Visiting Napa Valley, California, is like visiting Tuscany, only without the passport hassle. Wide sweeping vineyards of ripe grapes, historic and modern wineries, and the golden sunlight that shines on both California and Italy, Napa and its attractions are awe inspiring to say the least. On top of all that beauty, you can even visit an authentic medieval Tuscan castle complete with drawbridge, dungeon, and wine cellar with true Roman arches.

Castello di Amorosa, the aforementioned Tuscan castle, opened its doors in 2007 as a Calistoga winery and tourist attraction. The owner, a vintner by the name of Dario Sattui, whose great-grandfather immigrated to the U.S. from Italy in 1885, officially starting the family business of wine-making. The castle was fashioned authentically from medieval Italian architectural styles, imported stone, and plenty of imported decor including suits of armor, and the 300 year old iron maiden in the torture chamber. Frescoes by Italian painters decorate the interior hall, courtyards open up to the fresh air and welcome visitors to sample some of the house wines, and tours showcase the 107 rooms on eight total levels, above and below ground.

There are a variety of touring options, including those that pair with food and wine tastings. Come for the afternoon and relax in the courtyard sipping the finest vintages, or simply tour the many brilliantly fashioned rooms of the castle for a unique tour stop. How many times do you encounter the opportunity to visit a Tuscan castle? It's well worth a visit.


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