Turn those California Dreams into weekend warrior reality! California is not only the most populous state in the country, it’s the most geographically diverse. Hop in the car and you can drive to any of these spots (some may take more than a weekend, if you’re driving) and explore castles, wine country, majestic mountains, ski vacations, apple picking, desert delights and more. These are our top ten picks for family road trips you’ve simple got to take while the kids are little.

Wine Country

Wine Country may sound like romantic parent getaway, but it also has loads to offer families. TrainTown in Sonoma and the Epicenter Sports and Entertainment Complex in Santa Rosa are two kid destinations that you can't miss in between the sips. Sign up for a safari and stay the night at Safari West. Grab some delicious grub at The Fremont Diner in Sonoma or Boon Fly Café in Napa. And oh, yeah, there are plenty of wineries that are ready with some grape juice, crayons and lawn games to keep their smallest patrons entertained. There are even kid-friendly eateries and lodging if you are looking to make it a long weekend or even week-long getaway. In other words, you don't have to wait until the wee ones are otherwise occupied for a wine getaway.

For kid-friendly winery options and other must-do activities, read our guide.

photo: Castello Di Amorosa


What’s your favorite California adventure?  Let us know in the comment section!

—Beth Shea, Erin Feher & Meghan Rose