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St. Helena is a lively and charming town. Part of that is due to her geography and to conscious care. It exudes casual elegance and grace. Here you’ll find the quaint and luxurious bed and breakfasts you associate with wine country.

In the days of stagecoaches and bumpy roads, the Napa Valley was fairly remote, and it was a rough go if you crossed over the hills. When the trains came through, St. Helena was easier to get to, but it was still a sleepy little town. Then world-class wine came onto the scene.

Keeping St. Helena’s personality, and preserving the land around it, has been carried on with diligence. In the 1960s, Napa County adopted one of the first major agricultural land protection policies in the United States. This has set the tone for preservation.

Today, a fierce love of the land and a strong sense of togetherness are tangible. You see it in historic downtown St. Helena where local family businesses thrive. You see it in the vineyards where 95% are family owned.  Activities such as the Easter egg hunt, Harvest Festival pet parade, free summer concerts and the annual wine auction hosted by the Napa Valley Vintners Association create a vital community.

Driving through St. Helena gives you the impression that this is a bustling little town that could be anywhere in America. But, when you walk down the streets past the boutiques and galleries, it’s a different story.  If you are looking for wine country’s high-end artsy side, you’ll find it in St. Helena.

If the area piques your interest, dip into River House Books.  It’s a comfortable, independent bookstore with plenty of books that cover local legends and lore, wine, cooking, and tales of the land.  While you’re in the Napa Valley, enjoy all that is St. Helena!

Visit St. Helena & Napa Valley

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- Written by Allie Lynch , featured travel writer for Authentic Wine Country