Downtown Napa for wine lovers

Downtown Napa
Cadet Beer & Wine Bar

Napa Valley is one of the most-visited destinations for wine-loving travellers, and it’s no surprise why. Home to 16 AVAs, 18,000+ hectares of vineyards, and over 450 wineries within a 30-mile radius, the region is both a bountiful and beautiful choice for curious wine lovers worldwide.

However, those familiar with wine region travel are no strangers to the downsides of this style of visit. Extensive time in the car, pre-scheduled appointments, and the need for a designated driver can create massive headaches while trying to enjoy the best that wine travel has to offer. Thankfully, there is a solution.

Situated at the base of the region’s prestigious valley, Downtown Napa is a safe haven for wine lovers looking for a food-and-booze soaked weekend, no car or pre-scheduled appointments required. Home to a slew of tasting rooms, world-class restaurants and delightful places to drink, this small-yet-fierce urban centre is ideal for wine-loving travellers looking for an easy, laid-back getaway. Check out our perfect three-day itinerary for taking in all that this delightful city centre has to offer, no car required.

Thanks to the region’s spectacular year-round weather, planning a visit to Napa promises a great time during any month of the year. Peak seasons take place from March to May, as well as August to October (harvest time) – the latter of which is arguably the most beautiful time of year.

Although Napa is best known for its full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon, there’s so much more to discover. In addition to flavour-packed Chardonnay, Merlot-based blends, and powerful Syrah, a slew of other wine grapes are cultivated in this diverse growing area. With regards to food, the region doesn’t necessarily boast a signature dish – however, the taco trucks on Soscol Avenue offer some of the area’s most authentic cuisine.

Stacking the days with tasting room appointments can quickly run up a high tab, as wine tasting flights are generally always the pricier option. Instead, opt for a simple glass or bottle option at places where you may only be interested in one or two wines. Save the wine flights for tasting rooms that truly pique your curiosity – that’s to say, have a larger number of wines that spark your interest.

My perfect weekend in Downtown Napa


A Riverview Deluxe King room at River Terrace Inn. Credit: River Terrace Inn


Arrive in Downtown Napa and check in at the River Terrace Inn. Located within walking distance of all of the area’s best tasting rooms and restaurants, this tranquil accommodation offers 114 rooms of a variety of types and with various amenities. Spring for one of the hotel’s breathtaking suites, equipped with private balcony and in-room fireplace (operated by remote control, no management required). The hotel also features a restaurant, meeting area and gym, kitted out with a Peloton bike and two Peloton treadmills.


Stroll over to the nearby Oxbow Public Market, home to a variety of places to eat, drink, and enjoy the local scenery. Enjoy fresh oysters from Hog Island Oyster Co or authentic Mexican street food at C Casa Taqueria. Post-market stroll, take a beer break across the street at Trade Brewing (we recommend the Kolsch) or pop over to Walt Wines, regarded for their tasty Pinot Noir and Chardonnay offerings, for your first tasting room experience.

For outdoor games, live music and al fresco fun, head to the newly-opened Napa Yard. Boasting an on-site distillery, numerous bars and tasty pub grub, this distillery-beer garden hybrid offers a variety of ways to enjoy the weather. Be sure to check the space’s website for a list of upcoming events.

For dinner, head back to the River Terrace Inn and enjoy a meal al fresco at the hotel’s on-site restaurant, ALBA. Start with the Daily Harvest Tartine and Cornbread, followed by the Grilled Asparagus Salad. Entrée highlights include Ricotta Gnocchi, Half-Roasted Chicken, and the signature…

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Downtown Napa for wine lovers  
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