Top Things to do in St. Helena

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Things To Do

Top Things to do in St. Helena

By Abby E. Wilson March 21, 2024

Known as Napa Valley’s Main Street for its ritzy flare, chic boutiques, pioneering wineries, and contemporary art galleries, St. Helena is a dreamlike destination for epicures the world over.

Getting to this wine lovers’ paradise is an easy 90-minute drive from both San Francisco and Sacramento, California—a sophisticated-yet-charming spot situated between Calistoga and Yountville, just 18 miles north of Downtown Napa.

Regardless of the time of year you visit, you’ll find plenty of sights and activities to explore in St. Helena. So, when you’re ready to discover all the top spots to get pampered, cultured, wined, and dined in the viticultural Napa Valley hotspot that is St. Helena, here’s our guide to the best things to do.

Visit a Winery

Whether you want to visit a winery, do a wine tasting in one of Napa’s many tasting rooms, stroll through the vineyards, or take a Wine & Dine tour, historic St. Helena is a prime place to do it.

Photos courtesy of Beringer Vineyards

Perhaps one of Wine Country’s most famous wineries, Beringer Vineyards, owned by Treasury Wine Estates, is the oldest continuously operating winery in the Napa Valley, founded in 1876. Tour their historic Rhine House, then reserve a private wine tasting at St. Helena’s gorgeous Fantesca Estate & Winery, located a short drive out of town in the Spring Mountain AVA. With its stunning surroundings, intimate tasting experience, and top-notch wines, it’s no wonder this family-owned winery is one of the best wineries in Spring Mountain to visit.

Fantesca Estate & Winery
Photo Courtesy of Fantesca Estate & Winery

Back in town, Duckhorn is another great option. While you’ll love strolling the beautiful gardens and enjoying the vineyard views from the wrap-around veranda, a visit is all about the renowned wines. And for the Port lovers, Prager Winery & Port Works is a mustn’t miss destination in the heart of Napa Valley. From Tawny Ports to White Ports, it’s the next best thing to tasting in Portugal.

Get Cultured

Experience contemporary art outside of San Francisco in a world-class wine setting at Napa Valley’s HALL Winery. Recognized for its iconic 35-foot chrome rabbit named Bunny Foo Foo leaping out of the vineyards at its entrance, St. Helena’s HALL Winery offers signature tours in its award-winning modern art gallery.

Photos courtesy of HALL Winery

When you’re finished sipping HALL’s storied Cabernets, take a tour of the Robert Louis Stevenson Museum, just off Main Street in downtown St. Helena. Loved by bibliophiles across the globe, Robert Louis Stevenson was a Scottish writer best known for his novels, Treasure Island and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. His namesake museum in downtown St. Helena offers the world’s largest collection of Stevensoniana on public display.

Get Pampered

After a long day of Napa wine tasting, unwind with a soothing facial, therapeutic massage, or healing soak with detoxifying beverage in hand at the Spa Alila at the Alila Napa Valley hotel on Main Street in downtown St. Helena. Not in the mood for a rub-down? You and your crew can also book private yoga experiences, personalized meditation sessions, and astrology readings at this adults-only Wine Country oasis in Napa Valley.

Overnight guests at Meadowood Napa Valley can visit the award-winning spa for therapeutic massages, organic facials, body scrubs, and other wellness offerings, such as sound therapy, reiki, and mindfulness. Guests can also book the private Tree House Retreat room with a gorgeous hammered copper tub for sumptuous custom baths—milk, mustard, or pure sea salt.

Enjoy a Winery Food Pairing

Snack and sip yourself to a state of blissful oblivion with some of the best food and wine pairings you’ve had all year in St. Helena, Napa, and beyond.
Clif Family Winery and organic farm is one of Napa Valley’s hidden gems. Each week, the Clif team harvests crops from their five fruitful acres and uses them to create seasonal dishes for their on-site food truck and culinary curiosities for their wine tasting menus. There’s even a Farm Elixir Mocktail Flight for a non-alcoholic food pairing in the heart of Wine Country.

Clif Family Winery
Photo Courtesy of Clif Family Winery

Hop on over to Merryvale Vineyards Napa Valley for a selection of hearty, delicious food and wine pairings. Book a delightful brunch with their Seasonal Quiche & Wine Pairing, lunch with the Vino & Pizza Experience, or a hearty Burger Butler Experience with wine and burgers brought in from St. Helena’s famous Gott’s Roadside.

Trinchero Winery is another St. Helena favorite offering delectable culinary bites paired with their signature wines. This elegant experience includes a tour of their Napa Valley winery and vineyards, as well as the barrel room.

Eat at an Award-Winning Restaurant

You don’t have to be in San Francisco or another big city to dine at Michelin-quality restaurants with renowned chefs. Napa Valley, including quaint St. Helena, is inundated with award-winning eateries and institutions, such as the famed Culinary Institute of America at Greystone.

Acacia House
Photo Courtesy of Acacia House

Grab your girlfriends and head to the Acacia House restaurant in Alila Napa Valley’s restored Georgian farmhouse—the perfect setting for a breezy Wine Country brunch on its white-pillared wraparound veranda. It also serves up some of the best dinner fare in the area.

Celebratory, family-style California cooking is on full display at The Charter Oak restaurant in St. Helena, just down the road from Yountville and Calistoga. Led by chef Christopher Kostow (of the former three-Michelin-starred The Restaurant at Meadowood), The Charter Oak serves brunch and all-day fare with crops from its 3.5-acre culinary garden in St. Helena.

Conclusion

From delicious eats to visual treats, St. Helena has plenty of activities to delight all the senses. Inspired to start planning your trip? Read out picks for the best restaurants in St. Helena, the top wineries to visit, and the most luxurious hotels in Napa (two of which are located in St. Helena).