6 Tips to Planning a Great Trip to Wine Country
California has several wine regions that are fun to tour. If you are planning a trip for your friends or family to one of these areas, you may not know where to start or how to approach the planning process. Your first order of business may be to find a good wine tour transportation company to get you and your group around to the vineyards and then to your hotel safely. These can add a lot to wine tours. Here are some other tips to making your trip more special.
- Do not overbook yourself. You do not have to tour a ton of wineries to have a good experience on your wine tour adventure. Often, experts recommend planning to view two wineries each day. If you are going with a wine tour transportation company, you may be able to fit more in but you should not feel like you have to. Many of the vineyards have great tastings that pair the wines with fabulous chef-prepared cuisine. These experiences take longer but can be worth it. The goal is not to race through 10 wineries in a day but to take your time and enjoy the experience.
- Look at smaller vineyards. You may need to make an appointment to tour some of the smaller establishments but that should not deter you. There are rules and regulations that govern how wineries show off their space and sometimes it is necessary for the smaller places to take appointments, especially for busy times such as the weekend or on holidays. That does not mean you have to do this far in advance just before the tour starts. If you have hired a wine tour transportation company, they can offer a lot of guidance in this area. These smaller establishments can give you a more personal experience. You may even spend time with the owner.
- Be safe. If you want everyone in your trip to be able to savor the wine, go with a wine tour transportation company. While the size of the pours is not huge, it adds up. While the professionals will spit out the wine rather than swallow, most tourists do not do that. A wine tour transportation company can get you a party bus to move your group from winery to winery safely. They also know where they are going so you do not have to worry that GPS is sending you on a wild goose chase. The drivers know the areas well and can also direct your groups to sights that you may otherwise miss. No vacation is improved with a DUI so go with professional drivers to make your experience safer and more fun.
- Look into festivals. If you do not have a time of year set in stone, do some online research into the wine festivals that happen throughout the season. These are often great ways to check out the local wine and food while listening to some great music. They also often have some fun and educational events that can help you learn a lot about the making of wine and what foods they go well with.
- Skip the perfume and cologne. The aroma of wine is a big part of the wine tasting experience. Wearing heavy perfume or cologne will not just impact your experience but the people who are around you. Give the stuff a break during your tour of the wineries and you will have a better experience and that of the people around you.
- It really is ok to spit. It is true that in most of polite society, we are all taught not to spit but when it comes to wine tasting, it is ok. It is the way the professionals sample wine. Wine cellars have drains for this purpose. Of course if you are outside, there is the ground. For tasting rooms, there is usually a special bucket for this purpose. This is the one time in life when spitting is not only accepted but it is expected. If you are concerned about becoming intoxicated, this is the way to prevent that.
Wine tours can be a lot of fun. These tips can help you plan a great trip.