It’s the best time of the year in Napa Valley: harvest season!
Also known as crush season, between the months of August-October, California wine country bustles as workers rush to pick grapes at their peak ripeness. Between the ideal warm weather, stunning changing scenery, and al fresco dinners, early fall is the perfect time to visit Napa.
While Napa Valley has recently had to make changes in accordance with state and local ordinances, as an area that’s long relied on its resourcefulness, local businesses were able to quickly pivot and welcome visitors back safely.
What to Expect
Visiting your favorite Napa Valley winery or restaurant—or discovering a new one—looks slightly different right now. However, with a little information and advance planning, you can still raise your glass to all that Napa has to offer during its spectacular harvest season.
Wineries are currently hosting outdoor tastings only, and all wine tastings at every winery across Napa Valley are by appointment only so be sure to make a reservation. Some wineries may require you to fill out a waiver upon arriving, and wine educators may not spend as much time with you at your table. Many wineries are limiting group sizes to a maximum of four to six people, and group tours or food pairings may be limited or unavailable at this time.
Restaurants have moved entirely to outdoor seating with limited capacity and strongly recommend making reservations ahead of time. You must wear a face covering anytime you’re not seated at your table. Another important thing to note is that not all restaurants are open, and some are still limiting service to takeout, so we recommend inquiring in advance.
Retail stores continue to welcome guests while all indoor services such as bars, spas, and gyms remain closed. However, it is still important to confirm directly since many individual businesses are currently reopening and operating on their own schedules. You can find a full list of open businesses in Napa Valley here.
Other Local Activities
Beyond all the wining and dining, there’s so much for you to enjoy in Napa Valley!
Go For a Drive
Pack a cooler and hop in your car for a mini road trip along one of Napa’s many scenic drives, which take you directly past some of the region’s best hikes and hidden gem wineries. Whether you wind down Highway 128 with the fall colors and sweeping lake views as your backdrop, meander from Calistoga to Spring Mountain and stop at boutique wineries along the way, or seek out adventure on the road from the Silverado Trail to Howell Mountain, anywhere you drive in Napa Valley this time of year makes for some happy cruising.
Take a Hike
From rugged mountain ranges to redwood-covered creeks and beautiful lakes all bursting with fall foliage and wildlife, Napa offers one-of-a-kind hikes for all skill levels. View the Napa Outdoors Map to explore the various Napa Valley hiking trails.
Browse the Farmers Market
Beyond its coveted grapes, Napa Valley also yields a year-round harvest of seasonal produce at the world-class Napa Farmers Market. Every Tuesday and Saturday, you’ll find some of the finest farm-to-table fruits and vegetables while also supporting over 60 regional farms.
Book a stay at RiverPointe Resort, ideally situated at the heart of wine country and the perfect place to enjoy harvest season!