Welcome to San Francisco & the Napa Valley. For travelers seeking life-changing experiences, San Francisco’s romantic beauty, innovative spirit and expressive cultural pulse never cease to inspire all those who visit. Known for its breathtaking scenery, groundbreaking arts and culture, diverse communities, world-class shopping and memorable cuisine – paired, of course, with Napa Valley wines - it’s easy to see why so many people have left their hearts in the City by the Bay.
Just an hour northeast of San Francisco, city lights give way to majestic vistas and warm, sunny days in the Napa Valley – a destination where world-class wines, Michelin-star dining, a vibrant arts community, miles of nature preserves, and a spirit of wellness set a slower pace, inviting you to relax, savor, and restore.
Together San Francisco and the Napa Valley make up North America’s premier food and wine destination. The two areas complement each other and offer the very best in hotels and resorts, world class shopping, award winning dining, cultural diversity, wellness retreats, and most importantly world-class wines.
The Napa Valley and San Francisco emanate a true “town & country” destination. The sophistication of the big city and luxury of the Napa Valley will inspire you and offers a legendary wine tourism experience you’ll never forget.
San Francisco: Measuring 49 square miles, this walk-able city includes landmarks like the Golden Gate Bridge, cable cars, Alcatraz and the largest Chinatown in the United States.
A stroll of the City's streets can lead from Union Square to North Beach to Fisherman's Wharf, Japantown and the Mission District, with intriguing neighborhoods to explore at every turn.
Napa Valley: With more than 400 wineries, 95% of which are family owned and operated, it is the epicenter of fine wine production in the U.S. With scenic beauty all around, visitors can experience the Napa Valley in many ways: by train (the Napa Valley Wine Train), by hot air balloon, on a bike tour, or a wine trolley.
Whether you're seeking an in-town hotel close to nightlife and dining, a luxurious spa getaway, or the peaceful calm of a remote vineyard setting, you'll find a warm, gracious welcome in the Napa Valley.
The San Francisco Bay Area has two major airports: San Francisco International and Oakland International, both only a short distance away from downtown San Francisco and a hour away from the Napa Valley.
San Francisco International Airport – Almost four-dozen major scheduled carriers serve San Francisco International Airport. SFO is 14 miles directly south of downtown on U.S. 101. Drive time to downtown during commuter rush hour is about 40 minutes; at other times, it's about 20 to 25 minutes. BART has service from the airport to downtown and the East Bay.
Oakland International Airport – The Oakland International Airport primarily serves passengers with East Bay destinations. It is 21 miles from downtown on U.S. 880 to U.S. 80. Drive time to downtown during commuter rush hour is about 45 minutes; at other times, it's about 25 to 30 minutes. The airport is also accessible by BART via a shuttle bus.
Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) is a rapid transit system serving the San Francisco Bay Area. The heavy-rail public transit and subway system connects San Francisco with cities in the East Bay and suburbs in northern San Mateo County.
Approximate fare to Downtown San Francisco from SFO is $8.25
Approximate fare to Downtown San Francisco from Oakland is $3.85
Taxis depart from the designated taxi zones located at each airport on the Arrivals/Baggage Claim Level of all terminals. Uniformed taxi coordinators are often stationed at the taxi zones to assist passengers. Taxi drivers are required by airport regulation to accept fares to all Bay Area destinations.
Approximate fares to Downtown San Francisco from SFO is around $60
The easiest way to explore the Napa Valley is by car. You can rent a car and drive yourself, or use a transportation company, such as Beau Wine Tours.
Tourism Figures & Economic Development
On an ongoing basis we track visitor demographics, spending, length of stay and economic contributions to the community to show the true value of travel and why tourism matters in the Napa Valley.
In 2016, the Napa Valley visitor industry generated $1.92 billion in total visitor spending within the county, which represents a 17.5 percent increase since 2014. Most of this spending was generated from local hotel guests who were responsible for $1.34 billion, or 69.9 percent of the total. In 2016, the Napa Valley welcomed a total of 3.5 million visitors, which represents an increase of 6.3 percent from 2014. Tourism is the second largest industry in Napa County, supporting an estimated 13,437 jobs, with a combined payroll of $387 million.
In 2017, the total number of visitors in San Francisco is estimated to have been 25.5 million, up 1.4% from 2016. Since 2013, this figure has grown by 2.6 million visitors.
Total direct visitor spending reached $9.1 billion in 2017, up 1.4% from 2016. These spending estimates include all goods and services purchased directly by visitors while in the city of San Francisco. These spending figures do not include meetings/conventions direct spend.
Conventions, trade shows and group meetings are major contributors to the economic impact of San Francisco’s visitor industry.
Wine Figures & Educational Resources
The most renowned winegrowing region in the U.S. is also one of the smallest and
most diverse in the world:
There are 16 approved AVAs within the Napa Valley AVA
Grape varieties (from 2016 Napa County Crop Report):
More than 34 different wine grape varieties are grow in Napa County
22% of vineyard acreage is planted to white wine grapes and 78% to red wine grapes
Cabernet Sauvignon – 22,868 acres/9,254 hectares (50%)
Chardonnay – 6,445 acres/2,608 hectares (14%)
Merlot – 4,583 acres/1,855 hectares (10%)
Sauvignon Blanc – 2,789 acres/1,193 hectares (6%)
Pinot Noir – 2,789 acres/1,129 hectares (6%)
Zinfandel – 1,317 acres/533 hectares (3%)
Within the San Francisco Bay Area, there are many educational institutions and universities that provide extensive viticulture and enology resources, certificates and degrees.
University of California, Davis
Providing undergraduate degree, graduate degree and certificate programs.
As a viticulture and enology major at UC Davis, you'll benefit not only from our outstanding faculty and laboratory resources, a world-class wine library, but also from our location. The Napa Valley, the nerve center of California's thriving, innovative wine industry, is easily accessible from campus. You may complete internships with some of the area's world-class wineries and research grape cultivation and winemaking at the renowned Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science located right on campus.
Napa Valley College
Providing one-year certificate and two-year Associate of Science (A.S.) degree options.
Courses prepare students for entry-level positions and help current industry employees to advance in their careers. Based on a core of viticulture and wine-making classes, the program offers a variety of options for careers in the industry. Students learn to apply viticulture and winemaking theory for decision-making in actual production situations. College facilities include classroom and laboratory buildings, vineyards, and a teaching winery.
Additionally, San Francisco is home to the San Francisco Wine School, which strives to open up the world of wine to serious wine students everywhere. It helps people of all levels break into the wine industry, advance their career, or simply pursue their passions. Founded by Master Sommelier David Glancy, it is the largest wine school in the US offering the most thorough approach to wine study.