By: Megan Rothey
Imagine yourself starting your morning off with a challenging, breathtaking hike followed by a soak in a mineral pool or being shoulders deep in a luxurious mud bath, and ending the day sipping quality wines paired perfectly with your crispy duck confit and pan-roasted snapper.
That probably sounds like a vacation right out of a European travel guide, but all this and more can be found right here in Calistoga. Check out these 8 activities that you don’t want to miss out on when visiting the area.
Rest and Relaxation:
1. Spa Solage
Spa Solage is the perfect place to go for a variety of treatments. It’s great for couples, groups, and those looking for some peaceful individual treatment.
You can start or end your treatment with a hot eucalyptus steam and soak in the 103℉ jetted mineral pool. Their signature mudslide contains a three-part session of an essential oil-infused mud application, a mineral-rich soak, and a deep-relaxation in one of their state-of-the-art sound chairs equipped with healing vibrations and harmonic music. The spa also includes a variety of massage options, facials and skincare enhancements, and even a private meditation session to repair and rejuvenate the mind.
2. Indian Springs
Indian Springs in Calistoga is a Bohemian spa focused on the calming effect of mud, water, and Buddha. Their pure and natural mud bath treatments include volcanic ash that is mined on-site, hand-sifted, and mixed with mineral water from their thermal geysers. Exfoliate your whole body in an all-natural sugar or Ancient Sea Salt scrub, relax tired and sore muscles with a simple, but deep massage, and find quiet refuge at the Buddha Pond complete with a geyser-def meditation pond, palm trees, gardens, and an outdoor fireplace lounge.
3. Petrified Forest
Petrified Forest is celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2016! This moderate walking tour for beginners offers a ½ mile guided scenic overview of Mt. St. Helena. Enjoy the native trees, wildflowers, and the 100 foot-high ash wall of volcanic material.
4. Oat Hill Mine Trail
Oat Hill Mine Trail is great for both beginner and advanced hikers. This trail spans 8.3 miles with an elevation change of 1,500 feet and follows an old stagecoach route between Calistoga and the western end of Aetna Springs Road in Pope Valley. Beginners can cut off at the halfway point and return to Calistoga making it a 4 mile trip, and those looking to push themselves can continue on to Pope Valley and utilize the shuttle to return. It is a well-maintained trail, though a little rocky, and good hiking shoes are recommended.
Solbar is a Michelin-rated restaurant specializing in the local and seasonal flavors of Northern California. Indulge in both lighter, healthier fare like a spring vegetable chopped salad with an avocado-poblano puree and a wide selection of fresh seafood.
6. Bouchon Bakery
Bouchon Bakery, located about 30 minutes southeast, is your best bet for a flaky breakfast croissant or to satiate a sweet tooth. Owned by the only American-born chef to hold multiple three-star michelin ratings, Bouchon Bakery’s menu boasts lattes, eclairs, croissants, and macarons.
7. Napa Valley Wine Trolley and Castle Tour
Napa Valley Wine Trolley and Castle Tour is the best way to mix a little sight-seeing in with your wine tasting. Visit three premium wineries in northern Napa Valley while traveling in a motorized replica of an open-air San Francisco cable car, enjoy a gourmet picnic lunch in one of the vineyards, and tour the medieval-style Italian Castello di Amorosa.
8. Swanson Vineyards
At Swanson Vineyards you can schedule a group tasting in their quirky, yet elegant red Salon or explore the delightfully whimsical Sip Shoppe for some reinvented rituals of fine wine.
Experience Calistoga Like Never Before
From wine to world-class spas, there’s a whole new side to Calistoga you’ve never experienced before!
Images courtesy of Solbar/Solage Calistoga.
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