Wine enjoyed in California

Cycling, Macs Adventure

Napa Harvest Season: The best time to visit Napa Valley by bicycle

3 Jul , 2018  

If tasting and riding to some of the world’s best wines and wineries right where they are grown and crafted doesn’t persuade you, read on for three more reasons to bike Napa Valley this fall.

1. Napa Valley fall colors.

With a mix of roads combined to connect the dots from one charming town to the next, you won’t go a day without thinking, “Wow, this road was made for cycling!”

Hannah cycles California

Hannah enjoying California’s roads by bike

On paved surfaces, gentle grades, and rural roads, there is just enough climbing and descending to give you a great sense of accomplishment at the end of the day.

Riding around Napa in the fall comes with the added bonus of riding through California’s spectacular autumn colors. As the vineyards and redwoods shift from lush greens to vibrant reds, yellows and oranges, you are in for a treat when cycling during this time of year’s longer days and golden rays!

Fall colors in California

The colors turn warm and spectacular!

2. Bountiful harvest.

The farm-to-table movement is stronger in California than nearly anywhere else I’ve traveled, and you won’t have a hard time finding fresh, unique, seasonal, and creative cuisine. For me, bike touring is almost equal parts about the biking and the re-fueling; a destination becomes that much more memorable if the food is on par with the route! Try dinner at The Farmstead in St. Helena, and for a special occasion, Single Thread Farms in Healdsburg (reservations required at Single Thread).

Late summer, early fall, is when grapes are harvested in Napa, so it won’t be rare to see locals picking grapes or smell the sweet scent of wine fermenting this time of year.

As you work up an appetite, make sure to take advantage of the fun harvest festivals in town. Full of lively music, art, crafts and of course wine and food pairings, enjoy daily festivities held in each town’s square. Make sure to try your foot at grape-stomping, a traditional method of winemaking!

3. The weather – 60s & 70s.

California spans many climatic zones, but Sonoma and Napa Counties sit far enough inland to avoid the coastal fog, yet close enough to the Pacific Ocean to benefit from its moderating effect. September, October and November are the best times to visit Napa Valley as these months offer ideal riding temperatures in the 60s and 70s, warm afternoons and cool evenings and mornings.

Napa Valley autumn vineyards

Perfect pedalling conditions.

So when making plans this fall, come to Napa Valley’s harvest season. With endless wine, food, festivities and like-minded cyclists, it’s an active epicurean’s dream come true.


Find out more about Macs Adventure’s biking itineraries in California here on macsadventure.com. Don’t hesitate to contact the team with any questions too. Email [email protected].

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Hannah Lafleur By