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The Napa Valley, there’s so much to do!  Astonishing beauty, the feel of California history, and discovering the Napa vineyards and wineries.  Just to throw a monkey wrench in the works, we’ll give you our top seven things to do while you’re exploring the Napa Valley Vineyards other than winetasting.  Here are surprises to add to your wine country radar:

1)    Enjoy Live Performances:  Fine entertainment in Napa?  You bet.  Napa is proud, and rightly so, of its Napa Valley Opera House and the Uptown Theater.  Being in wine country attracts fine talent and terrific productions.  Both are in downtown Napa.   Dining out in Yountville?  See what’s on the venue at the Lincoln Theater.  All three of have regularly scheduled world-renowned performances.

2)    Los Carneros:  Part of southern Napa and Sonoma County, Carneros is a dream made of sparkling wine and Pinot Noir, buttery hillsides and winding roads.  But one of the most extraordinary experiences in Carneros is the Di Rosa Preserve.  No other art collection is comparable. Most of the art is installation art spread among the hills.  Other quirky pieces are in barns and galleries.  This collection of Bay Area artists’ work in the largest in the world.  Enjoy and smile.

3)    Classic Film Buffs:  Head to Sterling Vineyards.  During the summer you can sip wine in their outdoor theater at their Silver Screen.  There’s also the Napa Valley Film Festival.  The films range from the sensuous to the serious and all are a wonderful surprise.

4)    Napa’s Farmers’ Markets:  Every town in the Napa Valley has its own farmer’s market.  Prepare to be blown away!   The town of Napa itself has the Oxbow Market, housing a multitude of goodies.  Every town has more than its share of specialty shops, fresh foods and cafes, locally grown artisan foods and unique handcrafts.

5)    Hike through the Napa Hills:  The Napa Valley, being a valley, of course is surrounded by hills.  Glorious hills on all sides.  Get off the winery trails and enjoy them!  There are plenty of short, flat hiking trails if you’re a little out of shape.  There are also mundo-large hiking trails that take you to the ridges, and there you are, high enough to see the San Francisco and San Pablo Bays.  We particularly like Robert Louis Stevenson Park for its variety of trails and its history.

6)    Napa Valley is Spa Heaven:  Of course, everyone loves the Napa Valley Vineyards.  But there are spa experiences that are just as delicious as Napa’s fine wines.   A myriad of massage types, facials, aromatherapy, deep tissue massage, reflexology, shiatsu, therapeutic rubs and exotic treatments designed from wine country earth and grapes are yours for the asking.

7)    Mystery mixed with Wine:  Ride the rails through wine country—the views and food are as terrific on the Wine Train as are the restored Pullman Cars.  Make it a special evening by taking part in a Murder Mystery night on the Wine Train.  This is truly a night to remember!

Experience the best of the Napa Valley Vineyards.  Then add some spice to your vacation with one of the above.  That’s the best of authentic wine country.