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-   -   Wine Country -Stay in Sonoma or Napa (https://www.fodors.com/community/united-states/wine-country-stay-in-sonoma-or-napa-845175/)

cfrieday Jun 15th, 2010 05:29 PM

Wine Country -Stay in Sonoma or Napa
 
We are planning a trip to Napa and intend to rent a home. The question is should we rent in Healdsburg or Napa. Both sound great, but I am looking for some input. Any help appreciated.

elnap29 Jun 15th, 2010 05:53 PM

I think you can't go wrong either way. Both areas are beautiful. Just take a look on VRBO and see what appeals in your price range.

StuDudley Jun 15th, 2010 05:54 PM

Healdsburg is our favorite town in the Wine country, and the Dry Creek Valley (just west of Healdsburg) is our favorite winegrowing region. Alexander Valley just north & east is another of our favorite winegrowing areas.

Napa is actually a fairly large city and you might not get the wine country "feel" there.

IMO, this is a "no brainer" - go with Healdsburg unless you want lots of city amenities.

Stu Dudley

elnap29 Jun 15th, 2010 06:15 PM

I beg to differ with Stu. Napa is not a large city. It is a small town but not as tiny as the little towns "Upvalley" in the Napa Valley. The entire Napa Valley is much smaller than the Sonoma County Wine Country area. It is only about a 30 min. drive from one end of the Napa Valley to the other. If you look at a map and check your VRBO listings, you can see where the homes are located. The further north you go, the more expensive it is for hotels, but not necessarily for home rentals. Calistoga is at the north end, the city of Napa is at the south end. Calistoga is a very quaint little town and is about a 30 min drive through the Alexander Valley to Healdsburg.
I don't want to start a Sonoma Vs. Napa argument. It is all very accessible. The city of Napa has some charming areas and is part of "Wine Country", too. Nothing is far. As I said, if you want to rent a house, check the listings in both areas and see what appeals.

Austin Jun 15th, 2010 08:29 PM

I'd take Healdsburg and the surrounding areas over Napa. I never cared for the Napa feel. I may give it another try here real soon, but prefer Healdsburg, Dry Creek area. I saw many nice places on vrbo.com or homeaway.com

StuDudley Jun 15th, 2010 09:33 PM

>>Napa is not a large city.<<

Yep - smaller than Santa Rosa - but MUCH larger than Yountville, Oakville, Rutherford, St Helena, Caisitoga, Geyserville, Healdsburg, and most every other "villages" in the rural wine country - except the city of Somoma (Napa seems larger than Somona). The OP, however, never mentioned the town of Sonoma as a possibility.

Go for Healdsburg !!!

Stu Dudley

Shar Jun 15th, 2010 09:38 PM

Healdsburg. It is a most charming small town with a central plaza, great restaurants, lovely walkable neighborhoods with victorian houses, antique shops, movie house, wineries in town and close by, one of my most favorite cities in the wine country. Hope you find what you are looking for....

davesonoma Jun 16th, 2010 06:14 AM

I'm biased towards Healdsburg, so let me just agree with everyone who praises the plaza, food, Tuesday night music on the plaza, farmer's market on Thursday and Saturday, and general air of casual fun. Napa Valley is a great place to visit...from Healdsburg.

Otis_B_Driftwood Jun 16th, 2010 01:18 PM

If you are talking about renting a house in downtown Healdsburg or Napa, I'd say neither. Find a place in the vineyards or the country instead. VRBO lists many nice options for staying in the vineyards. In my opinion, the least desirable locations are the big towns like Napa, Sonoma, Healdsburg, or Santa Rosa.

In Sonoma County, look at the Sebastopol, Forestville, Occidental area or my favorite - the Glen Ellen, Kenwood, Sonoma Mountain area.

In Napa, look at something near Yountville, Oakville, or St. Helena or the Silverado Trail area where many properties have outstanding views. Other Napa locations to consider are Mt. Veder, Angwin, and Spring Mountain. If you really want to be near the town of Napa, look at the Coombsville district or the area near the Silverado Resort.

What's best really depends on what your interests are and what kind of rental you are looking for.

passerbye Jun 16th, 2010 01:33 PM

Have you been to wine country before? If not, I suggest you look to rent in Napa Valley, but not necessarily in Napa. Yountville would be great. But, so would something in the hills above the Silverado Trail.

sf7307 Jun 16th, 2010 01:34 PM

I love Healdsburg, and would be very happy to stay downtown!


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