Wine and walking? Sounds like a perfect outdoor activity in SW Michigan. IF IT EVER STOPS SNOWING (she types while staring out the window at actual snow on 4/18/22).
Just over an hour from Kalamazoo is the Round Barn Estate, a winery/distillery that serves craft beer along with cocktails. Located in Baroda, MI, the Round Barn Estate also offers live music in the summer months, fire pits to enjoy your wine by when it gets chilly, and even a couple of homes you can book for an extended stay.
However, what makes the Round Barn Estate even more unique is the fact that you can travel to the nearby Tabor Hill Winery and Restaurant via a nature trail.
Recently featured on travelandleisure.com, the Mt. Tabor Trails, as they're called, connect wine lovers to both Round Barn Estate and Tabor Hill Winery. Be prepared though, this isn't a quick 500-yard trip. In total, the trails equal just over 3 miles of walking. But, don't let that discourage you. On their trail map, which you can see here, they've laid out a route that's 1.15 miles roundtrip.
There are trails suitable for people of all experience levels and, yes, you are absolutely encouraged to take your drink with you. However, they have limited that to a glass of wine/beer/cocktail versus howlers/growlers/wine bottles due to concerns over glass and safety.
Trail difficulty levels are easily identifiable by color with green being the easiest and orange being the hardest. But, whatever trail you choose, it'll certainly be a unique way to get from winery to winery. A few rules to keep in mind:
- No littering. There are trash receptacles at both trailheads.
- Kids are welcome as long as they are with an adult
- Pets are welcome but must remain on a leash at all times
- No firearms
- No outside alcoholic beverages allowed
- No foraging
You can see the full list of rules here. Unfortunately, at this time the trails are not wheelchair or stroller accessible.
Should you start at Round Barn Estate just after lunch, that'll give you plenty of time to have a nice day, take a quick stroll, and land at Tabor Winery for dinner or a wine tasting.
If your group consists of 8 people or fewer, you don't even need to make a reservation for the wine tastings. Read more on Tabor Hill Winery's website.
Sounds like the perfect outing, right? And, of course, should you want to skip the walking you could always drive from winery to winery. But, where's the sense of adventure in that?
Speaking of winery tours, Traverse City in the Fall is a must-see. If you're planning on visiting for the first time, check out this first-timers guide: