Lake County offers a unique perspective to touring wine country
December 9, 2015
Wine tasting and touring is always best when someone else is doing the driving, but it’s even better when they’re driving a luxury limousine, an airplane or a boat.
The Lake County region of wine country is a legendary getaway for scenic excursions—with high-altitude mountain ranges, incomparable natural scenery and the oldest lake in North America—offering remarkable outdoor beauty highlighted by some unconventional yet exhilarating signature wine tours. And it is also the fastest-growing wine region in California with more than 30 wineries, nearly 9,000 acres of vineyards and many magnificent opportunities for wine tasting.
What’s more, the region also offers some memorable wine tours that allow you to take in the scenery like you’ve never seen it before—from the air, the water or the back of your personal luxury limousine. Here are just a few of our favorite options for touring Lake County’s wine country like a boss.
A flyby affair
Soar high above the Mayacamas Mountains, Clear Lake and the wine country vineyards with a tour from Crazy Creek Air Adventures. Available in both glider aircrafts and vintage biplanes, tours are operated by highly qualified pilots who’ll give you your choice of a relaxing “mild ride” or a looping, daredevil “wild ride.” You’ll see more than just vineyards and mountains when soaring high above Lake County, as the region is dotted with dormant volcanoes and geothermal steam clouds. And Lake County gets less fog than the surrounding wine country counties of Napa and Sonoma, making this the perfect sightseeing destination for your first wine-country flyby.
Crazy Creek Air Adventures also offers lessons for those who’d like to learn to fly a glider. Now that’s awesome.
Lie back in a luxury limousine
The white-glove treatment is waiting at the Limousine Connection in Kelseyville or Lake County Limousine in Lakeport, both specializing in Lake County wine tours. Sit back and enjoy a trip through wine country in a spacious luxury limousine with all the amenities and plenty of capacity for large groups.
The drivers are extremely knowledgeable about Lake County wineries, the wineries’ history and the cultural canvas of wine country in general. If you want a refined and world-class tour of wine country, it’s not a stretch to say that these luxurious chauffeurs offer opulent comfort at a magnificent value.
See it by sea
The folks at Frontier Wine Tours provide a unique roster of wine-country adventures, including wine tours that offer bald-eagle watching or rides in a mule-drawn covered wagon. But their water tours really make waves, with boat tours of Lake County’s wildlife wonders like Clear Lake and Cache Creek.
Frontier Wine Tours’ Eyes of the Wild Wildlife and Scenic Pontoon Boat Tours offer a customized pontoon tour of magnificent Clear Lake, plus trips to three wineries or tasting rooms of your choice. Or if you prefer to do your own paddling, the Shady Acres Kayak Tour starts on the waters of Cache Creek and wraps up with trips to the three Lower Lake wineries of your choosing. Or perhaps a mule-drawn wagon tour is more your speed. The Eleven Roses Ranch Tour is a splendid agricultural tour that features rare wildflowers, topped off with a chuckwagon BBQ and complimentary tastings of award-winning Lake County wines.
Six Sigma Ranch tours
One specifically unique tour that we’d like to highlight is the Pinzgauer tour at Six Sigma Ranch in Lower Lake, where guests can explore the historic ranch in an all-terrain Pinzgauer, a military utility vehicle named after the prized Austrian horse breed.
The tour includes a visit to the high-elevation vineyard site—the Diamond Mine Vineyard—and is priced at just $10 per person (waived with the purchase of wine). The Pinzgauer can hold up to 10 people and tours take place on Saturdays only, at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m., weather permitting.
Long known as the part of wine country without all the traffic, Lake County wineries can be even more enjoyable to tour from a boat, plane or limousine. You’ll see natural wonders exceptional for even northern California and your tour guides will offer insights to expand your understanding of and love for wine country. Make plans to visit Lake County and all of its magnificent wineries, but opt to see them from a beautiful and truly original perspective.