7 Tips for Planning the Perfect Family Wine Country Vacation

Planning a wine vacation (also known as a wine tasting vacation in many circles) may be fun, but it comes with its own set of challenges. Penning down a plan that works for you and everyone involved is not only time consuming, but it can also get extremely overwhelming—to the point where you have no idea where to even start.

How To Plan The Perfect Wine Tasting Vacation

In an attempt to both simplify your vacation planning process and also guide you through your trip, we’ve put together a list of dos, don’ts and how-tos. This post covers all aspects of your trip, and offers some of the best tips for a successful wine vacation—all based on our team’s personal experience that comes from operating in the industry for a long time. So let’s get started:

Figure Out How Much Time You Have For Your Trip

Most people think that setting a budget is the first step in planning a successful wine vacation. We’d like to point out a parallel scenario that works better—figuring out how much time you have to allot to the trip.

If you’re working full-time, you may only be allowed a week or two for your vacation. If you’re retired, you have time for a longer retreat. However long the trip, being sure of the timeline will help you decide a budget accordingly, so you don’t overspend—which brings us to the next step.

Set Your Maximum, All-Inclusive Spending Budget

There’s no end to the number of luxuries you can treat yourself to when you’re planning a wine vacation, and it sometimes gets overwhelming to decide which ones to go for.

One way to narrow down your options is to set an all-inclusive budget.

Setting a budget will help you realistically realize the kind of vacation you want to go for. Most people who opt for more affordable options tend to spend way too much on add-on experiences which they’d already get in a better package.

If you want to go for a luxury wine vacation, our vacation houses at The Wine Stay are in some of the best and most beautiful spots in wine country. We offer a fully immersive luxury experience, complete with a dedicated driver, sommelier guided personalized wine tours, a 5-star chef, and private and professional massage sessions.

Budgeting also helps you narrow down the regions you want to go to—this is another reason why you should budget before you pick your destination so you’re not disappointed in case you aren’t able to go on your dream vacation (yet).

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Narrow Down The Region

The next logical step after figuring out your budget is to narrow down the region. There are hundreds of broad wine regions to pick from, so the choice can get a little tricky.

A good way is to start by picking a country and narrowing it down to a wine region within it. Once you’ve done that, you can narrow things down further to specific sub-appellations and respective wineries.

If your budget and time allow for it, you can also consider visiting multiple broad wine regions within one or more countries. Feel free to add your own flavor to the trip, according to what feels right to you.

Narrow Down The Kind Of Experience You Want

This step really adds a personal touch to your entire trip. Ask yourself these questions: why am I taking this trip? What do I want to get out of this trip? And why is this trip so important to me?

It may also help to keep in mind the nature of your trip; are you going with a group of friends? By yourself? On a romantic getaway? Or are you looking for an interesting adventure?

At The Wine Stay, we offer some of the most exciting guest experiences to cater to all kinds of experiences. If you’re looking for adventure, opt for kayaking on the Russian river with one of our luxury packages.

If you’re looking for a romantic couple of weeks, our luxury vacation houses are in some of the most scenic locations of Wine Country. They’re the epitome of romantic, and if you’re looking to indulge in luxury, take a look at the numerous services we offer, including hot air balloon rides.

Select The Time Of The Year For Your Wine Tasting Vacation

The time of the year has a huge impact on the way your vacation will turn out. For wine professionals, keeping the time of year in mind is common sense, but as wine tourism has blossomed, there are many people who don’t understand the importance of it.

One reason is that depending on the hemisphere your destination lies in, there is a chance that you’ll unknowingly arrive in the middle of winter.

If you’re looking to travel to the northern hemisphere, the summer months are ideal for a wine country vacation—June, July and August—with grape harvests occurring between September and October. Quite on the contrary, summer in the southern hemisphere lasts from December to February, with the grape harvest season being between March and April.

Having said that, when planning your vacation, it will be helpful to consider what you’re looking to see and experience in any given wine region. In case you want to experience harvest season firsthand, it’s a good idea to do your research months ahead and plan accordingly. If spring is more to your liking, and you want to see how the vines start to bud and bloom, make sure to keep the timeframe in mind when you plan.

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Consider Transportation Options

Another important point you need to factor in is transportation—and how you want to get around on this trip. Some luxury vacation companies, like The Wine Stay, offer a designated driver who is responsible for showing guests around and taking them anywhere they want to go. Some guests also prefer hiring a cab or a pre-planned chauffeur service.

There are many people who also prefer driving themselves, but this can get a little tricky and is sometimes even unsafe if you’ve had a little too much wine—which is the purpose of the entire vacation.

Consider The Climate And Pack Accordingly

We’ve already talked about considering the time of the year when planning your wine country vacations. A related factor to also keep in mind is the climate and weather conditions.

Make sure you do your research well and pack accordingly to the season. In case you’re renting a car, it’s a good idea to also take into account the driving conditions around the season.

If you want to opt for the complete experience of a wine tasting tour, get in touch with us.

Immerse yourself in the tranquility of the Wine Country with luxurious vacation rentals in Healdsburg, CA. Apart from visiting 3–4 wineries, our tour also includes a personal sommelier who will answer all your questions and elevate your experience!