Napa Valley may offer up visions of wine tastings and fancy dinners, but there are plenty of family activities that cater to families with children. If you’re planning on a getaway this summer with the kids, don’t cross Napa Valley off your list. You’ll find that there’s much to offer in this spectacular region of Northern California.
Centrally Located Hotels
Traveling with kids has its complications, which is why it’s best to choose a hotel that is within walking distance to restaurants and marketplaces. Napa Valley Hotel and Suites is conveniently located in downtown Napa and is within walking distance to many attractions, such as the Copia Center, Oxbow Market and Napa Riverwalk. With opportunities for family fun and access to food and everyday supplies, you’ll find this area to be welcoming for families.
Since it’s rare for people to come to Wine Country without visiting a winery, you’ll be pleased to know that there are a handful of wineries that welcome children. For instance, Castello di Amorosa charges a reduced fee for kids and takes them on a tour of the castle, along with the dungeon. Juice is provided instead of wine – for the kids at least! Call ahead and make sure that the wineries of your choice will accommodate youngsters.
Old Faithful Geyser
The Old Faithful Geyser, or California’s Old Geyser, is located in Calistoga and plenty of fun for the kids. It is one of the few geysers that erupts regularly, about every 30 minutes or so. When it erupts, it throws up to 60 feet of hot water into the air. Kids also enjoy the llamas and Tennessee Fainting Goats that can be seen at the park. There is an admission fee, but you can make a day at the park if you plan a picnic lunch and hiking or biking adventure.
Another staple in Calistoga, a walk through Petrified Forest is sure to impress the little ones. Walking through the forest takes about 30 minutes, and the kids will awe at the trees that are about 8 feet in diameter and 65 feet long. The sight is unique because the trees are dull and gray as opposed to the brightly colored trees we usually swoon over. Admission is low cost. Look for coupons or free days that are offered from time to time.
Safari West offers tours where the kids can see over 400 animals in their natural habitat. It’s not a zoo, but instead a wildlife preserve that offers safari adventures and bed-and-breakfast services. The safaris are open to the public and last about two hours, so the kids will definitely get a fun-filled tour with frequent stops. They can even feed some of the animals!