Planning a trip to Apple Hill? I’ve got you covered. Read these helpful tips and which apple orchards you should add to your list during your visit. I’ll provide our full itinerary from our visit to Apple Hill which was a blast!
HelpfUL TIPS TO KNOW BEFORE VISITING APPLE HILL
- Comprise a list of Apple Orchards you want to see and must try foods from that orchard (My recommendations are below)
- Check the hours of operation for each orchard. Some orchards are open daily year round but some orchards are only open on the weekends, later in the week or open after Labor Day.
- To avoid the crowds, try visiting Apple Hill during a weekday. We were surprised at how many people were there at some of the more well known orchards on a Monday in September.
- Bring a cooler. Planning on taking some treats to go? I recommend bringing your cooler so the goods don’t melt during your visit. This also depends on the weather, we went on a very nice day where it was 80 degrees and sunny. If it’s cold, that might not be an issue but better safe than sorry.
- Bring your appetite and a friend so you can try more apple treats from each orchard by splitting them all.
Five must-visit spots to hit during your visit to Apple Hill – The Perfect Apple Hill Itinerary
- High Hill Ranch #1
- Fudge Factory #40
- Boa Vista Orchards #3
- Apple Ridge Farms #20
- Hidden Star Camino #23
High Hill ranch
Our first stop in Apple Hill was High Hill Ranch. We were surprised as to how many people were at High Hill Ranch on a Monday in September. It wasn’t crowded but I was expecting it to be empty for some reason.
High Hill Ranch offers plenty of space to walk around, lots of craft booths to look at in several areas, and activities for kids like face painting.
There is a pond surrounded by picnic tables, and grass areas to enjoy a picnic or your baked treats as well as deck that overlooks the water and scenic views.
Each building has its unique offering including apple donuts, packaged apple goods, caramel apples, BBQ, apple wine and pies.
As we went on a Monday, not everything was opened including a big outside hard cider area that looked like a fun hangout spot for adults. However, all of the craft booths were still open. Another building was closed, but you could still order the items from the Pie house.
Unless I missed something, you couldn’t see the pies in the window as to what you were ordering like you could from the bakery. Due to this, I forgot that I had the deep dish apple pie on my list that I had wanted to try.
Must-try items from High Hill Ranch:
- Apple Fritter – This thing was the size of my face and it was not lacking flavor
- Maple Apple Donut – The maple flavor and thickness of the glaze was so good
- Apple Juice – They don’t skimp on the apple juice and it tasted like you were biting an apple (Best apple juice I had all day)
Fudge Factory Farms
I am calling it out separately as it has its own orchard # with Apple Hill but to my pleasant surprise (as this was on my list of places to go) this is located on the Hill Hill Ranch property. If you are walking past the pond area, it will be on your right hand side.
Fudge Factory Farms is a typical fudge shop with all kinds of treats from fudge, caramel apples, shakes, sundaes, gourmet chocolate, dipped candy and fruit, etc.
Must-try items from Fudge Factory Farms:
- Apple Wedges with Caramel
- Pumpkin Pie Cup
- Amaretto Fudge (This tastes just like spumoni ice cream and melts in your mouth)
Boa Vista Orchards
Boa Vista Orchards is about a 4 minute drive (1.2 miles) from High Hill Ranch. As we are coming into the fall season, there is a very instagrammable pumpkin patch across the road with cute areas to take photos as well as some benches to enjoy the view.
Inside the orchard, you can find two different bakery windows, lots of goods including packaged and fresh as well as a hard cider/wine tasting area along the back. You can choose to grab your full size wine/beer/cider or flight and take it anywhere on the property. (On the other side of the road by the pumpkin patch has some great views but it’s pretty anywhere you go there).
For lunch, you’ll definitely want to grab a brisket sandwich from Boa Vista. You order any of the BBQ items at the pastry/bakery window and bring your ticket up to the BBQ pit. I highly recommend the brisket sandwich. The meat was so tender and the roll was so soft.
Must-try items from Boa Vista Farms:
- Apple Wine
- Hard Cider Tasting (includes the Apple Beer)
- Brisket Sandwich
We bought 3 bottles of Apple Beer, a bottle of Apple Wine and a Hard Cherry Cider to go from Boa Vista Orchards.
Apple Ridge farms
Apple Ridge Farms is about a 10 minute drive (4.4 miles) the other direction (past High Hill Ranch)
This was a much quieter area than the first two spots but again, this was later on a Monday. Here there are two different country gifts shops that of course sell treats, a window for food that had quite a long tasty menu as well as a bakery close by.
Apple Ridge Farms also has quite a few areas for kids to play including a maze and mining area for rocks. There were lots of different areas to walk around on this property with even some nature trails you can take. There are craft booths set up but they weren’t open on the Monday we went.
Now to the most important treat you need to try at Apple Hill is the Apple Dumpling from Apple Ridge Farms. The Apple Dumpling is a cored apple, wrapped in pie dough, baked and then smothered in caramel sauce and vanilla ice cream. This was hands down the best thing I ate all day and I’m still dreaming of this dumpling.
Must-try item from Apple Ridge Farms:
- Apple Dumpling (with Caramel and Ice cream)
The apple dumpling is a treat you’ll want to consume on property. You can take home a frozen one and do it at home but to get the full experience I think you should have it there. Thank me later.
Hidden star camino
Hidden Star Camino is a Cider Barn Taproom and Bakery (Two different buildings). The Bakery does offer a small menu if you’re hungry. There is a large outside area for kids to play including an airplane in the middle of the pumpkin patch.
This was our last stop of our Apple Hill Tour. Hidden Star is a 3 minute drive from Apple Ridge. (You’ll most likely pass Hidden Star on your way to Apple Ridge, but I’d say Hidden Star is a good last stop). I highly recommend trying a Hard Cider flight in the tap room. We tried 7 different ciders and all were so flavorful. We bought 2 bottles of hard cider to go.
We were told during the winter they serve some of the ciders warm along with a bowl of Chili. I know where I’ll be this winter.
Must-try item from Hidden Star:
1) Hard Cider Flight
The bakery looked pretty cleared out by the time we arrived late on a Monday. However, from their Instagram, it looks like they serve some pretty tasty treats as well.
more apple hill orchards to visit..
Since there are over 50 orchards and farms in Apple Hill Ca, I have a lot of Apple tasting to do to eventually check all of the ranches off my list. There were a few others that I had on my list to visit this last adventure but ran out of time. Other places to visit in Apple Hill on my next visit will be:
- Grandpa’s Cellar
- Rainbow Orchards
- Abel’s Apple Acres
- El dorado Orchards
- Delfino Farms
What is the best place to visit in Apple Hill according to you? I’d love to add it my apple hill bucket list. I saved our Apple Hill Adventure to a story highlight on my Instagram page @littlemissfitspo you can check out as well as an Instagram post including all of the spots we visited for a quick way to save this for your next trip!
Looking for other foodie places in California? Check out the best brunch spots in San Diego here.
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