebrate the successful flight as you enjoy the buffet-style brunch and sparkling wine.

You can opt for wine tours with BATV (in addition to the hot air balloon flights) depending on the package. Visit wineries, discover the process of winemaking, and have the chance to literally taste and enjoy their wines and varietals. There is a BATV wine tour package which takes you to wineries not only in Napa but also in Sonoma as well. If you live or are staying in San Francisco and wish to go to the Wine Country, BATV and Napa Valley Wine Tours will be glad to take you there all the way from the city by a luxurious limousine transportation.

Thanks to the Napa wine tour packages by companies such as Balloons Above the Valley, they help Napa by bringing in more tourists not just from the United States, but also from many other parts of the world. No wonder, the Napa Valley has morphed from being a destination just for wine lovers to one of the most popular tourist spots for other people as well, even for non-wine lovers.

Activities to Try in Napa Valley, California

There are many activities to try in the wine region of Napa Valley, California. It is about a 90-minute drive away from the city of San Francisco.

Napa Valley is a wealth of many things — breathtaking landscape, food, activities and festivals, and wine grapes and wines, of course.

But let’s say you’re done with the wine tasting at the most famous wineries and have dined at the popular restaurants, or danced the night away in downtown Napa clubs. So what else would you like to do? A lot more, we say! Here are a few other things that we think are unique when you’re in Napa:

1. Visit the hidden gems in Napa
When we say “hidden gems,” we mean wineries that are usually off-the-radar to most visitors. You could be at an advantage there if you’re set to discover a lot more wineries, as not too many tourists know the immediate whereabouts of these little-known wineries, or what they have to offer. These wineries can be a lot of things: they may be relatively unknown, their location is obscure, or they are really small wineries (most wineries in Napa are family-owned, by the way). These “hidden gems” will provide you less stuffy and more intimate wine tours that you may not have experienced with the more established ones.

Many of these small-time wineries provide stunning and unique architecture. Their buildings and decorative pieces can be called a work of art themselves, such as in the case of Artesa Vineyards, The Hess Collection, and Winery and Cliff Lede Vineyards. While other wineries offer breathtaking views of the vineyards. But the main draws to these wineries are, of course, the wines themselves and the enthusiastic, warm staff. Needless to say, those are the reasons why well-informed tourists keep coming back to these smaller wineries.

2. Visit fields and farms other than vineyards
It’s true that being surrounded by Napa’s mile-long vineyards and discovering varietals provide a great experience. But sometimes, you wonder if Napa Valley is just all about grapevines. And the answer is definitely no! Napa is a rural and natural wonder — its Mediterranean-type climate and fertile soils provide lots of other plants and crops to grow, not just wine grapes.

Want to be awakened by the fragrance of lavender, and also to be surrounded by fields of lovely lavender blooms? You don’t need to go too far because it’s right here at the heart of the Napa! Harms Vineyards and Lavender Fields has a beautiful farm where they grow only organic lavenders, from where they make essential oils, bath salts, mists, potpourris, and a lot more. It also sells lavender bouquets. You may visit Harms Vineyards, maybe have a picnic there, and feel relaxed by just breathing in the aroma of the lavender blooms wafting through the air. And oh, you may pick some grapes too!

Bringing the kids along? Napa Valley is for the little ones too, although it doesn’t seem like it! Sure, children can’t drink wine or visit most wineries, but you can take them to the farm! If you’re planning a summer visit with the kids, bring them to Connelly Farms in downtown Napa. There, kids will have opportunities to unplug and get in touch with nature. They will learn farming and gardening (kids love to get their hands dirty) hanging out with farm animals and rearing them, and more! The ranch allows the kids to learn about nature at their own pace, and also to make new friends along the way!

You may also try visiting Napa Valley in the winter, which is the off-season in the region. Be amazed by the vast brilliant yellow fields of wild mustard blooms that overwhelm the dormant vineyards.

3. Explore Napa up from the sky
You may have biked around the fields, hired a chauffeured limo bus to take you to the wineries, or hiked all the way to the summit of Mount St. Helena and enjoyed the panoramic views of the vineyards.

But if you’ve never heard of hovering above the Napa fields, you dismiss it as too far-off. But it is real — you can explore this beautiful region from up in the sky!

One of the ways to do it is by hiring a chopper, but it could be noisy and besides you will not be able to enjoy 360-degree views of the fields and valleys. The better way to get the bird’s eye view is by experiencing the pleasure of a hot air balloon ride. There isn’t a better way than by choosing to fly with Balloons Above the Valley (BATV)!

Hot air balloon rides give tourists a peerless experience. They may have seen the expanse and beauty of Napa, but a hot air balloon ride allows them to see the whole landscape as a work of art — like a huge landscape painting! BATV makes it happen so you and the other guests can enjoy the full expansive views of Napa and its lush vineyards, famous valleys, majestic mountains, and rolling hills.

If you fear about safety, you might as well forget it as soon as you are inside the basket! That fear will turn into thrill and awe as you get to enjoy the stunning views of the Napa landscape. Our experienced and licensed pilots are also one of BATV’s draws — they are not only professional but are also personable, friendly, full of info and stories to tell, and have a passion for both flying and meeting people. You will be in safe hands as our pilots expertly maneuver the floating balloon. After the flight, you will be greeted with a champagne brunch where you will celebrate the successful flight with your new friends! How cool is that?

These are only a few of the different activities to try Napa Valley, California. And if you’re planning a Napa holiday right now, don’t forget to include a BATV hot air balloon ride to make it even more unique and unforgettable.

