Ready to get away with your love for a romantic weekend in Calaveras Wine Country? Summer is the perfect time to explore 30 tasting rooms, enjoy live music, take in the arts and outdoor recreation. We have showcased perfect itineraries to inspire romance and fun below. Be sure to stop by the Calaveras Wine Information Center at 202 Main Street in Murphys to pickup a tasting room map and some tasting passes! Open Thursday through Sunday 11-5. Be sure to Ironstone Amphitheater and Brice Station for the latest concerts schedules. You can also find our events calendar here.
Day One - Arrive Friday Afternoon for a Full Weekend Away!
Get in the car and head up to Calaveras Wine Country for a weekend to remember. Just a 90 minute drive from the San Francisco Bay Area, this wine region is an easy get away. You may want to pack a cooler for taking home some delicious Calaveras wines and ensure they don’t get too hot along the way or even easier, have the wine sent to you. Arrive to Murphys by 2:00 to enjoy 3-4 tasting rooms before checking into your room. Stop by the Wine Information Center first to get your map and recommendations based on your interests. If you really want to spoil yourselves, checkout the Courtwood Inn or Dunbar House for the most romantic accommodations. Advance reservations are always recommended but you can sometimes find same day deals. Stop by Sierra Hills Market and the Natural Food Store in Murphys to pickup waters and snacks for your room before checkin. You will also find a variety of picnic items, a deli with hot foods, beautiful fresh flowers and chocolates.
If you happen to visit during the first Friday of June through September, head over to Murphys Park for live music. You may want to pickup picnic foods first. If you would rather stay in, get your dinner at Sierra Hills Market or get take out from Firewood as you will find scrumptious burritos, burgers and pizzas to choose from. Cozy up with a bottle of wine or bubbly for a romantic night in.
If you would rather hit the town your first night, make a reservation at The V Restaurant Restaurant and Bar and ask to sit outside in a lovely courtyard with fountains. Sip on craft cocktails while taking in the sounds of fun music and a festive crowd. Share one of their homemade desserts and then take a scroll along the historic streets of downtown Murphys. Arrive to Murphys Park before sunset and cuddle up at the Gazebo next to the creek to whisper sweet nothings.
Day Two: Start the Day Refreshed and Ready to Explore!
Take a morning walk to grab the best coffee in town at Gold Country Roasters 78 Scott Street Murphys, near the Wine Information Center off of Main Street. You will find a Community Bulletin Board with things to do as well as weekend guides.
For the more adventurous couples: Get on the road by 9:00 to drive up to Lake Alpine and take a hike to Inspiration Point, overlooking the lake and surrounding wilderness. You will want to pack a picnic as this is a more challenging hike. Or for a more relaxing hike at 2 miles round trip, enjoy Duck Lake and spot some old log cabins along the way. You may even come across wild flowers in the meadow. You can find fishing, picnicking, hiking, biking at this beautiful space in Calaveras County. If you don’t feel like packing lunch and want to stay the whole day at Lake Alpine, plan to have lunch at the Lake Alpine Lodge. With so many things to do at Lake Alpine, you may want to do some research ahead of time HERE.
If you love Italian food, head down the mountain for dinner and stop in the charming town of Arnold for dinner at Sarafina’s Kitchen. You may hear “That’s Amore” playing in the background as you gaze into each others eyes over local wines and all of your favorite Italian dishes. Want to head back to the hotel and freshen up for dinner first? In this case, take a romantic stroll to dinner before sunset and soak up the beautiful outdoor patio at the Murphys Historic Hotel Restaurant. Dinner is served until 8:30 and it is a good idea to call head for a reservation. Some local favorites include the homemade fried chicken with mashed potatoes and the bone-in Rib Eye with a wedge salad to start. Share a bottle of Calaveras Wine or Bubbly with your meal for an extra special night out together. Oh and don’t forget to check the dessert menu - you will thank us later! Also, if you want to venture out but don’t feel like making the trek up to Lake Alpine, rent some kayaks or paddle boards and explore lakes closer to Murphys like White Pines Lake or Natural Bridges. Sierra Nevada Adventure Company will get you all setup with rentals and maps.
For the couples who love to sleep in and lounge around town: Walk the historic downtown of Murphy where you will find 19 tasting rooms to choose from. For lunch, get a table for two on the patio at Murphys Grille or Grounds Restaurant as both have a variety of local favorites as well as vegetarian options. If you want to go more casual, bring a picnic to Hovey Winery Tasting Room picnic area and purchase some wine to enjoy their outdoor seating space. Located next to Murphys Pour House, you will find lawn games and a fun scene at this stop. Find a complete list of dining options here. Explore the shops during your walking tour of Murphys and maybe play a game of bocce ball behind the Murphys Hotel. Learn about the history of Murphys at the Ironstone Vineyard History Tour offered at 1:30. After working up an appetite, enjoy a mid-afternoon treat at Lavender Ridge Vineyard tasting room where you will find wine and cheeses perfectly paired for each visitor. Or if Olive Oil is your thing, head over to Marisolio Tasting Bar for olive oil tastings. You find a variety of flavors to delight all of your senses. Enjoy your last night in town for dinner at Alchemy Cafe where you can ask for outdoor seating with misters for those hot hot nights with your love. You many even find live music to dance the night away.
Day Three: Explore Vineyards at Wineries on your Way Home!
This is the day to visit the winery properties in Murphys get out into the vineyards. Start at Brice Station Vineyards off of Highway 4 just a short drive up from the downtown. This is a hidden gem with an outdoor music amphitheater and a pottery studio nestled in the forest. Get back on Highway 4 to make your way towards home and stop in at Indian Rock where you can feed the trout and sip on wine while sitting next to the beautiful pond. Just a few minutes away is Locke Vineyards where you two lovebirds can sip wine among dried lavender in the barn or explore the beautiful gardens this winemaking family shares. Your next stop for exploring vineyards will be Ayrael Vieux Winery in Vallecito just 5-10 minutes down the hill from Locke. You will feel like you are in an oasis when sitting in the tea house and touring the vineyards with this husband and wife team. Twisted Oak Winery will be your final stop to take in the views from this stunning vineyard property. Find some fun gifts to for your dear at the wonderful gift shop. By now, you will be ready for lunch and as you make your way further down the mountain, will want to stop in at Camps Restaurant at Greenhorn Creek Resort on the golf course. Share a wood-fired pizza or indulge in a juicy burger. This is truly the perfect place to sit together and reflect on your beautiful time in Calaveras Wine Country.
Be sure to tag some of your most romantic pics at #DrinkCalaveras to inspire other couples ready for a weekend away in Calaveras Wine Country!