Visiting wine country is the ultimate travel experience in California, but if you’re traveling with kids, you might wonder how to make the most of a 21-and-over activity. While many wineries are not family-friendly, there are plenty of places that cater to kids with family-friendly activities to create a fun travel experience for the whole family.
Castello di Amorosa, Napa Valley
Photo by Jenna Francisco
Castello di Amorosa is an unforgettable winery near Calistoga in Napa Valley. Only authentic materials from Europe were used to build this enormous castle. For adventurous kids who want to explore the tunnels and dark rooms of an authentic castle, this is the perfect place to visit. Tours, both guided and self-guided, are offered frequently throughout the day and include grape juice for the kids while adults taste wine.
Oak Farm Vineyards, Lodi
Photo by Jenna Francisco
Oak Farm Vineyards is a small winery on a beautiful ten-acre property. The family-run winery produces whites and reds from estate fruit, such as their Verdelho and Barbera. There is a small pond with geese where kids can roam and wine club members can even spend time fishing. The enormous heritage oak tree in the center of the property is not to be missed.
Harney Lane Winery, Lodi
Photo by Randy Caparoso and used with permission by Lodi Winegrape Commission
One of Lodi’s most popular wineries is Harney Lane, a winery that prides itself on family tradition and excellence. Their award-winning wines include the Lizzy James Zinfandel and Albarino. Families are welcome to stop in for tastings, and the tables located in the gardens out front make the perfect place to enjoy some wine and cheese. Kids are welcome as long as they’re supervised since the winery is located off of a busy road. They will enjoy meeting Ranger, the golden retriever who is always supervising the vineyards.
Navarro Vineyards, Mendocino
Photo by Tom Hilton CC BY
Navarro Vineyards is a family farm and small winery that makes both wine and non-alcoholic grape juice. The winery’s scenic grounds include grazing sheep and plenty of space to picnic. Tastings are complimentary, and local cheeses and other snacks are sold inside.
Truett Hurst, Sonoma County
Photo by Jinx McCombs CC BY
Truett Hurst winery in California’s famous Dry Creek Valley has five acres of gardens, ducks, sheep and a river stocked with salmon. Comfortable seating on the riverbank creates a relaxing atmosphere for families to enjoy the afternoon. The tasting room is made of eco-friendly materials, so older kids can learn about green building practices while visiting.