Delaplaine's 2013 Long Weekend Guide to Napa Valley by Andrew Delaplaine

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Like you, when I’m heading into a new place, I have bought travel guides and toiled through them hour after hour trying to extract from the book the “essence” of the city or region I was visiting. Sometimes, sadly, I spent more hours reading the book than I did in the town it purported to tell me about. To judge by the size of some of these books, you’d think I was planning on spending my life there, not just a few days.

By including exhaustive detail in their guidebooks, many writers actually end up obscuring the essence of the city they’re writing about rather than revealing it.
If you’re going to stay two or more weeks in a place, then by all means do your homework. There are hundreds of guides, both in print and online, to assist you.
But if you’ve only got 3 or 4 days, your needs really are different.
I would want to know:

= LODGINGS. What would be the best hotels or B&Bs or inns to choose from? I would want a choice of 4 or 5 places in different budget categories. (For the kid with a backpack will be on a different budget than someone on an expense account. A retired couple will have different wants and needs than a family of four.)

= RESTAURANTS. What would be a good selection of restaurants, again within different budget levels, that would represent the area I’m visiting? Again, whether expensive or cheap, which of the thousands of places to eat will give me a feel for the town?

= ATTRACTIONS. Of all the attractions and things to do, which are the most important that will leave me with memories that I’ve really seen the place?

= SHOPPING? Something different and out of the way reflective of the area. Not the big chains, whether that chain is Tiffany or the Gap. Something local.
Rather than craft a definitive itinerary for you the way many others have done, I’ve expanded the listings in each section so that you could get a good range of the offerings available—so you can pick and choose among them to craft your own special Long Weekend.

About Andrew Delaplaine

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Published January 26, 2013 by Gramercy Park Press. 50 pages
Genres: Travel.

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