Next Stop: Napa Valley

Napa Valley wine country mountain hillside vineyard growing crops for grape harvest and winery winemaking. Rows of lush, green grapevines ripen in cultivated agricultural farm fields glowing in sunset.

The couple that sweats together stays together. While that’s never been proven, working out does lift your mood thanks to the rush of endorphins. Combine that with the delicious wine and food of California’s Napa Valley, and you’ve got a good-vibes-only getaway in store. Because you want more out of a vacay than just lying about and venturing out to see landmarks, don’t you? In fact, research from Hotels.com shows that 79 percent of vacationers keep fit when on holiday.

Ready to sweat and sip? Pack up both your workout gear and vacay wardrobe, and set forth to Napa with this itinerary.

Where to stay
Located by the iconic Grape Crusher statue, the Meritage Resort & Spa has everything you need right on property should you get too blissed out to venture out. There’s the Tuscan-inspired Siena restaurant (order the fresh pasta), the vineyard (which you can stroll to take in the views of the valley), a six-lane bowling alley, and, of course, the Trinitas Cellars tasting room, which is located in the underground Estate Cave. Soon, there’ll also be 145 new guests rooms and an outdoor venue, which will host concerts and events—although the beyond cozy beds might be hard to tear yourselves away from.

Where to cycle
Combine your workout with your love for wine with an outing with Napa Valley Bike Tours, who can plan your cycling tour from winery to winery for tastings. They can take into account your desired intensity level—we opted for easy breezy cruising with plenty of stops for photos for our jaunt from Yountville to Saint Helena. At our last time at Rutherford Ranch Winery, we had a tasting, followed by a delightful picnic lunch. While staying at Meritage, take advantage of not having to drive and enjoy a tasting here (where you must try the Trinitas chardonnay with the unique and addictive chili lime-tequila-pumpkin-seed-tortilla brittle). If it’s views you’re both after, on a clear day, make the drive to Sterling Vineyards and take their aerial tram brings you up to the winery. The design of which is inpsired by Greek monasteries. Take in the 360-degree views of the Valley from your perch before enjoying more wine and some incredible cheese and charcuterie (which you will want to indulge in—book that tour upgrade).

Where to get zen
The rolling hills of Napa and the serenity of the valley will make even the least likely yogi want to practice. Before your trip, surf the net to see what special yoga events are taking place at the wineries (Robert Mondavi and Benzinger Family Winery have both hosted yoga events in the past, for example). Our practice brought us into the Estate Cave at the Meritage—think Game of Thrones in ambiance only much more cozy and luxurious.

Where to hike
Head into the woods in Napa Valley for a hike to get your dose of forest bathing. At Moore Creek Park, the trails will reward you with views of Lake Hennessey, and given the easy level of difficulty, you might want to make it a trail run; you want that runner’s high, don’t you? If you’re looking to make a day of it and pack a picnic (pick up provisions at Yountville Deli) and take your time soaking up the vistas here, or at Alston Park, Napa Valley Vine Trail and Kennedy Park.

Where to relax and recover
Any fitness buff worth their Lycra knows that rest is a crucial component of any regimen. Putting yourselves into the very capable hands of the massage therapists at Spa Terra will help to bring some relief to your tired muscles while the quiet time will help you refresh mentally. For a treatment you won’t find everywhere, book yourselves into Calistoga Spa Hot Springs for a mud bath. What to expect: you get down to your birthday suit, rinse off and then soak in a volcanic ash mud bath (expect it to be thick and warm). After you shower off the mud, you relax in a mineral whirlpool bath before a quick stop in the eucalyptus steam room. The treatment is said to benefit your skin and help with muscle aches and pains.

Karen Kwan

Karen Kwan

Karen Kwan is a freelance writer based in Toronto. Her work has appeared in Flare, Elle Canada and ElleCanada.com, Glow, Metro, Huffington Post Canada, Travelife and Travel + Escape. She also runs her blog, HealthandSwellness.com, where she writes about health, beauty, fitness and lifestyle.

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