Portions of this trip and blog post were sponsored, but all opinions are my own. Please see the bottom of the blog post to read more on the sponsored items.
A few weeks ago Neyda (@trulyney) and I were invited on a road trip by Avi. (@always.avi.) Avi grew up in Mexicali and has a friend who opened a boutique hotel in Valle de Guadalupe, Mexico called Lumi. Something that I didn’t realize before this invitation is that Valle de Guadalupe (VDG) is Mexico’s wine country with over 200 different wineries throughout the valley and Avi grew up just a few hours away!
Our road trip started Thursday night as soon as we all got out of work. We drove about 4 hours to Avi’s hometown first to meet her mom and aunt. After crashing for the night, we had breakfast with Avi’s family and hit the road again. From Mexicali we drove straight to the hotel Lumi in VDG. This took us about 4 more hours. There are definitely other routes in driving to VDG that could be quicker, so I recommend doing your research to find the best route for you. Plus, if you’re not familiar with the roads in Mexico, my suggestion is to research the various routes based on road conditions. The road conditions we traveled on were fine and we even had the option to take toll roads, which were nicer than other roads. However, there was a mountain that we drove over that had steep and windy roads. Thankfully our driver, Neyda, is a pro and got us across safely. I can’t say that I would have enjoyed driving that road!
Once we were in the town, we were guided by signs and arrows saying Lumi that took us into the valley away from any paved roads. The roads were a little bumpy, but it definitely added to the country feel. Getting to the hotel, we were surrounded by wildflowers, trees, horses, goats – it is gorgeous there! They are even growing grapes on site to start a winery too. The story behind Lumi is that it was created by a Mexican husband and a Finnish wife with an emphasis on sustainable living. The cabins are created out of recycled shipping containers and the insides are decorate so modern and minimalistic. I felt like I was inside a CB2 mixed with a West Elm. I love the styling and feel I got while I was there. Plus they have a Finnish sauna and an outdoor jacuzzi on top of their 6 cabins. If you have kids, there’s a play area for them too.
We ended up having a cabin all to ourselves. There was a room with a full bed and another room on the other side with a queen bed. We shared a living space and a bathroom that had a huge rain shower with a body length window that looked out into the valley. I was kinda weirded out at first, but realized that the outside was a mirror so no one could see in. They also had robes and slippers for each of us! My favorite feature of the cabin was the upstairs balcony. Every cabin had stairs that went to a roof deck. It was so gorgeous to see the sun drop down behind the hills. We enjoyed waking up to the view with breakfast up there as well. Each morning the hotel staff brought trays of food for us with fresh breakfast breads, jams, honey, yogurt, fruit, juice coffee, and tea. One morning we had fresh zucchini bread and another morning it was little scones.
Outside of Lumi, there are tons of wineries and restaurants to explore right in the valley. On our second night in VDG (Saturday night) we went to the cutest open-air market area. The community area had multiple restaurants, ice cream parlors, shops, farm animals, walking trails – it was SO cute! It looked like a place people congregate for all types of celebrations, family time, tourism, and even just a place to relax by yourself too. The sunset here was incredible. We tried to get a few photos before the sun went down with Neyda’s tripod – the photos crack me up because her hat kept flying off all day and we finally had a photo to prove it! After exploring this area we had wine and appetizers at Finca Altozano. They prepared VDG’s speciality – octopus and it was delicious! I also get a side of brussel sprouts and churros because those sounded delicious after a day of drinking wine! We experienced a few other wineries and restaurants, but I will break those out in my next post.
If you’re staying for an extended period of time and want to explore other areas in Mexico, we actually went to Ensenada to visit Avi’s dad on our first night in VDG (Friday night.) We had dinner at a seafood restaurant, because that is what they’re known for and it didn’t dissapoint. We didn’t make it down there early enough to see the water in clear sunlight, but I could make it out in the dark as we drove by. Ensenada is about 30-45 minutes west of VDG, which isn’t bad if you want to see the ocean. It sounds like a lot of people from California drive down through Tijuana to explore Rosarita, Ensenada and VDG since it’s just a few hours south.
For more information on Valle De Guadalupe in general, please visit the San Diego tourism website that features VDG and surrounding areas.