- Places to Explore
- Travel Tips
- Fodor's Choice
The town of Napa is the valley's largest, and visitors who get a glimpse of the strip malls and big-box stores from Highway 29 often speed right past on the way to smaller and more seductive Yountville or St. Helena. But Napa doesn't entirely deserve its dowdy reputation. After many years as a blue-collar town that more or less turned its back on the Wine Country scene, Napa has spent the last few years attempting to increase its appeal to visitors, with somewhat mixed results. A walkway that follows the river through town, completed in 2008, makes the city more pedestrian-friendly, and in the last two years a surprising number of high-profile new restaurants have popped up, but you'll still find a handful of empty storefronts among the wine bars and tasting rooms.
Many visitors choose to stay in Napa after experiencing hotel sticker shock; prices in Napa are marginally more reasonable than elsewhere. If you set up your home base here, you'll undoubtedly want to spend some time getting out of town and into the beautiful countryside, but don't neglect taking a stroll to see what Napa's least pretentious town has to offer, or checking out the culinary landscape, which seems to be changing faster here than anywhere else in the valley.
Napa at a Glance
Sports and Outdoors
Free Fodor's Newsletter
Subscribe today for weekly travel inspiration, tips, and special offers.
Fodor's Trip Planning Ideas
- Weekend Getaways: Fodor's Recommends the Best Weekend Escapes in the US
- Great American Vacation: Find Your Next U.S. Trip with Fodor's
- 80 Degrees: Fodor's Helps You Find Your Best Beach Vacation Spots
- Go List: Fodor's Top 25 Places to Go in 2013
- Hotel Awards 2012: Fodor's 100 Top Hotels
- Best of Europe: Fodor's Picks the Best Places to Visit in Europe
- $129* & up -- Premium Economy in Summer to LA, One Way Virgin America
- $116 & up -- Anaheim Hotels near Disney, Save 40% BookIt.com
- $72-$96 -- Anaheim Hotel near Disney w/Breakfast, $100 Off BookIt.com
- $349 & up -- 5-Night Pacific Coast Cruise on Norwegian Norwegian Cruise Line
- $8.97 & up -- Car Rentals across California CarRentals.com