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Visit the Napa and Sonoma Valleys

Two of the Most Renowned Wine Appellations are within Easy Reach

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Visitors to Sausalito are often surprised to find out just how close they are to the homes of some of their favorite wineries in the Napa and Sonoma Valleys. Within a short drive north, you can be sipping your favorite vintage with views of the vineyards and mountains in some of the most sought after real estate in the wine world.

Northern California is known throughout the world for its winemaking and grape growing regions, none of which are better regarded or known than the Napa and Sonoma appellations. With more than one thousand wineries to choose from within this relatively small geographic area, you should have little trouble finding something to fit your palate and tastes.

The Napa Valley

With nearly 500 bonded wineries in operation in the Napa Valley, there are more choices and different wines available than one visit can conceivable begin to cover. Labels such as Artesa, Darioush, Quintessa and others have begun to join the ranks of the legendary standbys that have been favorites for decades like Mondavi, Silver Oak Cellars, and Grgich Hills. Visitors can visit on their own, arrange private or group tours through the many livery companies in the valley, or take a ride on the famous Wine Train for their tasting experience.

A visit to the Napa Valley from Sausalito would not be complete without a stop at one of the now legendary restaurants in the area. Michelin rated restaurants such as the French Laundry and Redds continue to be popular along with a crop of newer more casual restaurants and even gourmet food trucks that rove the wineries and events.

The Sonoma Valley

Located next door to the Napa Valley is the Sonoma Valley with its share of wineries, restaurants, and wine country lifestyle as well. Bringing a slightly more bohemian and relaxed atmosphere to wine tasting, the Sonoma wineries have created quite a name for themselves in the personal and personality-driven approach to wine tours and tastings. Visit a winery such as La Crema, Kendall-Jackson, or Rodney Strong and have a personal connection and experience that you won’t soon forget. Although slightly more spread out than their Napa neighbors, Sonoma’s wineries also bring a unique and more rustic feeling to the experience.

While you are in Sonoma, take a break at the downtown Plaza area near the historic Mission. Shops, restaurants, and more are clustered around one of California’s oldest town squares and create an easy-access way to see and do everything downtown and relax after your wine touring.

Getting There from Sausalito

Getting to wine country in either of the valleys is a simple task from Sausalito. Just a short drive north on highway 101 will take you to separate directions for each valley. The drive itself can be as little as 30 minutes, and depending on your scheduling and planning, you can easily have a day of wine tasting and be back at your bayside accommodations in Sausalito by nightfall. Many of the livery and transportation/touring companies in both the Napa and Sonoma Valleys will happily agree to pick you up in Sausalito and ferry you home again afterwards as well.

Napa Valley Information:

Napa Valley Destination Council
1001 Second St. #330
Napa, CA 94559
(707)260-0112
www.legendarynapavalley.com

Napa Valley Vintners Association
1475 Library Lane
St. Helena, CA 94574
(707)963-3388
www.napavintners.com

Sonoma Valley Information:

Sonoma County Vintners
3637 Westwind Blvd.
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
(707)522-5840
www.sonomawine.com/

Sonoma County Tourism Bureau
3637 Westwind Blvd.
Santa Rosa, CA 94503
(707)522-5800
www.sonomacounty.com/

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Photos copyright by Jay Graham Photographer