Wine Tours California: Arrive in Style

The lovely state of California offers a variety of climates and landscapes. It has famous beaches on the eastern coast, hot deserts in the southwest, snow-capped mountains and snowy trails in the northern and southern regions (during the winter), and a Mediterranean climate and scenery in the north. It’s like a world away after another in just one state!

So it’s no question that California is a popular tourist destination. One of the things you wouldn’t want to miss is the wine tours in California, to experience its world-class homegrown wines and view the idyllic landscape.

And while you’re at it, you just don’t want to arrive in the Wine Country just by driving your own car or by taking a public transportation. If you have a budget to spare, you may want to arrive there in style, comfort, and luxury, even for just a day. And maybe take a hot air balloon ride for a more memorable journey.

Balloons Above the Valley (BATV) is always ready to give you the memorable “arrive” in your California holiday. Two of our tour packages, the “Balloon & Wine Tour Package” and the “San Francisco Balloon & Wine Tour Package,” will help you get to the Wine Country in style.

Your tour company, Napa Valley Wine Country Tours, has a fleet of limousines and limo buses which will take you to and around the wineries. Experienced and knowledgeable chauffeurs will chat about other interesting and delightful sites of interest as you go along. In the “San Francisco Balloon & Wine Tour Package,” we will pick you up from downtown San Francisco and take you all the way to the Wine Country. While on the course of the journey, you and the other guests will also enjoy an onboard breakfast inside the limousine. How cool is that?

It’s not just the fun and luxurious wine tours that you’re going to enjoy. Of course, the most-awaited part of the tour is the hot air balloon ride! BATV provides sunrise hot air balloon rides for its guests.

Although a hot air balloon ride can be taken early or late in the day, the morning is thought to be the most glorious time of the day to have a hot air balloon journey. Once the balloon is inflated, you are comfortably transferred into the wicker basket. The pilot is ready and the balloon rises above the ground and departs for the sky.

Since the hot air balloon is moved by the direction of the wind, the hot air balloon just “floats” in the air, and the passengers won’t feel any winds during the course of the flight. The result is absolute stillness and quietness.

Enjoy the uninterrupted views of the Napa Valley expanse: neat rows of vineyards, deep valleys, lush rolling hills, the occasional clouds and fog that envelop the peak of the hills. You will never want to forget to take beautiful photos and videos of the stunning scenery. Afterward, take these home as a wonderful souvenir and reminder of that wonderful flight above one of the most famous wine regions in the world.

When you’re up in the sky, the bird’s-eye views of the Napa Valley are absolutely spectacular and breathtaking. This is an experience like no other, and you only wish you would be able to enjoy wine tours in California in the same “stylish” way again very soon!

Finding Napa Valley Things to Do Is Easy

Finding lots of Napa Valley things to do is easy. But because of the wealth of sights, tastes and experiences that await every tourist, choosing which ones they should do first becomes a little bit difficult.

But one thing that shouldn’t be left out of your Napa Valley travel list is, of course, wine tours. There are hundreds of wineries in Napa, most of them family-owned, so each of them offers a different and unique experience to every guest. If you’re on a short getaway to Napa or having a week-long holiday there, it is best to visit a winery or two a day. To make the most out of your day trip, it is best to visit a winery which is the closest to where you are staying. Or if distance is not much of a factor, you may consider other things. Do you like to do wine cave tours? Or experience food and wine pairings? Or ride the Napa Valley Wine Train or enjoy a cable car ride at the Sterling Vineyards? Or are wineries with amazing art galleries and architecture more your thing? You may consider these factors before actually visiting these wineries.

Of course, no visit to Napa Valley is complete without food! Go for a classic fine-dining at the French Laundry or grab a lunch at the Oakville Grocery and go for a picnic at one of the wineries, in an idyllic setting, or sample artisanal treats at the Oxbow Public Market. The Napa Valley caters to every foodie.

Not surprisingly, there is a wealth of outdoor activities in Napa Valley on account of its breathtaking, scenic natural beauty. Going out all day and visiting the vineyards is a good past time, but there are also other things to do such as cycling, hiking, swimming (at the lake Berryessa and the Napa River), golfing, and riding a hot air balloon.

Yes, a hot air balloon! Not everyone can experience this unique activity as it is kind of pricey. But it is worth the cost, as you will be able to see Napa Valley in a way like nothing before. Enjoy 360-degree views of the expansive and neat rows of grapevines, deep valleys, verdant rolling hills, and estates that seem like toy houses when viewed from above. The beauty of Napa Valley from a different perspective is really something that you cannot forget. Of course, you won’t finish the journey without taking beautiful photos and videos of the Napa Valley from your smartphone, DSLR, or Go-Pro. Even just a point-and-shoot camera will suffice and you can still manage to take breathtaking photos!

Seeking a hot air balloon flight adventure (as well as a piece of tranquility) is pretty easy to find with Balloons Above the Valley (BATV). Our decades of experience, competent pilots, and customer staff and of course our flawless hot air balloon flights surely put us above the competition. Our pilots are highly experienced, FAA-licensed, and have demonstrated their love for flying and meeting different folks throughout their piloting experience. So you’ll know you’ll be in safe hands with our pilots and you will enjoy your light (and informative) with our masters of the skies as they skillfully maneuver the hot air balloons.

But first, a lovely breakfast greets you and gets you prepared for the flight. A post-flight champagne brunch is served for you and the other guests to celebrate the successful and wonderful flight.

With Napa’s bountiful offering of wonderful sights, sounds, tastes, and activities, finding Napa Valley things to do isn’t much difficult at all.