Tired of hitting the same overcrowded wineries in Napa and Sonoma? Skip Napa and Sonoma all together and head over to the Santa Cruz mountains for a less crowded, less expensive, and just as beautiful, some may even say more beautiful, day of winery hopping. Check out our list of 7 must-visit wineries that will check all the boxes.


Picnic People Paradise – Testarossa Winery

Testarossa certainly has one of the largest and most popular picnic areas in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Testarossa is one of the state’s oldest operating tasting rooms and is very spacious. Sit on their terrace with a bottle of wine and enjoy the fantastic South Bay weather. Testarossa also crafts dessert wines that are perfect for an afternoon treat.

!Picnic with wine

Wine Connoisseurs Welcomed – Ridge Vineyards

Ridge Vineyards not only offers a gorgeous view of Silicon Valley but also has world-renowned wines grown on their property. Wine critics from all over the world have praised the wine for decades. If you’re looking for a place to bring the wine snobs of your life, this is the place to visit.


Equestrian Enthusiast – Cooper-Garrod Vineyards

Tucked in the hills of Saratoga, Cooper-Garrod Vineyards is a family-owned winery with all the wines offered grown on the estate. Cooper- Garrod is also home to a large stable that visitors can take a horseback riding lesson, followed by a tasting.


Family Friendly – Martin Ranch Winery

Martin Ranch Winery is located in the Santa Cruz mountains but is often mistaken for its own unique town. They offer both indoor and outdoor tasting areas, a playground for the kids and a lake with a deck built for wine tasting. In addition to wine, they also sell artisan snacks and handmade goodies.


Cabernet Lover – Vidovich Vineyards

Since “Grandpa” Steve Vidovich founded Vidovich Vineyards they have focused on producing high-quality big Cabernets. The wineries tasting room opened in 2017 and has some of the most amazing views of the Bay Area.

Cabernet drinking

History Junkie Heaven – Burrell School Vineyards & Winery

Burrell School Vineyards & Winery has an authentic 1850s schoolhouse to explore. Owner and winemaker, David Moulton, can give an in-depth tour of the schoolhouse, where you can see lesson plans they rediscovered from over a century ago.


For the Views – Loma Prieta Winery

Ocean view and a glass of vino, what else could you ask for? Loma Prieta Winery has a spectacular view of the Santa Cruz coastline from atop the Santa Cruz Mountains. While at Loma Prieta you can picnic, play bocce, and bring the kiddos and furry friends all while sipping on some fabulous wine.

Book you Chariot Charter today and start sippin’.

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