8 Unexpected Things to Do in St. Helena

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The quaint town of St. Helena is known for the wonderful wineries, fabulous restaurants, and darling shops along picturesque Main Street, and you’ll soon discover that there are a great many interesting things to do beyond the usual winery and restaurant visits. Venture off the beaten path with our list of fun activities to enjoy during your stay in St. Helena.

Your Own Private Tour

Image Source: Knight Wine Tours
Knight Wine Tours
1241 Adams St., Ste. 1013
St. Helena, CA 94574
(707) 738-4500
TripAdvisor: 5 stars, 141 reviews

Owner Stan Knight customizes private day trips that focus on the Napa Valley’s best boutique and family-owned wineries. Stan, who has 21 years of experience living and working in the Napa Valley, is one of the nicest people you can meet, and also happens to be an expert on the area. Schedule a tour with Knight Wine Tours for a memorable custom-tailored itinerary. Insider tip: Discuss your preferences for lunch with Stan: he will help you to plan a gourmet picnic in a scenic spot, or will suggest one of the valley’s finest restaurants.

Unwind in the Town Park

Image Source: Yelp
Crane Park
360 Crane Ave.
St. Helena, CA 94574

For lovers of the great outdoors, beautiful and sprawling Crane Park offers a multitude of recreational features throughout its 12 acres, including tennis courts, bocce ball areas, horseshoe pits, picnic grounds, and a children’s playground. Take advantage of the St. Helena Farmers’ Market hosted at the park on Friday mornings from May until September. Insider tip: Sunshine Foods, a local favorite, is a charming market with local produce and a fabulous selection of cheeses, just a short walk up Main Street.

One of the Oldest Buildings in the Napa Valley

Image Source: Yelp
The Old Mill
Bale Grist Mill Historic State Park
3369 St. Helena Hwy. North
St. Helena, CA 94574
(707) 963-2236
TripAdvisor: 4.5 stars, 45 reviews

Bale Grist Mill Historic State Park is named for the old mill which was built here in the 1800s; today, it’s the last surviving water-powered mill in California. Take the tour of The Old Mill to learn the fascinating history of the property from tour guide/storytellers who offer demonstrations. The park also offers hiking trails and picnic grounds. Insider tip: The mill is still in use today, and you can purchase bags of grain that were milled here.

Wine Tasting in a Cave

Image Source: Yelp
Anderson’s Conn Valley
680 Rossi Road
St. Helena, CA 94574
(707) 963-8600
TripAdvisor: 5 stars, 13 reviews

Anderson’s Conn Valley is known for its small-production Cabernet Sauvignon and Bordeaux blends, as well as Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay. The winery is appointment only and features an intimate and atmospheric reserve tasting held in the cool, oak-scented winery caves. For an educational experience, schedule to do the cave tasting and food pairing with the winemaker. Insider tip: Ask if the winery’s cult favorite, Ghost Wine, is available to taste.

An Urban Art Gallery in the Napa Valley

Image Source: Christopher Hill Gallery
Christopher Hill Gallery
1235 Main St.
St. Helena, CA 94574
(707) 963-0272
TripAdvisor: 4 stars, 4 reviews

Christopher Hill is a relaxed gallery that features 20th and 21st century artists in and 1,800-square-foot space. The eclectic , contemporary collection rotates frequently and boasts exhibitions from Richard Schloss, Jeremy Mann, and Nobuhito Tanaka. Insider tip: The gallery is just a block away from Archetype restaurant, a favorite for fabulous farm-to-table wine country cuisine.

A Glimpse into the Life of a Writer

Image Source: Robert Louis Stevenson Museum
Robert Louis Stevenson Museum
1490 Library Ln.
St. Helena, CA 94574
(707) 963-3757
TripAdvisor: 4 stars, 18 reviews

Robert Louis Stevenson once wrote, “Wine is bottled poetry,” so it only stands to reason that a museum dedicated to the Treasure Island author would be located in a place like St. Helena. Housed in a wing of the St. Helena Public Library, the Robert Louis Stevenson Museum hosts the world’s largest collection of Stevenson memorabilia: the Scottish writer spent his honeymoon in the Napa Valley, and lived out some of his last years in the Bay Area, so the collection commemorates this (adopted) local legend with keepsakes and furniture collected during his lifetime of adventures travelling the world. Insider tip: The museum is only two short blocks away from Napa Valley Roasting Company’s storefront. Visit their espresso bar to get a shot of java, post-museum.

A Relaxing Day at the Spa

Image Source: Yelp
Health Spa Napa Valley
1030 Main St.
St. Helena, CA 94574
(707) 967-8800
TripAdvisor: 4.5 stars, 12 reviews

Rest and relaxation are on the menu at Health Spa Napa Valley. The property, which has a fitness center as well as spa facilities, is dedicated to well-rounded wellness, so day passes are available for access to the gym and steam room, while the tranquil day spa specializes in treatments like massages and body wraps. And because this is the Napa Valley, the spa even serves Mumm sparkling wine to patrons. Insider tip: Splurge on the Harvest Signature Mud Bath, a relaxing treatment made from a detoxifying and hydrating blend of Napa Valley grapeseed mud and French clay. Your body will thank you.

Explore by Bike

Image Source: Yelp
St. Helena Cyclery
1156 Main St.
St. Helena, CA 94574
(707) 963-7736

St. Helena is a central starting point to Napa Valley excursions, many of which are well-worth seeing from the seat of a bicycle. The folks at St. Helena Cyclery will rent one out for your ride north to Calistoga or south to nearby Yountville. Not to worry: St. Helena Cyclery will help you with directions and route planning, granting even more of an opportunity to take in the scenery and beauty of Wine Country. Insider tip: Save some time, and have St. Helena Cyclery deliver the bike to you.

St. Helena is an enticing destination for visitors to the Napa Valley. The fantastic wineries in the area are not to be missed, but there are many hidden gems just waiting to be discovered. Head off the beaten path and create an itinerary of unique and compelling activities sure to create lifelong memories.