Looking for an easily accessible urban park with a great view of Napa?
That would be Westwood Hills Park, a very small diamond in the rough that rests on the far western edge of town. It includes a short, but semi-steep, trail up to a ridge-line route where there are 360-degree views of the Napa Valley.
On the way to the meandering and gnarled oaks that make great climbing spots are a few other sights worth checking out, including a thin but tall and lush eucalyptus grove and plenty of smaller live oaks. This time of year, the brooks are babbling, and the trail is muddy in spots, but not overly so. The park only encompasses about three miles worth of trails in total, but there are scenic benches at virtually every vista point, so if part of your hiking itinerary includes stopping to take in the beauty of what’s around you (crazy concept, no?) , this can be a pleasant outing. I went to Westwood on New Year’s Day, which must be the most crowded day to hike in this country, so there were plenty of people out. But I suspect that this little park is not generally too crowded. Dogs are welcome, but watch out for cows, which are omnipresent too.
It’s a city-owned, kid-friendly park with a decent parking lot and room for street parking nearby. No charge, and no facilities either.
Highly recommended for a quick, low-impact woodsy stroll, either before or after that decadent Napa outing that is probably also on your agenda that day.