Plan your visit to Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country for food and wine, arts and culture, and unique harvest-themed activities as autumn’s cool mornings and evenings, changing colors, and glittering golden sunsets bring about the most beautiful, amber-toned ambiance to the popular fall destination. The season comes alive this harvest with a variety of must-see events including Temecula Valley Wine Month in September, as well as three entertaining festivals (Big Horse Harvest Festival, Ralph Love Plein Air Festival, and Temecula Greek Festival) that round out the unique opportunities. Visitors to the region who book 2-3 nights, Sunday through Thursday, stay will enjoy the season’s best with the bonus of smaller crowds and more intimate experiences with local artisans.
Wine Month and wine events
September brings Temecula Valley Wine Month to the region, and Temecula is ready to uncork its best bottles for the event. Throughout the month, visitors can enjoy live entertainment, wine tasting with the SIP Temecula Passport, tours through wine country, food and drink pairings at local restaurants with the Crush on Temecula Wines Restaurant Month for Wine, and so much more. Sample the Temecula harvest sip by sip at CRUSH Wine & Culinary Showcase, a one-day event featuring 30-plus member wineries, live entertainment, and artisan food bites from local restaurants. CRUSH is scheduled for Sept. 30 and will be held at Monte De Oro Winery.
The 27th Annual Temecula Wine Country Harvest Celebration will feature a single day of wine-tasting and harvest activities with included transportation to eight of the region’s favorite wineries. Barrel samples, new releases, and popular favorites will be paired with chef creations at each featured winery.
Wilson Creek Winery will host a Harvest Festival Oct. 19. A 10-piece band concert, harvest-themed buffet, Champagne welcome, grape stomping event, and pumpkin carving contest are just a portion of the fun.
Visitors won’t want to miss the return of People’s Choice Blind Tasting & Awards Dinner, running this November after last year’s successful inaugural event. Participants in the one-day tasting event will let their palates do the talking as the region’s best wine is crowned winner at the elegant wine dinner event created by local, artisan chefs and sommeliers.
Harvest festivals and events
Visitors old and young are invited to find their way in the Big Horse Corn Maze & Harvest Festival, running the entire month of October. The 11-acre corn maze, the largest in Southern California, will keep your family a-“mazed” for hours while additional activities include hay-rides, a corn cannon, pumpkin patch ripe for picking, kiddie rides and activities, food vendors and pie-eating contests, among so much more.
A Howl-o-Ween K-9 Costume Contest is the purr-fect opportunity to showcase your adorable fur babies. Texas Lil’s will feature a K9 menu and Yappy Hour.
E.A.T. Marketplace is hosting a variety of harvest events including “Gather at the Table,” a Local Craft Harvest Beer Pairing and Dinner (Oct. 5); “God of the Vine: Dionysus,” a speakeasy Pop-Up Bar with entertainment and delectable snacks; as well as “Yoga & Wine…is Divine!”
Temecula Carriage Company will offer a twist on its traditional horse-drawn wagon ride with a Halloween-themed experience aboard a Haunted Hayride. The family-friendly, but still a bit eerie, ride winds its way through spooky sites while listening to narration of the story of the Legend of Sleepy Hollow.
Western Days is also back in Old Town Temecula this September celebrating Temecula’s heritage. There will be pony rides, street vendors, entertainers and the Old Town Temecula Gunfights high noon shoot-out.
Just in time for fall, Old Town Spice & Tea Merchants is celebrating 10 years in business Nov. 11 and 12; they will be featuring samples made with various sweet and savory spice blends made on-site.
The 19th annual Old Town Temecula Outdoor Quilt Show this October will feature quilters, vendors, a quilt walk and quilt auctions. Hundreds of quilts will be on display in shops and hanging from balconies and buildings.
This October, the streets of Old Town Temecula will again transform into a thriving Greek metropolis as Temecula Greek Festival invites visitors to “Experience the Treasures of Greece” with authentic food vendors and delicious Greek pastries, a Mediterranean marketplace, children’s game area, live Greek music and folk dancing, as well as a Greek Wine, Beer and Liquor area.
About Visit Temecula Valley
With natural gifts of climate and geography Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country is recognized for scenic vineyards, award-winning wines and 40-plus wineries. The popular, boutique destination includes the Temecula Valley A.V.A. (American Viticulture Area) as well as Historic Downtown Old Town Temecula, Pechanga Resort & Casino, and Temecula Wine Country Golf Trail. Visit Temecula Valley is the region’s official tourism marketing organization and an online resource for visitors at VisitTemeculaValley.com. Temecula Valley Visitors Center is located in Old Town Temecula (Third Street and Mercedes). For visitor information and assistance, call (888) 363-2852 or (951) 491-6085.