Visiting a winery doesn’t have to mean leaving the kids at home. Several wineries in the Bay Area and beyond welcome children with games, activities, music and even swimming. Here are some fun options:
Benzinger Family Winery – The whole family can learn about this winery’s unusual biodynamic farming practices inspired by the Austrian philosopher Rudolf Steiner. Take a tour and explore the winemaking facilities and caves. 1883 London Ranch Road, Glen Ellen. 888-490-2739.
Castello di Amorosa – Explore a castle built in 13th century Tuscan-style with the same techniques used by medieval builders. A self-guided tour costs $30 for adults, including access to the main bar and Knight’s Hall or $20 for those ages 5-20, including grape juice. 4045 St. Helena Highway, Calistoga. 707-967-6272.
Charles R Vineyards – You can have a picnic and listen to live music or just enjoy the peaceful sounds of nature. 8195 Crane Ridge Road, Livermore. 925-454-3040.
Chouinard Vineyard and Winery – Check the schedule for fun events, including the Father’s Day music celebration and the Christmas party. The shady grounds are a great spot to spread out a picnic. 33853 Palomares Road, Castro Valley. 510-582-9900.
Cline Cellars – View the scale models of the original 21 California missions created for the 1939 World’s Fair. You can bring the kids through the garden and look at the two resident donkeys. 24737 Arnold Drive, Highway 121, Sonoma. 800-546-2070. clinecellars.com.
Francis Ford Coppola Winery – According to the winery’s website, Coppola had sympathized for years with kids he saw playing at the fountain at Inglenook Winery wanting to jump in. So he decided to give them a place to swim. The winery has two pools totaling 3,600-square-feet. Cabins can be rented and come with a shower, playing cards and a copy of Zoetrope All-Story Magazine. 300 Via Archimedes, Geyserville. 707-857-1471.
Garre Winery – Two bocce ball courts help make this a family favorite. 7986 Tesla Road, Livermore. 925-371-8200. .
Ironstone Vineyards - This winery has a popular summer concert series that attracts lots of families. This year’s lineup includes Ziggy Marley and Hank Williams Jr. 1894 6 Mile Road, Murphys. 209-728-1251.
Landmark Vineyards – Take free horse-drawn carriage tours that cover viticulture practices, winemaking techniques and Sonoma wine history. 101 Adobe Canyon Road, Kenwood. Then enjoy your picnic on the lawn by the pond. 707-833-0053. landmarkwine.com.
Larson Family Winery – Bring your own picnic, use the bocce court and play on the large lawn. Then learn about the five generations who have farmed this ranch. 23355 Millerick Road, Sonoma. 707-938-3031. larsonfamilywinery.com.
McGrail Vineyards – Play some bocce on the winery’s turf bocce courts or attend one of the many scheduled events, including yoga, tastings with s’mores and concerts. 5600 Greenville Road, Livermore. 925-215-0717.
Preston Farm and Winery – Walk through the gardens, visit the sheep and chickens, play bocce ball and have a picnic. 9282 W. Dry Creek Road, Healdsburg. 707-433-3372. .
Retzlaff Vineyards – Families with kids (and dogs!) Can picnic at this winery. Spread out a lunch under the shade of 100-year-old pepper trees. Make sure to supervise your children and keep Fido on a leash. 1356 S. Livermore Ave., Livermore. 925-447-8941.
Rock Wall Wine Company – Kids can play on the large paved backyard and are welcome at the outdoor picnic tables. Coloring activities are sometimes offered. You can get pizza, sandwiches and more at Scolari’s restaurant. 2301 Monarch St., Alameda. 510-522-5700.
Sterling Vineyards – The main attraction is the aerial tram which offers incredible views as it whisks you to the hilltop winery. Cost is $35 for adults including tasting for those over 21; $20 for ages 3-20. 1111 Dunaweal Lane, Calistoga. 800-726-6136.