Couple walking in Napa
Weddings

Honeymooning in Napa Valley

Between its European vibe and its California weather, Napa Valley is on many short lists for honeymoon destinations.
 

And what’s not to love? There are jaw-dropping views, world-renowned cuisine and wine, and a bucolic pace that inspires romance.

Whether you plan a long weekend or a two-week idyll, the wine country has plenty of options to celebrate your new togetherness.

Here’s a rundown of hotels, restaurants, and wineries, and other attractions and activities that are worthy of incorporating into your special celebration.

Hotels & Inns

  • Auberge du Soleil — Perched on the flank of the Vaca Mountains to the east of Rutherford, this swanky and exclusive resort is renowned for having some of the best views anywhere in Napa Valley. Rooms and suites are ultra-private, and many have outdoor showers. The Michelin-starred on-site Restaurant at Auberge helped define California cuisine and serves up one of the most picturesque backdrops around.

  • Four Seasons Resort and Residences Napa Valley — This Calistoga resort enables honeymooners to start their married lives in the middle of a working vineyard. All rooms have vineyard views, and TRUSS Restaurant + Bar and the pool area look out on vines as well. The on-site Spa Talisa has several different treatments designed for couples.

  • Indian Springs Resort & Spa — For newlyweds who wish to spend most of their honeymoon soaking in mineral waters, Indian Springs is a great option. The main attractions are the mineral pool and spa, which offers a variety of treatments that leverage mineral water as well. Accommodations range from private cottages to modern hotel rooms. Sam’s Social Club, the on-site restaurant, has a lively bar.

  • Senza Hotel — Rooms are modern and comfortable at this Rutherford hotel that sits just steps from a Cabernet vineyard. All rooms feature French doors that open out to a private patio or balcony for enjoying a perfect Napa Valley sunset. Senza is a short walk or drive from great restaurants and wineries. It also is affiliated with HALL Winery in St. Helena.

  • Stanly Ranch — Napa’s newest resort (Spring 2022) is the epitome of luxury, with secluded and spacious accommodations, the sumptuous Halehouse spa, and an on-site restaurant with plenty of nooks for canoodling. Newlyweds can explore the 712-acre property on foot or by complimentary bicycle. Carneros wineries and Downtown Napa are a short drive away.

 

Restaurants

  • Acacia House — Chef Chris Cosentino works his magic at this stately restaurant, located in the historic Victorian at Alila Napa Valley in St. Helena. The menu is eclectic but always features locally sourced produce and proteins – including many from the garden on-site. In summer, lunch on the wraparound porch is one of the most intimate experiences in the entire valley. The bar is classically elegant, too.

  • La Toque — Chef Ken Frank’s Michelin-starred downtown Napa restaurant is one of the most underrated experiences in the valley, and the food here remains consistently great. The eatery also is renowned for its wine program – it has won the Grand Award from Wine Spectator for options and service. For the complete experience, try the seven-course tasting menu, which changes every week.

  • Solbar at Solage — This Calistoga restaurant at Solage Calistoga offers a variety of light and healthy options, including some of the best and most creative vegan and vegetarian dishes in the entire Napa Valley. Solbar also offers an extensive menu of zero-proof cocktails. Ask for a secluded spot on the expansive outdoor patio and relax under the stars (and the warmth of a heat lamp).

  • Bouchon Bistro — Chef Thomas Keller is perhaps most famous for The French Laundry, but this other Yountville restaurant – a more casual bistro – is exceptionally romantic. The menu features traditional French bistro fare and a wine program that spotlights different local producers every month. The Bouchon Bakery, located across a tiny courtyard, makes baked goods that always attract a crowd.

  • RH Yountville Restaurant — Style meets substance at this Yountville destination, which is effectively a fancy restaurant inside a fancy showroom for Restoration Hardware. Reserve a booth in the main dining room and dine on locally sourced salads and dishes (try the lobster roll!) served beneath stunning crystal chandeliers and lighted trees – a surreal experience that will create a honeymoon memory to last a lifetime.

 

Wineries

  • Quintessa — This elegant organic and biodynamic property, located on the eastern edge of Rutherford with gorgeous views, offers several private tasting experiences to accentuate a honeymoon extravaganza. Perhaps the best: an ultra-exclusive session (with six different wines) that unfolds in a glass-walled pavilion at the highest spot on the estate. Another tasting option includes a short hike.

  • Mumm Napa — Bubbles highlight on the menu at Mumm, one of the most recognizable sparkling wine brands in all of California Wine Country. Newlyweds can enjoy private seated tastings in one of two spots: on the outdoor patio, with expansive views of the Rutherford section of the Napa Valley, or on a terrace shaded by old oak trees. Oak Terrace tastings include cheese pairings.

  • Memento Mori — Cabernets from this cult wine label continue to impress, making the intimate experience at the downtown Napa tasting room a one-of-a-kind immersion into hip and cool. Tastings are conducted around a dining room table, where guests can linger to explore the nuances of each release. Time it right and Winemaker Sam Kaplan might even be there himself.

  • Theorem — Tastings at this Calistoga winery force you to slow down—the perfect vibe for a honeymoon. The property sits on Diamond Mountain, where winemaker Thomas River Brown extracts the best fruit for each vintage. A new tasting barn is tucked between the trees and offers breathtaking views of Mount St. Helena. Many tasting experiences are paired with small bites – some include a full lunch.

  • Wheeler Farms — One of the most exclusive tasting experiences in Napa Valley brings together great wine and great food in a historic setting that dates to the early 1800s. Guests at the St. Helena facility taste through five of the current J.H. Wheeler wines, each of which is paired with canapes. Visits begin with a tour and an inside look at the technology behind the operation.

St. Helena

Quintessa

Rutherford

Mumm Napa

 

Attractions

  • The CIA at Copia — The Culinary Institute of America's food and beverage hub in the heart of Napa offers year-round classes – perfect for newlyweds looking to celebrate their nuptials. Also at Copia: The Grove, a picturesque outdoor restaurant, and a Marketplace which is a great spot to spend some of that wedding cash on new housewares.

  • Nimbus Arts — It may seem curious to spot a local art studio on this list, but Nimbus Arts is known up and down the Napa Valley for classes that are perfect for new couples. Pottery classes in particular have developed a loyal following, as some are taught by Nikki and Will Callnan, the duo behind NBC Pottery in Angwin. Some Nimbus classes incorporate local wine and food. Private classes also are available.

  • Napa Valley Gondola — You don’t need to go to Venice to experience the romance of coasting down a waterway in a gondola while being serenaded by a gondolier. This Napa company owns and operates two gondolas from the Main Street Boat Dock all summer long. The outfit even offers certain packages that include food and wine to enjoy on the water.

  • Bothe-Napa Valley State Park — Napa Valley’s most popular state park is a great spot to spend a day on the trails. One of the park’s most iconic hikes winds through redwood groves to the top of the ridgeline, where the entire valley spreads out below. In summer, the park also operates yurts and a pool, making it a great destination for honeymooners (and all travelers, really) on a budget.