things to do in Napa California. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel.

Cool Things to Do in Napa California

Please enjoy this McCool Travel look at some cool things to do in Napa California.

Be assured that Napa is open for business and you should visit. Although damaging parts of Napa County, the recent fires did not touch any buildings or parts of downtown Napa.

Downtown Napa recently hosted me (and other travel writers) in order to discover and explore things to do in Napa and share my findings with the McCool Travel network.

things to do in Napa California. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel.

things to do in Napa: buy cool, clever wine pun gifts

Cool Things To Do in Napa California

Getting to Napa California

Downtown Napa is about 90 minutes driving time from San Francisco airport (SFO) and a little closer to Sacramento. Tideline will soon operate water shuttles between downtown Napa and San Francisco. That will be fun. Because everything is so close in downtown Napa, a car is not needed once you are there.

Napa Activities

Public Art in Downtown Napa

Whenever a Napa downtown commercial building project exceeds $250,000, 1% of the total cost goes toward public art. This cool initiative results in many clever and attractive public art pieces around Napa.

Napa Art Walk supports and promotes public art in downtown Napa. Their main initiative is temporary art displays, changing every two years, with the favorites (voted by public) becoming permanent. Discover your own favorite art pieces by walking and exploring downtown Napa.

Gordon Huether Art

For more art, head a little outside of Napa to Gordon Huether Studio + Gallery. My group rode bicycles from Oxbow Public Market to the studio, guided by Justin from Enjoy Napa Valley. Along the way to the studio, we rode along the Napa River and a few vineyards along Monticello Road.

things to do in Napa California. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel.

things to do in Napa California: bike tour

As for the art studio, learn how Gordon Huether creates large scale art installations. His creations adorn airports, courthouses, hospitals, universities, and many buildings around the world.

Touring a master artist’s studio in Napa. He does large scale installations all over the world. You have probably seen…

Posted by Charles McCool on Wednesday, October 25, 2017

 

Anette’s Chocolate

Visit Anette’s in downtown Napa for a sweet treat or several. At Anette’s Chocolate, Anette and Brent (her brother) combine exquisite chocolate creations with Napa’s amazing wines. During a chocolate tasting (YES!), Anette showed our group the proper way to taste chocolate. Check out the scrumptious homemade ice cream if you make it past the dizzying array of chocolate products.

CIA – Culinary Institute of America

Distinctive dining at The Restaurant at CIA Copia pairs simple, seasonally-inspired dishes with curated beverages (wines, handcrafted cocktails, and beers). Interact with chefs in the beautiful open kitchen and experience true hospitality from the staff.

OK, several things here.Remember yesterday I visited Gordon Huether Studio? He also made this fork, composed of 7,000…

Posted by Charles McCool on Thursday, October 26, 2017

 

Wine Hall of Fame

Also in the CIA building is the Wine Hall of Fame.

Crush Lounge

For a really fun time head to the Crush Lounge in Meritage Resort and Spa for some indoor bowling.

Dinner and bowling. Too much fun in Napa.Crush LoungeThe Meritage Resort and SpaDo NapaWrite On RubeeTraverse Blog & ShopCalifornia Through My LensVisit California

Posted by Charles McCool on Tuesday, October 24, 2017

 

Where to Eat in Napa California (and Drink)

Napa General Store

Experience super fresh local fare in an pleasant outdoor riverfront setting at Napa General Store. Located in historic Napa Mill, Napa General Store also supports local artisans by displaying and selling their products.

Lunch time with the Napa mayor and wine tasting 🍷 at lovely Napa General Store in Do Napa.California Through My…

Posted by Charles McCool on Tuesday, October 24, 2017

 

Eight Noodle Shop

Magnificent in-house made noodles and super fresh local ingredients rule the tasty Asian fare at Eight Noodle Shop. Owner David Lu, an area restaurant veteran, patiently answered questions from our group while offering suggestions. I selected the daily special.

Salmon ramen with super fresh local sweet corn is happening right now. Amazing. Al fresco dining rocks.Eight Noodle…

Posted by Charles McCool on Wednesday, October 25, 2017

 

Celadon

Consider Celadon for a special anniversary or romantic meal in downtown Napa. Choose from their lovely courtyard setting or the elegant dining room. In either spot, select from the freshest seafood and highest quality natural ingredients influenced by Mediterranean, Asian, and American flavors.

things to do in Napa California. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel.

places to eat in Napa: Celadon

Bounty Hunter

Local favorite Bounty Hunter offers amazing BBQ (recently named one of USA’s best), a dizzying selection of wines from around the world, and dozens of whiskeys and spirits. They receive high praise for their beer can chicken but I encourage you to try their ribs.

things to do in Napa California. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel.

places to eat in Napa California: Bounty Hunter

C Casa (Oxbow Public Market)

Located in the vibrant Oxbow Public Market, C CASA results from Catherine Bergen’s (founder of Made in Napa Valley brand) vision and passion to serve good, clean food served in a fast-paced and fun environment.

things to do in Napa California. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel.

