Wine and wellness don’t always go hand in hand, but the two experiences are far from mutually exclusive and nowhere is the growing trend of combining them more evident than in the Santa Ynez Valley.
Studies suggest that moderate wine consumption can lead to a healthier heart, strengthen bones, sharpen minds, and even help protect against some cancers. And with more than 100 wineries, the Santa Ynez Valley has much to offer. Likewise, the benefits of engaging in wellness activities have been suggested to include positive impacts on our physical, social, mental, emotional, and spiritual health.
But the health benefits of a visit to the Santa Ynez Valley go far beyond the world-class wines that the region’s soils nourish, or a few gratuitous wellness tips. From a culinary culture steeped in the farm-to-table movement, to unique activities such as grape spa treatments and vineyard yoga, to endless outdoor pursuits, wine and wellness are ingrained in the culture of the Santa Ynez Valley and there are ample ways to make both a part of any visit.
Here are just a few highlights:
Healing Reins: What better way to enjoy the therapeutic nature of horseback riding and the health benefits of wine tasting than to combine the two in the form of the Estelle Ranch and Vineyards Ride & Wine tour from Vino Vaqueros.
Farm-To-Fork: Many local restaurants source their ingredients from local farms, ranches, and other purveyors, including Los Olivos Wine Merchant & Café which grows produce for the restaurant at its own 4-acre certified organic Café Farm.
Spaaaah: The Earth & Sky Couples Treatment at The Spa at Chumash Casino Resort starts with a crushed grape and essential oil body buff, and includes a warm mineral mud body paint, a soak in the couples tub, a body butter massage, and a wild rose mask for the hands.
Re-Cycle: Whether you’re interested in doing an easy five miles with the family, 50 miles through rolling vineyards, or a multi-day tour of wine country, the Santa Ynez Valley is a cyclist’s nirvana and everything you need can be found at Dr. J’s Bicycle Shop or Santa Barbara Wine Country Cycling Tours.
Take A Hike: Much of the beauty of the Santa Ynez Valley is found in the mountains that surround it. Specifically, the San Rafael Mountains to the north and the Santa Ynez Mountains to the south. From vineyard-to-vineyard hikes and scenic strolls along the shores of Lake Cachuma, to more challenging excursions with rewarding vistas on Figueroa Mountain and Gaviota Peak, there are hundreds of miles of trails to explore in the Santa Ynez Valley.
Hyper-Local: At the popular Industrial Eats restaurant and butcher shop in Buellton, nearly everything on the restaurant’s menu is sourced from California’s central coast. The menu features everything from oysters, duck, and rabbit, to steaks, chicken, and even coastal sea urchin, complemented by fresh preserves, pâtés, cheeses, and handmade bacon, while the two-day Hog Butchering Series is an immersive “roll-up-your-sleeves” program that covers cutting, casing, and curing using pigs from Jake O’Francis of Valley Piggery.
Ohm Away From Home: Vineyard Yoga SYV connects yoga enthusiasts with the natural world through its yoga classes that take place in the serenity and solitude of local vineyards, followed by wine tasting. “I love teaching my vineyard yoga classes because it allows visitors to experience the beauty of our local wineries in a new way,” said Cori Lassahn, owner of Vineyard Yoga SYV. “It’s the perfect backdrop for yoga because it offers relaxation and rejuvenation, and there’s no better feeling than letting your body sink into the earth in the warm sun as rows of grapevines come into focus.”
Planning a relaxing wellness wine vacation to the Santa Ynez Valley is simple at visitsyv.com, where visitors can research events and attractions, book lodging and activities, compare the best wineries in santa ynez valley and create a custom itinerary with the click of a mouse.
About VisitSYV.com: Visit Santa Ynez Valley provides listings of the best Santa Ynez wineries, best places to eat in Solvang, Santa Ynez hotels and inns, and things to do in Santa Ynez Valley. Visit the website at www.VisitSYV.com for complete travel and visitor services. “Like” the Facebook page for ideas on planning Santa Ynez vacations. Email info@VisitSYV.com for help planning your next vacation in the Santa Ynez Valley.