With fires 100% contained, Napa and Sonoma ask tourists to return


The four main wildfires that had plagued Napa and Sonoma counties for much of October have been declared 100% contained by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, and Northern California's wine country has turned its attention towards wooing visitors back.

They are getting the message out that Napa and Sonoma are open for business.

"Now is the time to visit wine country," Visit California president and CEO Caroline Beteta said in a statement about the recovery efforts underway in Napa and Sonoma. "If you're already planning a trip, don't cancel -- wine country residents need your business now more than ever. We are doing everything we can to tell the world it's time to visit #CaliforniaWineCountryNOW."

The Nuns, Tubbs, Pocket and Atlas fires burned more than 161,000 acres of land throughout Napa and Sonoma counties, claiming thousands of buildings, but wine country communities are highlighting how much was not destroyed.

More than 90% of Sonoma County was not affected, according to Sonoma County Tourism, which reported that there are no road closures in the county's tourism areas.

"In Napa County, the wildfires mostly affected the eastern and western hills surrounding the valley floor," Visit Napa Valley said in a statement.

Of the more than 400 wineries in Napa Valley, only Signorello on the Silverado Trail remains closed due to fire damage, according to Visit Napa Valley.

All the other Napa wineries that were closed in the days following the outbreak of the fires -- primarily due to power outages, road closures, or employees who are unable to get to work -- have reopened.

According to Sonoma County Tourism, all businesses are open in the western and coastal parts of the county, which include popular destinations such as Sebastopol, Guerneville and Bodega Bay; in southern Sonoma county, which includes Petaluma; and northern Sonoma county, including Healdsburg and Geyserville. Almost all businesses are open in Santa Rosa and Sonoma Valley, the destination marketing organization stated. 

Businesses in Sonoma that remain closed for the foreseeable future due the fires are Hilton Sonoma Wine Country, Fountaingrove Inn, America's Best Value Inn & Suites, Paradise Ridge Winery (but operating from a second location, a tasting room in Kenwood), Sweet T's Restaurant and Willi's Wine Bar.

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