Things To Do in Napa in December

Advisor - Brenda El-Ghazzawy
Curated By

Brenda El-Ghazzawy

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  • Napa Valley

  • Food & Wine

  • Luxury Travel

  • Outdoors

  • Entertainment

  • Sightseeing

Rutherford Winery vineyards
Curator’s statement

December in Napa Valley offers a unique blend of festive activities, exceptional wine experiences, and serene landscapes. Whether you're seeking a romantic getaway, a holiday adventure or a relaxing retreat, Napa in December is an enchanting destination.

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Where to stay In Napa Valley

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Stanly Ranch, Auberge Resorts Collection

Experience the epitome of wine country luxury at Stanly Ranch in Napa, where vineyard views and exceptional hospitality create an unforgettable retreat.

Fora Perks
  • $100 hotel / resort credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

Alila Napa Valley

Contemporary hotel by vineyards and the Spring Mountains with trendy rooms and suites.

Fora Perks
  • $100 hotel / resort credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out, whenever possible.

Four Seasons Resort and Residences Napa Valley

Unique Four Seasons accommodations set within a world-class vineyard.

Fora Perks
  • When you book Four Seasons through Fora, you will enjoy exclusive Four Seasons Preferred Partner benefits. Your advisor will be pleased to give you more details.

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Advisor - Brenda El-Ghazzawy

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Things to do In Napa Valley

Wine Trolley

Discover Holiday Celebrations and Festivals

December in Napa is a festive time with holiday celebrations and Christmas markets. These festivals often feature local crafts, holiday foods and mulled wine, creating a cheerful atmosphere. At night you will also see the beautiful holiday lights; I especially loved the lights in the charming town of Yountville.

Try Wine and Food Pairings

Many wineries and restaurants in Napa offer special wine and food pairings during December. These events often feature seasonal ingredients and holiday-themed dishes, perfectly complemented by Napa's renowned wines. At Stag's Leap Wine Cellars you can indulge in an elegant experience in which their world-renowned wines pair with farm-to-table cuisine.

Explore Napa's Wineries

Napa is synonymous with exceptional wineries. From the historic estates to the boutique vineyards, each offers a unique insight into the art of winemaking. You can tour the vineyards, learn about the wine-making process, and, of course, sample the exquisite wines.

Getting around to the different wineries can be a bit of a challenge because you definitely want to stay safe and not drink and drive. The perfect solution is taking a wine tour on the Napa Valley Wine Trolley. Taking the trolley will also be more cost-effective than hiring a private driver. The trolley takes you to three wineries and a wonderful pizzeria for lunch. The wineries you visit may include Rutherford Ranch, Cosentino and Bougetz Cellars depending on availability.

Experience Spa Retreats

The cooler weather in December makes it an ideal time for a spa retreat. You can visit the Springhouse spa at Stanly Ranch and try their Springhouse Circuit, which is designed for restoration and recovery. It includes innovative treatments like a hyperbaric oxygen chamber and cold plunge bath.

Travel Tips

  • Check the weather and pack accordingly

December in Napa can be cool, with temperatures often dipping in the evenings. Pack warm clothing, including layers, a good jacket, and comfortable shoes for both indoor activities and outdoor explorations.

  • Plan for holiday hours

Keep in mind that wineries, restaurants, and attractions may have altered hours during the holiday season. Check in advance and make reservations where possible.

  • Drive safely

If you’re renting a car, be prepared for potentially wet and foggy conditions. The roads in and around Napa Valley can be winding and require extra caution in winter weather.

  • Explore beyond the Vineyards

Take advantage of Napa's beautiful natural surroundings with a drive through the rolling hills or a visit to nearby attractions outside the valley.

  • Relax and enjoy the slower pace

One of the benefits of visiting Napa in December is the more relaxed pace. Take this opportunity to unwind and savor the experiences without the rush of peak tourist seasons.

Places to eat & drink In Napa Valley

Lunch at Auberge Du Soleil

Breakfast

Bear at Stanly Ranch

From the coffee to the farm egg omelet and seasonal fruit, everything is excellent.

Lunch

Hog Island Oyster Co at the Oxbow Public Market.

Wonderful fresh oysters and small bites. The halibut ceviche is served in a coconut leche de tigre, which is unique and delicious.

The Bar at Auberge du Soleil

Auberge du Soleil

Great shareable bites, salads, wines, and the most amazing view of Napa Valley.

Dinner

Bear at Stanly Ranch

For resort dining, and being a new resort, Bear is impressive. The half chicken, which is topped with hibiscus harissa, is so flavorful, unique, and full of umami.

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The a la carte menu is filled with beautifully presented and elevated gourmet dishes. The sweet potato custard is amazing. The desserts are even better.

La Toque

Gourmet food with professional service. Excellent steak served with fiscalini cheddar pearl tapioca. The desserts were also delicious. The wine list is extensive and well-curated by the wine director Mike Lee.

Advisor - Brenda El-Ghazzawy

Travel Advisor

Brenda El-Ghazzawy

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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Napa Valley.