A Wine Lover's Guide to the Best Airbnbs in California
It’s hard to think "California" without thinking "wine". The state is home to some of the world’s top wine regions, including Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino, and the Sierra Foothills. And certain California wines—like this Locations California Red Blend, which blends grapes from all over the Golden State’s renowned vineyards—inspire us to see the very plots that make California the country’s top wine-producing state.
Want to sleep near the vineyards themselves or plan a weekend in the regions that turn grapes into the wine we love? These nine standout Airbnbs throughout California are properties that promise to woo oenophiles.
Occidental, Sonoma County
Sneak away solo or with a partner to this sleek Airbnb in West Sonoma County. Located in quaint Occidental, this home is situated on a tiny two-block-long main street filled with galleries, restaurants, and shops. It's also the mid-point of the scenic Bohemian Highway, which attracts cyclists and runners alike.
As for the inside? Picture this: a bedroom that opens up to the great outdoors, a modern wood-burning fireplace, a glass of your favorite wine in hand, and spotty cell service. Is there anything else you dream of? (Oh, there’s a pool, too.)
Glen Ellen, Sonoma County
This ranch-style home in Glen Ellen, a charming village of 784 people nestled in the heart of Sonoma County, might be the closest you’ll get to the vines themselves: There are over 40 wineries within five miles of the property (including wine bars, cafes, and farms).
Plus, there’s a pool, hot tub, and courtyard complete with lights out back, illuminating the vineyard in the distance. You can grill, play bocce, hang out on a hammock, or head to the many tasting rooms located within walking distance (no designated driver required).
Graton, Sonoma County
If a trip to California has you seeking sunshine, this bright, white, Scandinavian-style abode complete with a clawfoot tub won’t disappoint. Located in the sleepy town of Graton, right in the heart of West Sonoma's wine country, it's only a short drive away from an abundance of popular vineyards.
Take a bottle home with you and relax by the property's solar-heated pool, then dry off in a private outdoor infrared sauna. Don't leave without chatting up the neighbors—they’re metal sculpture artists, florists, jewelry makers, butterfly cultivators, and shamans.
Sonoma, Sonoma County
If you want to stay in the true heart of Sonoma’s wine country, here's your chance. At this sprawling estate, you’ll be greeted with a bottle of wine from the on-property vineyard upon your arrival. The compound itself has everything you’d hope for: breathtaking mountain views, an infinity pool, an indoor/outdoor living room, and acres of privacy.
Stroll down the rows of vines with a glass in-hand, dine al fresco on a wraparound deck, loop popular bike paths, or take a trip into historic downtown Sonoma (the city is home to Buena Vista Winery, California’s oldest winery).
Mendocino, Mendocino County
If getting away from it all and sleeping in a forest is high on your bucket list, this remote cabin surrounded by redwood trees—just miles from the Pacific and historic Mendocino—is the place to do it.
Whether you’re an artist, a nature lover, or just a guy seeking some time off the grid (that is allowed), consider this quiet cabin with a loft bedroom your waiting-to-be-booked sanctuary. Nearby, the Highway 128 Wine Road, a 75-mile drive full of wineries, vineyards, and even more redwoods, awaits.
Albion, Mendocino County
After a long day of winery-hopping, what better way to relax than by a cozy fireplace in this dog-friendly, four-bedroom home away from home? And it gets better: Three of the bedrooms have luxe king-sized beds, and the kitchen comes fully stocked with a new 16-piece knife set, a pizza stone, a slow cooker, a complete set of spices, a grill, an electric moka-style espresso machine, and more.
The water views where the Navarro River meets the Pacific definitely won’t disappoint. If you decide to leave the property, you’ll have easy access to beaches, parks, and scenic Northern California towns.
Napa, Napa County
If you consider Napa the Grand Dame of wine country (and why wouldn’t you?), why not do it right and stay in a renovated 4,000-square-foot estate sitting on nine acres of land overlooking the valley?
You could relax inside by the fireplace and scope out the original wine cellar. Or explore the outdoors, take in the mountainside views, and pick from an olive grove or fruit tree (there are over 12 varieties on the property including lemons, oranges, grapefruit, apples, and avocado). From here, you’re an easy drive away from Napa’s best wineries, restaurants, markets, and more, making day trips easy.
Paso Robles, San Luis Obispo County
Paso Robles is a dreamy California town between San Francisco and Los Angeles, full of wineries, olive groves, breweries, and cycling paths. It's well worth a visit, even more so if you're staying at The Olive House.
This Airbnb practically oozes romance. Spend your days jumping from vineyard to vineyard, then return to a built-in Moroccan-style bed, a private courtyard, an outdoor fireplace, a casita made for two, not to mention a stunning view of the hillsides and, oh yes, a working olive farm. You may never stay in a hotel again.
There’s a reason this posh Pacific Heights apartment has been featured in design magazines: It's good-looking from start to finish, with a polished exterior, a cute balcony overlooking a garden for your morning coffee, high ceilings, and a marble bathroom with a heated towel rack (c’mon, San Francisco can get cold).
Plus, the neighborhood is quiet but provides easy access to the city’s gems: Walk over to the Presidio National Park for a scenic stroll, see a movie at Vogue Theater located on the same block, or take a bus ride to San Francisco's many, many wine bars.
This story originally appeared on Esquire.com. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.