If you are planning a trip to Napa there are many decisions to be made. From selecting iconic & luxurious lodging to the hundred dollar questions. Should & can we bring the kiddos?
I am lucky enough to have several friends with outstanding little ones being raised to be world travelers and exposed to endless adventures and experiences. Generally speaking these small ones are challenged to grow in culture, knowledge and diplomacy. The parent-child conversations are oftentimes didactic in nature and the flow of knowledge is something to behold. In fact, recently I had the honor of hosting a couple of young professors from an Ivy League institution along with their two elementary school-aged little girls. As we drove both mom and dad provided the girls with endless facts about viticulture, the history of California and nature in general. Eavesdropping was delightful to say the least. These little ones were equipped well by their parents. Backpacks full of games and activities along with tools such as digital cameras aimed at keeping their mind and hearts busy made their trip to Napa memorable and child appropriate.
As for us once the parents informed us of the upcoming arrival of our little guests we designed an itinerary by carefully including wineries with more family oriented features and avoiding venues more suited for all adult activities. Additionally we tailored our guest amenities to include child-friendly snacks and finally we made sure to suggest activities such as air balloon rides to provide the family with something to remember for years to come.
Every coin has two sides and as much as we are able to tailor fantastic trips for families visiting Napa, we have also learned that even with the best of planning sometimes including children can present unique challenges for parents and hinder the freedom to fully enjoy the array of experiences Napa has to offer.
In many wineries you are likely to conduct walking tours in uneven terrain where strollers may become problematic. A day of wine tasting is an experience of the senses that demands a balance between relaxation and the ability to engage all your senses, if you attention is divided it will diminish your enjoyment of what Napa has to offer.
Napa is considered one of the top romantic destinations in the world. Many honeymooners, anniversary celebrants and lovers come to Napa seeking magic and solace. Sometimes in an effort to create a family adventure, and if something goes just slightly wrong and we end up with a little one experiencing a meltdown we may just be robbing our fellow visitor from having the idyllic setting they so coveted when they planned their Napa getaway.
If at the end of the day you decide to make it a family trip engaging a concierge level tour operator is probably one of the wisest moves you will ever make. We can help you handpick wineries best suited for your needs and you will have the freedom to enjoy a few adult libations while we drive for you and we make sure everyone in the family has a safe journey across wine country.
If you are staying at one of the finer lodging venues such as Bardessono don’t hesitate to ask concierge to help you arrange a local vetted babysitter. By engaging the services of a professional you will gift yourself and your spouse with a few hours of undivided attention and romance.
Bring grandma and grandpa and make a plan to divide and conquer. While they enjoy a day at the bay visiting museums, aquariums and other child-friendly adventures just a short drive away from Napa we can whisk you away and help you discover the newest and trendiest wineries in Napa and Sonoma