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So, What's the Best Time of Year to Visit the Wine Country?

California wine country offers visitors stunning views and a great wine experiences year-round. As a visitor, you should pick the best time to visit depending on how you feel about crowds or how much activity you want to see.

December and January
Winery activities are at a minimum and the vineyards are dormant. The winter months are usually very quiet and uncrowded, and are therefore a good time to take in the wine country at a leisurely pace. This is the best time to avoid the crowds of the more popular wine regions.

February through April
The vineyards begin to show signs of life, beginning with wildflowers and culminating with new growth on the vines. Temperatures tend to be moderate and the clouds and occasional rain offers the visitor a picturesque canvas.

May through August
This is the season for the vineyards and grapevines to be at their most magnificent. By the end of August, grapevines are full of fruit and the wineries are gearing up for the coming harvest. During the summer months, wine country is usually hot and dry, and crowds (especially during weekends) are to be expected, especially in the most popular regions.

September and October
September through mid-October is grape harvest time in California wine country and the wineries are at their busiest time with the new harvest. The activities draw large crowds hoping for a first-hand look at the grape crush, however some wineries may limit their winery tours due to the increased activity and safety concerns.

Following the harvest, the grapevine leaves turn fall colors before the vines become dormant for the winter. Gone are the crowds of the harvest, however weekends can still get quite busy.

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