Temecula, California located between Los Angeles and San Diego has many attractions including great golfing, an old town where you can shop for antiques. There is also Pechanga Casino, and a beautiful wine country, with 31 award wining wineries. Today we will focus on wine country and the many places to go and explore whether it be wine tasting, flying in a hot air balloon, or going out to a great dinner.
The City of Temecula is located off Interstate 15 in southwest Riverside County. To get to wine country from San Diego take 15 north to Rancho California Road and head east (right turn). To get here from LA and Orange Counties take 91 east to 15 south and exit Rancho California Road and head east about 4 miles and you are in wine country. Most of the wineries are off of Rancho California, however there are around seven wineries off of De Portolo Road and others in and around the area. See map.
The 2012 Temecula Balloon and Wine Festival is the weekend of June 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. Come on out and experience wine country first hand.
If you would like to catch a hot air balloon ride plan to be in the area early as hot air balloons typically take off around 6 to 6:30am in the summer and between 6:30 and 7:30am in the winter. If you do not feel like driving that early consider getting a room at a hotel or a bed and breakfast, then you can explore Temecula all weekend. I have included a list of hotels from the area below. There are several reputable hot air balloon companies to choose from. All fly FAA inspected air envelopes and all have impeccable safety records. Here are some links to some of the better known companies; California Dreamin, D&D, Magical Adventure, and Grape Escape. If you go plan to go for an hour ride over some beautiful sites and bring your camera as you will undoubtedly want photos of this adventure.
Head back to wine country for afternoon wine tasting where you can sample the area’s many offerings for around $5-$15 dollars, some wineries even let you keep the souvenir glass. If you have a large group consider renting a limo or shuttle so no one has to worry about driving and everyone can have a great time sharing the moment. Here are some links to area shuttles; Sunset Limo, Grapeline, and others.
After a long day, what better way to finish up than with an award winning meal at one of the many winery restaurants most of which have a French or Mediterranean influence. Here are some links to some great wine country restaurants:
1. Thornton Winery Cafe Champagne
2. Creekside Grille at Wilson Creek
3. Meritage Restaurant at Callaway Vineyard
4. The Pinnacle Restaurant at Faulkner Winery
5. The Restaurant at Ponte
6. The Vineyard Rose Restaurant at South Coast Winery Resort ans Spa
As you can see you don’t have travel far to have an enjoyable time out with friends and family. Temecula is less than two hours drive from most of Southern California, yet when you spend time here you will feel like you have been to a wine region far from here with many surprises around every corner.
Thanks again for taking the time to read my blog, I hope you enjoy it and I hope that you have a chance to go and see these places firsthand. As always stay tuned and drive safe. Thank you.