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Alternatives to Napa for your California Trip

Image by David Mark from Pixabay

Most people have heard of the Napa Valley in central California, roughly just to the North East of San Francisco. The area covers 2,000 sq km and produces some of the most highly rated wines in the world. If you watch the comedy film "Wine Country", currently available on Netflix, as well as a bit of entertainment (you will never be able to look at paella in the same way), it will also give you a feel for the region and how seriously they take their wine.

However, further South is the relatively recently re-established wine region of Temecula, which is about half the size and has only one tenth the number of wineries. The thing to consider is, amazing as Napa Valley could be; if you are visiting with a family and not everyone is that into wine, and/or just not planning on going North of LA, and/or you don't want visiting vineyards to dominate your California vacation; then this could be the place for you.

I have put some of the Temecula tourism and wine links here and here. However, one of the main reasons is Geography. By basing yourself near Temecula, South of Orange County, but North of San Diego, perhaps on/near the coast, you can be in the middle of a lot of different attractions. To list just a few, within about 30 minutes drive you can be in:-

Temecula and the wineries, Oceanside or Carlsbad with the Pier (in the former), Legoland (in the latter) and of course all of the beaches and So Cal surf-lifestyle.

Within about 60 mins drive North you can be in Orange County, Anaheim including Disneyland. Driving South brings you to San Diego and La Jolla. Driving East you can be up in the Palomar Mountain State Park.

Within 90 mins - 2 hours drive you can be up to LA, across to Palm Springs or over to Joshua Tree National Park or Anza-Borrego State Park.

Not to mention there is a pretty good (and scenic) Amtrak rail service which runs up and down the nearby coast between Los Angeles and San Diego. I have mentioned this in detail in earlier posts, but here are a couple of quick links here and here.

So I will just plant the idea with you and let you use the links to find out more, if you are interested. However, perhaps this could be the basis for a vacation/holiday based on a fraction of something for everybody, rather than being wholly grape based.

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