C Casa at Owbox Public Market in Napa

Capp Heritage Tasting Room

Plan to visit one or more of the many wine tasting salons in downtown Napa. Capp Heritage has deep roots (back to Napa’s first vineyard), a lot of Victorian charm, and art deco magnificence.

things to do in Napa California. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel.

places to drink in Napa: Capp Heritage

Fieldwork Brewing

Also in Oxbow Public Market, Fieldwork Brewing focuses on exceptional, honest beer making.

things to do in Napa California. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel.

places to drink in Napa: Fieldwork Brewing at Oxbow Public Market

 

Where to Stay in Napa California

River Terrace Inn is a luxury hotel located along the Napa River and vibrant downtown Napa is within a 15 minute walk. McCool Travel tip: the Huevos Rancheros here are fantastic.

Good morning from River Terrace Inn in lovely downtown Napa. I do love al fresco dining and chilling in California. Napa is open for business and the weather is absolutely magnificent.Do NapaVisit California

Posted by Charles McCool on Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Like other Embassy Suites properties, Embassy Suites Napa Valley offers more space (two separate rooms), a cooked to order breakfast, and complimentary evening reception. Unlike other Embassy Suites properties, Embassy Suites Napa Valley feels like a resort, complete with their own residents swans.

I love a hotel with their own swans. So much better than bringing your own. 🤣Embassy Suites by Hilton Napa ValleyDo NapaVisit California

Posted by Charles McCool on Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Opening very soon, Archer Hotel Napa provides an elegant boutique hotel option in the heart of downtown Napa.

things to do in Napa California. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel.

where to stay in Napa California: Archer Hotel Napa


What are some of your favorite things to do in Napa California?

For more information about things to do in Napa, visit:

Downtown Napa: website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

Bucket List Destination: Napa, California #DoNapa


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Things To Do in Napa California published on 28 October 2017.

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15 Responses to “Cool Things to Do in Napa California”

  1. Anne November 2, 2017 at 3:51 pm #

    Sounds delicious – for ALL the senses! Passed on to family who’s soon headed that way.

    • McCoolTravel (@CharlesMcCool) November 3, 2017 at 12:21 am #

      Thank you, Anne. let your family member know they can contact me with any questions. The people of Napa are very helpful and friendly, though.

  2. wendy November 2, 2017 at 12:30 pm #

    We haven’t been to Napa in quite awhile. You post inspires me to go. We do have family that lives in the area and works in the wine industry. I thinks it is time for another visit! I love the idea of a ferry from SF. Your dinner at Celadon is my kind of food.

  3. pattimorrow November 1, 2017 at 11:56 pm #

    It looks like there’s lots more to do in Napa Valley than just tour vineyards. The sculptures are amazing, and I would love to do that bike tour — the countryside is so pretty.

  4. The Restless Voyager October 31, 2017 at 5:41 pm #

    Happy to know that they survived the fires. You inspired me to visit!

  5. Rome October 30, 2017 at 8:30 pm #

    So glad this part got through it. Have to roll through again next time we’re up there.

  6. RoarLoud October 30, 2017 at 5:25 pm #

    Great to hear they are doing well! Great food, art and chocolate- I need to go!

    • McCoolTravel (@CharlesMcCool) October 30, 2017 at 10:35 pm #

      Absolutely. I learned a lot about chocolate in Napa, of all places. History, production, how to properly taste and compare, and more.

  7. Elaine Masters October 30, 2017 at 12:43 pm #

    I so hope that all these survived the fire. As soon as I can get up there I’ll investigate and work your list. Some unique spots here!

    • McCoolTravel (@CharlesMcCool) October 30, 2017 at 4:05 pm #

      They have, Elaine! I was in Napa a couple of days ago and wanted to rush this article out to tell everyone to visit. All of these places are open and craving visitors. The affected areas of Napa county are elsewhere.

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    […] Josh McNair of California Through My Lens. Josh was a member of a fun group of travel writers in Napa earlier this month. His travel brand is very popular and one of the top resources for things to do […]

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