Ever tempted to go jump in a lake? Grab a bottle at a favorite
winery along Highway 128, and cannonball into the watery
wonders of LAKE BERRYESSA, Napa County’s largest lake.
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for kayaking, swimming and fishing. Pleasure Cove Marina
(800/255-5561) offers boat launching, boat and jet ski rentals,
houseboat rentals and boat gasoline, as well as camping options or
BYO equipment and supplies for an extra-affordable day.
Build up a pre-picnic appetite with a hike around the lake’s
perimeter, where at least six easy trails—from 0.1 mile to 2.6
miles—invite you to explore, observe wildlife, and enjoy great
views among the grassy hills dotted with oak and manzanita. Budding
birders should swoop into the visitor center, pick up a trail
map and bird checklist, then venture out to spot ospreys, hawks,
herons, and other species.
Stay: Markley Cove, markleycove.com. Camping around the
lake is a time-honored tradition, as is living the RV life. For a
rustic yet upscale alternative, the Markley Cove Resort Cabins
balance between an outdoorsy escape and comfortable modern
conveniences. All units are pet friendly, so bring your fur baby
along for the adventure. After a long day of hiking and playing in
the lake, watch the sunset over lakefront views and mountain vistas
from your private cabin’s patio. Don’t forget your boat; covered
berths are also available. Be prepared to unplug, as limited wifi is
located only at the main store.
Dine: For casual yet intimate authentic Italian dining, you need
not venture far from the water’s edge. Cucina Italiana (4310 Knoxville
Road, Spanish Flat Village Center, Lake Berryessa) is owned by
Stefano, an Italian expat who infuses every dish with Old World
authenticity. Handcrafted hearty dishes like Veal Scaloppini and
Pollo Marsala incorporate fresh, seasonal local ingredients.
A D V E N T U R E
INTO THE WOODS
Muir Woods, Marin County
GIANT REDWOODS CARESS the sky rather than scraping it at
Marin County’s Muir Woods, the crown jewel of Bay Area sequoia
groves. This year the national monument marks 110 years of hosting
awestruck visitors with its plethora of magnificent old-growth
redwoods. Many of these colossal living ancients tower more
than 260 feet high. Local Congressman and philanthropist William
Kent bought the land and gifted it to the U.S. government.
President Theodore Roosevelt declared it a national monument in
1908. More popular than ever, it hosts residents and visitors who
flock to the monument to gape at the trees and hike the park’s