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It sounds strange... "Ensenada Wine Country" but it's not, it's absolutely BEAUTIFUL!! Whether stopping in Ensenada for the day on a cruise or as part of a road trip down the Baha, a trip inland to the Wine Country is a must.
If you happen to be on a cruise, stopping for a day in Ensenada, and you overhear people saying that Ensenada is not worth getting off the ship for, don't listen. The city it's self is not too exciting but there's much more to the area than the city.
Reserve a car from Hertz in advance and confirm your reservation a few days before you leave. The prices are great, even if you add every insurance offered. The Hertz rental car building is on Riveroll and Segunda, less than a mile from the cruise ship dock, so just walk. Make sure you print out a city map at home to be able to navigate yourself around. There's also a local rental car agency, Fiesta, inside of the Corona Hotel
Take Highway 1 North to Highway 3 and head East out of town. You'll know when you're getting close to Highway 3 because of the smell... there is a tuna canning factory right near the intersection of Highway 1 and Highway 3 and don't worry, you won't miss the smell!
Highway 3 winds up through the mountains for 7 miles or so and into Valle de Guadalupe. There are wineries all over the place. This article only covers four of them :
Three Woman Winery - They make all of their wine by hand and sell true hand made plates and bowls and tiles that are gorgeous. Their wine cellar, where the tasting is done, is quaint and charming. The cellar and grounds are lovely but the best part of this winery is the Owner, Yvette. She is so kind and has such a peaceful personality. You could spend a lot of time at this small winery chatting and tasting and completely enjoying yourself.
La Casa Vieja: Their friendly dog, Amiga, comes out to greet you the second you pull in the parking lot. There is much history behind this small family-owned winery. The couple that owns it and does the tastings is very nice and happy to show you the grounds and their pet goats.
Dona Lupe Organic Winery and Bakery: They not only sell wine, but jams, jellies, spices, sauces, pastries, and pizza as well. Everything they sell is organic. They have a beautiful patio out back with a big grassy area that is a wonderful place to wait while your pizza cooks.
L.A. Cetto: It's huge! They are a commercial winery that exports their wine all over the world. It is neat to see the difference between the small, personal, family wineries and this big elegant commercial winery.! Take a tour at L.A. Cetto to see how the wine is made. Their grounds are gorgeous and they have a big enclosure with lots of beautiful birds in it.
Sol de Media Noche: In addition to its fine selection of wines (ask for "Beso el Sol", their best white wine), they are the only winery in the area to produce its own bread and cheese on a daily basis (ask for the strongest cheese, know as "Cimarron"). This is a great place to finish off at after you have seen L.A. Cetto, as it is very close by. Guadalupe ("Lupita") is the owner and a wonderful host as well! Adress: Calle Principal 310 and Tercera en Valle de Guadalupe.
Be sure to get the rental car back to Hertz with enough time to stop at a few shops on your walk back to the ship. If you're lucky enough to be on a road trip, there are a few great places to sleep in Valle de Guadalupe... would be worth checking into.