Harvest time is one of the busiest seasons in Napa Valley. This is true for just about everything: wineries, restaurants, hotels and shopping. The excitement of harvest season brings in a lot of tourism, which means there is plenty to do in the community and even more people to meet. Let’s take a look at why harvest season is a great time to visit Wine Country!
When is Harvest Season?
The exact dates of harvest season vary with the weather conditions, but it generally starts between the end of July and end of August and lasts about 8 weeks. Even though official harvest season starts at different dates, it typically lasts 2 months because it takes this long for all the grapes to ripen. The Cork Board blog announced that the wine grape harvest for this year started July 30. Sparkling wine producer Mumm Napa is typically the first one to bring in fruit each year, and they’ve begun their harvesting.
Pros and Cons of Visiting Napa During Harvest Time
There are clear advantages to visiting Napa Valley during harvest season. First, the weather is a bit cooler, with highs in the mid-80s and lows in the mid-50s. There is little chance of rain, which means you should be able to enjoy warm temperatures and abundant sunshine without having rain affect your travels. Usually, the most that happens weatherwise is a bit of morning fog, especially near San Francisco Bay.
Another advantage is that you get to visit Wine Country during one of the most important times of the year. You may get to see some of the harvesting when taking part in a crush or harvest event at one of the local wineries. Plus, the summer is winding down, so you can expect a steady crowd of people and events to keep you and the family busy.
The biggest drawback to visiting at this time is that it is crowded. If you enjoy a quieter, more intimate travel experience, you may want to wait until after harvest season is complete. Also, wineries tend to be very busy at this time, so you may not get the one-on-one attention you’d prefer on a tour. Finally, most of the harvesting takes place in the near dawn hours and is finished before breakfast, so you may not see as much harvesting as you had hoped.
There is no right or wrong time to visit Napa Valley. For some, harvest time is full of surprises and excitement. If you can relate, plan your trip today and take advantage of Grape Crush Season Packages at great rates!