I just got back from an incredibly fun trip to the Guerneville area with friends. All 8 of us (plus a very cute puppy named Yuki) spent Memorial Day Weekend running around wine tasting, hiking under Redwoods, grilling and spending a LOT of time hot tubbing. Robin and I frequently travel just the two of us, so it was so much fun going on a trip with our friends!
I’ve been looking forward to this trip for months because, other than this just for fun blog post and one Instagram photo, it was pretty much a no work trip. (As bloggers, our job is to travel, which is awesome, but it means trips are WORK. This was a “play” trip!) There isn’t much cell service up in the rural Guerneville area and our Airbnb wifi worked only about half the time, which forced us all to set screens aside and just hang out. It was so refreshing.
3 hours, many wine tastings and 1 cheese plate later, we hopped across the street to Chalk Hill winery. This winery is HUGE, the property goes on forever. On my first visit to Chalk Hill a couple of years ago, we did a humvee tour of the land and I was blown away by how large it is. The tasting room has a small patio overlooking the vineyards. It’s very pretty.
Wine tasting culture is all about good friends, good wine, cheese plates, sunshine & nothing but time to spend together.
After wine tasting, we stopped by the new Russian River Brewery in Windsor, which is HUGE you guys. It’s a sprawling complex, a big step up from their small taproom in Santa Rosa. We go wine tasting all the time (perks of living in California!) but beer is actually my go-to drink. Russian River makes fantastic brews, my favorite is the legendary Pliny the Elder. If you have a chance to visit or if you see this on a drink menu anywhere, try it!
We rented out a large house on Airbnb that had enough bedrooms to fit the whole group. It had a really great hot tub out back that we hung out in each night. When booking Airbnbs, I always look for one with some sort of outdoor hot tub or tub like this one in Joshua Tree! If you are traveling to the area with a large group, this house is stunning. If you have a smaller group, I recommend this house or this one. There’s also the Boon Spa Hotel which was near our Airbnb and it looked SO dang cute.
The next morning we went hiking around the Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Reserve, a stunning Redwoods park that I had no idea existed! I love the Muir Woods, but it can get really crowded, as it’s really close to San Francisco. Armstrong Reserve has so many Redwoods trees, one is over 1400 years old! There are a lot of trail options, we did an enjoyable flat 1.7-mile hike around the valley because one friend is 7 months pregnant (not intense hiking ready, and to be honest, after a day of drinking, I wasn’t either – ha!)
We also went on a wine tasting and tour of Korbel Winery, which is such a stunning winery. Plus, the tour is FREE ya’ll! You get four free tastings and about a 30-minute tour of the faculties, which contains tons of cool history (like how one of the founding brothers escaped prison in Europe, came out to California for the gold rush.)
The tasting room and deck at Korbel is under a grove of tall Redwood trees. It’s just stunning. There’s also a little cafe there where you can order lunch, buy a $10 bottle of Korbel California Champagne and picnic out on their desk. Perfection.
We ended our weekend exploring the Barlow in Sebastopol, a super unique complex full of restaurants, artisan shops and breweries. I love coming here to touch all the nice towels at Elise Green, have a cup of Honey Lavender ice cream at Two Dogs Night Creamery and burittos & beer at Crooked Goat Brewery.
We had such a fun weekend hanging out with such amazing people. Right now, Robin and I are back home binging Netflix and catching up on much-needed cuddles with Twyla. Back to reality.