Favorite Wine-cation Destinations

Romantic spots ripe for the picking

Consider blending winery tours with a vacation for your next trip, whether for a short getaway or a week-long visit.

A wine-cation is the dream vacation for someone who appreciates wine – or someone new to wine who wants to learn more about it. There are a variety of wine-growing regions in the US, and November and December are great times to visit to enjoy the holiday décor and skip the crowds that pack the wineries during grape harvesting season in September and October.

These destinations offer unique opportunities to explore history, culture, gastronomy and nature, not to mention winemaking.

Here are our favorite spots that are ripe for the picking.

Favorite Wine-cation Destinations

Long Island, New York

Where to Stay: The Baker House

The countryside in the Hamptons is the ideal grape growing locale, and The Baker House features 17th-century style architecture and most rooms include whirlpool tubs and wood-burning fireplaces. Don’t miss the L’Occitane hair and body products as guest essentials.

Where to Drink: Wolffer Estate Vineyard

Opt for this sustainable vineyard that is famous for its Chardonnays and Merlots. The 12,000-square-foot winery has an Italian vibe, and offers cheese and charcuterie plates to accompany the wines.

Favorite Wine-cation Destinations

St. Helena, California

Where to Stay: Wine Country Inn

Surrounded by vineyards and secluded up a country lane, this inn began as Napa Valley’s first B&B and has evolved into a lovely boutique hotel filled with antiques and charm. The location is ideal for a visit to the region, with 50 wineries within a five-mile drive, and nearby is the Restaurant at Meadowood, a coveted three star-Michelin restaurant.

Where to Drink: Pride Mountain Vineyards

If you’re a fan of big red wines made with the ripest fruit, then go no farther than Pride Mountain Vineyards, on Spring Mountain. Perched at the north end of Napa Valley, and straddling both Napa and Sonoma counties, this off-the-beaten-track winery offers majestic views of the region and unforgettable wines. There’s a picnic area for lunch, and the tour includes samples straight from the barrels.

Favorite Wine-cation Destinations

Temecula, California

Where to Stay: Ponte Vineyard Inn

Even though Temecula is just an hour’s drive from Los Angeles, you won’t want to drive back after sampling all that wine. Stay at the four-star Ponte Vineyard Inn and wake up to a morning walk in the vineyard. Horseback riding, spa services, hot air balloon rides and golf are just a few of the offerings at this luxurious hotel.

Where to Drink: Ponte Family Estate

Located in the heart of Temecula Wine Country, an hour southeast of Los Angeles, Ponte Family Estate is a way to spend a day in the country with its spacious, rustic-style tasting room, al fresco dining and more. You can take a tour to learn more about the winemaking process as well as dine amongst the vines at the Restaurant at Ponte while you sample handcrafted wines.

Favorite Wine-cation Destinations

Charlottesville, Virginia

Where to Stay: Boar's Head Inn

This hotel is a full-scale resort with Southern charm and cozy guest rooms. Each room has a balcony or patio and the facilities include three swimming pools, a spa, golf, tennis courts, and a restaurant offering local sustainably sourced foods.

Where to Drink: The Monticello Wine Trail

You’ll find 30 wineries within a 30-mile radius in Charlottesville. Start on this trail and see how far you can go in a day. The trail was inspired by Thomas Jefferson's vision of winemaking and is considered the birthplace of American wine.

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