Tag: wine country

Putting Your “Wine Country” Trip Back on the Front Burner

Putting Your “Wine Country” Trip Back on the Front Burner

(Updated November 5, 2017, 12:00 p.m. PST)

California’s “Wine Country” (Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino counties) near San Francisco has long been a “hot” tourist destination, especially at this time of year.

(FlippinYank Flickr Photo)

But last month it was “too hot to handle” for both visitors and locals as fires have burned across the region destroying wineries, vineyards, homes, and business with no end to the conflagrations in sight.

That’s why I had urged those who were planning a trip to the area to put their plans “on the back burner.” But the situation has now changed, and Travel+Leisure is recommending that its readers not cancel trips to the region.

As of October 31st all fires burning in Northern California “Wine Country” were reported as being contained. Air quality is now ” considered satisfactory, and air pollution poses little or no risk.” Cooler, more seasonable high temperatures in the low 60s, with a mix of sun, rain, and showers are forecast during the coming week. All roads that were closed in Sonoma and Napa Counties during the fires have no re-opened.

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Off-Season in Sonoma Valley Wine Country

Off-Season in Sonoma Valley Wine Country

From late spring through early fall when the weather is likely to be warm and sunny sounds like the ideal time to visit “Wine Country” north of San Francisco.

Weather-wise, it is, and that’s why during that time of year you’ll find lodgings fully-booked, restaurant reservations hard to come by, roads clogged with cars, and winery tasting rooms chock-a-block with those seeking to sample the wares.

The grape harvest, beginning from sometime in August and extending through sometime in October, is a particularly busy time, not just for grape growers and wineries, but for the area’s tourist industry as a whole

(Chip Harlan Flick Photo)
(Chip Harlan Flick Photo)

But like leaves on trees, tourism begins to fall by November, “locals” begin reclaiming their must-loved wine region for themselves, and savvy travelers take advantage of the quiet time in wine country.

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