10 Unique Experiences Await Downtown Napa Visitors

Locals who live in or near Downtown Napa know what a treasure it is. The shining star of Napa Valley, Downtown Napa offers an abundance of excellent restaurants, a variety of wine establishments and enough indoor and outdoor activities to fill up several calendar months.

However, if you’re visiting for just a few days or a week or two, make sure to try as many of these truly unique experiences as you can. Then, before you head home, make sure to book your return trip to Downtown Napa so you can experience them all over again.

Photo Credit: @NapaGondola

1. SIGHTSEEING BY GONDOLA

Whether you’re traveling with your partner, a group of friends or family, you can enjoy a taste of Venice with a sightseeing tour by an authentic Venetian gondola. Departing from Downtown Napa, each tour is private and can be customized to emphasize your interests. Enjoy the beauty of the Napa River during the day or delight in the sparkling lights at night. Either way, you’ll be within walking distance of an amazing variety of restaurants, wine establishments and shopping venues. Please note that gondola services are seasonal. 

Photo Credit: @WineTrain and @vquirarte

2. NAPA VALLEY WINE TRAIN

Sit back and relax aboard the Napa Valley Wine Train, one in a series of early 20th-century Pullman train cars, while eyeing the sights along the 36-mile round-trip ride from Downtown Napa to St. Helena and back. From a two-hour ride to an all-day tour, you’ll experience extraordinary scenery, a gourmet meal or perhaps even the fun and excitement of a murder mystery, depending on the package you choose. Explore Napa Valley while savoring the glory days of luxury train travel.

Photo Credit: @napavalleyballoons and @sfdcdragon

3. HOT AIR BALLOON RIDE

As wonderful as Napa Valley is to visit on the ground, the view from above is simply breathtaking. Known for ideal weather year-round, the area is home to lush, rolling hills, mountain ranges,  beautiful coastline and of course, awe-inspiring vineyards. So, after a relaxing stay in one of Downtown Napa’s exquisite hotels, inns or bed and breakfasts, take a sunrise adventure high above the region for an experience you’ll never forget. There are packages for couples – after all, 1,000 feet in the air is the perfect spot to pop the question – as well as groups.

Photo Credit: @NapaValleyWineTrolley

4. NAPA VALLEY WINE TROLLEY

Hop aboard a replica of a California Street cable car in Downtown Napa for a casual tour of Napa Valley wineries or tasting rooms, and learn about the history of one of the world’s most unique wine regions from the entertaining tour guides. Whether you’re a first-timer to Napa Valley or an experienced vino lover, you’ll enjoy the scenery and delight in learning about the fascinating world of wine.

Photo Credit: @NapaArtWalk

5. NAPA ARTWALK

Unique pieces of art that contain symbolic movement or actual motion for their effects are on display in Downtown Napa  at the ArtWalk. The biannual juried exhibition features 10 sculptures created by seven artists from four Western states – all with the theme of “Play.” Visitors can vote for their favorite sculpture, with the winner of the People’s Choice Award receiving a complimentary two-night getaway in Napa.

Photo Credit: @wilfredslounge

6. WILFRED’S LOUNGE

Aloha! If you’re unable to make it to the Hawaiian Islands, head over to the first and only Tiki bar in Napa Valley. According to Wilfred’s Lounge, “We’ve taken the best parts of Napa Valley Wine Country, gave it a shake and a dash of Hawaiian culture.” The Tiki bar and restaurant offers an authentic Hawaiian atmosphere, island-inspired cocktails and cuisine, a view of the Napa River and surprises around every corner. Mahalo!

Photo Credit: @californiabrandyhouse

7. CALIFORNIA BRANDY HOUSE

Where else but in the wine tasting capital of the world could you find an establishment that focuses completely on … brandy! California Brandy House, located in the heart of Downtown Napa’s First Street , is dedicated to premium California brandies. Learn about the history of brandy in California, including how it’s manufactured and bottled, and relax on the terrace while tasting the varieties offered at California Brandy House.

Photo Credit: @OxbowPublicMarket

8. OXBOW PUBLIC MARKET

Situated along the Napa River and Napa River Trail, and adjacent to the Oxbow RiverStage outdoor festival-style venue, the Oxbow Public Market is a 40,000-square-foot gathering place. Featuring a diverse mix of local food vendors, artisan cafes and an organic produce outlet for local farms, the Oxbow Market is passionate about promoting sustainable agriculture and spotlighting local food producers. From spices and coffees to full meals and desserts, prepare to spend a full day at this truly unique marketplace.

Photo Credit: @TheModelBakery

9. THE MODEL BAKERY

The English muffins at The Model Bakery, located in the Oxbow Public Market, are not your run-of-the-mill store brand English muffins. Would Oprah Winfrey name them one of her “Favorite Things” for two years in a row if they were? Stop by for breakfast or lunch and check out their world-class artisan bread, pastries, salads, desserts and coffee. Show up at 2 p.m. and grab a “late bake” baguette right out of the oven!

Photo Credit: @CIAatCopia

10. THE CIA AT COPIA

Known as a “Culinary Adventure for Food Lovers in the Napa Valley,” The CIA (Culinary Institute of America) at Copia wants you to “Feed Your Joy.” That’s not hard to do in this Oxbow District gathering spot, where you can partake in seasonal dishes prepared by CIA chefs, grab a Mediterranean lunch to go, taste a variety of wines via self-serve dispensers and take a cooking or beverage class in the CIA’s state-of-the-art Hestan Teaching Kitchen.

Discover these unique experiences and discover the beauty of Downtown Napa. Book your stay today.

YOUR TRIP WILL BE MEASURED BY THE MEASURES WE TAKE

Your safety is our top priority — come here to get away and restore yourself. We have put measures in place to ensure businesses and lodging properties are ready to make your stay and entire Downtown Napa experience extraordinary.

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