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Conejo Valley: The Gateway to Wine Country

Definitely not your typical, crowded wine tasting experience, the Conejo Valley wineries will thrill your palate and deliver a tasting adventure yet-to-be-experienced by many! With a welcoming wine trail all its own, check out why Conejo Valley’s wineglass is way more than half full, from Thousand Oaks down to Malibu and everywhere in between.

Start to sip your way through the Conejo Valley Wine trail at NABU Wines. This Conejo Valley gem produces wine with grapes from the local Santa Monica Mountains. Among our favorite varietals are Chardonnay and Syrah from Malibu, but dozens of other choices await.

Next, check out the recently expanded Sunland Vintage tasting room in Thousand Oaks, where Michael and Debby Giovinazzo welcome you to experience wines unique to their family label. What sets Sunland Vintage apart from others? They produce varietals of Old Italy, such as Nebbiolo, Montepulciano and Dolcetto, along with special proprietary blends including Tre Ragazzi, Delicate Princes and The Goddess.

While you’re at Sunland Vintage, enjoy a glass or two from Alma Sol Winery, a family-owned and operated micro-boutique winery that shares a tasting room with Sunland. Bringing together two vital elements needed to craft extraordinary wines –“soul” and “sun”– the winemakers embrace hands-on, artisan winemaking to produce primarily Bourdeaux blends. Alma Sol handpicks their grapes in small lots, respecting the fruit and guiding its natural potential.

Continue your winery exploration with a visit to the newest wine trail stop, DeLiese Cellars. The friendly husband-and-wife winemaking team will happily pour you a few sips of their famous Neveah Cabernet Sauvignon from Malibu (Neveah is “heaven” spelled backwards) or if you prefer white, try their Allure Chardonnay.

Round out your tasting trip with a stop at Aldabella Winery. This tasting room carefully selects wines from local growers, and is a warm and welcoming spot to relax and enjoy a few small bites with friends after a day on the trail.

Looking for more? Drive the canyon and check out the tasting rooms of Malibu (only 10 minutes up the road from Conejo Valley), and experience Cielo Wineyard, SIP Malibu Grapes, and Malibu Rocky Oaks Estates. To make it a real adventure, check out Malibu Wine Safaris, where you can meet a few exotic, four-legged friends out on the wine trail!

Pick up a wine trail map (available at all wineries) and discover the beauty and character of the Conejo Valley wine trail – “The Gateway to Wine Country.”

Adorable Animals Await at Malibu Wine Safari

It’s a wonderful time of year to escape to Conejo Valley. The weather is warming up, the crowds are mellow, and there’s never a bad time to relax and catch your breath. Make Conejo Valley your home-away-from-home for a few days while you hike, golf, swim, shop, eat…and meet some four-legged friends at Malibu Wine Safari!

One of the coolest (and cutest!) experiences Conejo Valley has to offer is the much-buzzed about Malibu Wine Safari. This is a totally new way to discover the beautiful wines of the Santa Monica Mountains while mingling with exotic animals (who just happen to be retired movie stars). These cuddly celebrities – including zebras, alpacas, camels and bison – are now relaxing at Saddlerock Ranch and Vineyard, home to Malibu Family Wines, after a busy career in the spotlight.

Just 30 minutes outside of Los Angeles, adventure awaits with Malibu Wine Safaris. Guests are in for a fun, memorable experience as open-air safari vehicles transport them across the expansive, picturesque 1,000-acre Saddlerock Ranch and Vineyard.

The tour includes scenic stops where groups will get to take in stunning vista views while sampling some of Malibu’s best boutique wines, all from locally sourced grapes. Come ready to sip, savor and learn about the local, casual wine-making culture that creates unique yet palette-friendly blends – always better when enjoyed with new friends.

The best part? Each stop on the safari includes a chance to feed, pet and snap photos of some of the cutest animals you’ll ever meet (not cuter than your dog, of course!). They love a good carrot, and go nuts for bananas. And remember, these are former movie celebrities, so they are not camera shy and always hit the perfect pose.

Dress casually and be ready for a little rugged walking – you’re on a safari, after all! Leave flips flops and heels at home, and hey, if a little wine or dirt gets on your shirt, that’s OK. No one will judge you in Conejo Valley.

When you think of this adventure, think: the kind of fun you had as a kid at the zoo with all of the perks of being an adult!

After the excursion, head back into town to relax and have dinner. There are several great restaurants and brewpubs to choose from as you update Instagram with your favorite animal pic of the day. With wine and cute mammals in the mix, there’s sure to be something shareworthy.

So grab a friend, decide where to stay and start planning your trip to Conejo Valley today – the exotic animals are waiting to meet you!