An Odin Adventure: Visiting Temecula, CA Wine Country

Mark & Hilary Steves
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Editor’s Note: This post is written by a member of LTV’s sponsored content team, The Leisure Explorers. Do you own a Leisure Travel Van and enjoy writing? Learn more about joining the team.

NOTE: The following story is the latest in a series of posts “written” by Odin the Corgi. He, along with his brothers Thor and Apollo, travels with their parents in their 2018 Unity FX.

Day One

Winter (or what passes for winter here on the California Central Coast) came and went, and we haven’t taken the tiny house out in a long time. Imagine how happy I am to finally see Mom and Dad loading it up, including our doggie stuff. It must be time for another trip, and then early on a Monday morning, they open the doors and tell us to go “to the RV”– and all three of us make a beeline to get settled in. It’s time for another adventure!

It didn’t seem like a very long drive today. We often start with a long day on the road, but by lunchtime, we seem to be at our destination, which Dad says is Temecula, California. They say they’re here for the “wine” (I guess that’s the red juice they like to drink), but they’re nice enough to start at a dog park. My brothers and I enjoy running around for a bit before it’s back to the tiny house for lunch and then on to our first winery.

Our first stop is a place called Mount Palomar Winery. It’s a beautiful, big property with many chairs, including some that swing. We sit on a covered patio, and there aren’t many people around to give us pets, so we just lay down while Mom and Dad get some red juice. It doesn’t seem to be to their liking, but we walk around the grounds before leaving and sit for the first of many photo shoots. Mom and Dad can be so embarrassing….

The first of many posed pics. You can see I’m already dreading the rest.

All the wineries here are pretty close together, so the next stop is only a minute or so away. This place is even bigger than the last one. It’s called South Coast Vineyard and is a winery with a resort attached. Mom and Dad seem to like the red juice much better here, and they pick up a few bottles. We all find a nice spot in the shade, even though it’s not really that hot. But my brothers and I take another nap while Mom and Dad seem to enjoy their time here.

The view from our spot at the winery
Not like Thor and I were enjoying the view

We’re almost done for the day as we head to our final destination which seems to be where we’re spending the night, so we park in a designated spot, Dad sets up the tiny house (which is just making it a bit bigger on the inside and more stable with something called “jacks”) and we all spend some time outside before moving back in for dinner and games. Actually, Mom and Dad play games while we find our various spots to settle into. My spot is something Dad calls the “Odin cave”, under the bench seats. I like it because the blanket on top gives me some privacy, away from my distracting brothers.

Our parking spot for the night
My “Odin cave”. It gets me away from my brothers.

Day Two

The next day, we started in the morning at another winery called Ponte. It’s right next door to the South Coast winery we were at yesterday. Like I said earlier–all the wineries here are pretty close together, and they are (almost) all very large, new places. Ponte has pretty gardens and a nice spot that overlooks the green bushes that Dad says give them their red juice (he calls them “vines”). Like yesterday, there are very few people around, so unfortunately, I can’t get a lot of pets. My brothers and I have learned to find some shade and take a quick power nap, although sometimes one of us gets a lap to sit in.

We weren’t allowed to play in the garden
Thor got the lap this time.

We’re back in the tiny house for only a moment before our next stop, a place that Mom calls “Weens,” although the sign says it’s “Wien’s”. Mom and Dad eat their lunch here on the back patio and enjoy the red juice some more. I can always tell when they like a place when they bring home bottles. So far, they are collecting a few on this trip! After lunch, it’s a little longer, but Mom takes us over to the other side of the “wine country” area. I guess there are two main roads with all the wineries on them, and so far, we’ve been on the left road (Dad says it’s the “west” road). Now, we head to the other road, but it’s not a long drive before we get to Leoness Cellars. This is another pretty place, so Mom and Dad make us pose for pictures. At least the sun is out, but it’s not very hot. Someone said this place can get much hotter in the summer. I don’t think I’d want to be here then, especially if they make us sit outside. I’m glad Mom and Dad decided to come in early May. I couldn’t ask for better weather.

Mom found a nice spot in the shade
Starting to get tired of all the paparazzi!

I guess our limit for wineries is three for this trip because, after this last one, we will drive about 10 minutes to our stop for the night. Luckily, it’s not the same place as last night. This one is an actual RV resort, attached to a magical place called a “casino”. I guess the full name is Pechanga Casino and Resort. Our parking spot for the night is nice, with a flat paved area, a little grass around us, and, best of all, a mini dog park right next door! We get some time to play around there before we get our dinner. Then Mom and Dad have a shuttle bus pick them up at the site and they head off to this magical Casino place

Editor’s note: While Odin and his brothers slept after dinner, we went into the casino for dinner. We like staying at casinos because they tend to have restaurant choices (tonight was Italian for us), and then we can gamble a little if we want. This is a pretty big casino, so we found some electronic craps and roulette and played for an hour or so before heading back to the RV.

Day Three

After a good night’s sleep, the next morning, we head out, but this time not to a winery (at least not at first). We drive into an area called “Old Town Temecula”. It’s only a few blocks long, but many restaurants and “bars” weren’t open in the morning. Mom and Dad found some antique stores to explore, but it wasn’t too long before we were back in the wine country area (about 10 minutes away).

There was a nice garden store in this place
The downtown is only a few blocks long, so it didn’t take long to explore.

The first stop today is called Europa Village. It looks brand new, and Mom and Dad said there are three tasting rooms on site, each one styled after three regions in Europe–France, Spain, and Italy. I guess each place makes its red juice in that style. Mom and Dad have chosen to go to Italy today. There is also a marketplace, so they order a couple of pizzas. They like the truffle one, although they don’t share with us (how rude) so I can’t vouch for how good it was. (side note: It was really good!). They eat and have some red juice on a patio overlooking the hills.

View looking up to the Italian tasting room area
The view looking down from where we sat.

The next stop is another winery. You would think they would have had their fill by now, but no. This one is called Avensole Winery, and it is, yet again, another beautiful property. This place has a very large outdoor patio that we all can relax in. Some of us may have relaxed more than others! There was a little pond, so of course, that meant picture time, and Mom and Dad seemed to like the red juice here as well. Overall, they gave this wine country area two “thumbs” up (I don’t know what thumbs are because apparently, I don’t have any). They didn’t like the red juice at every winery, but enough that Dad says we can come back again someday.

We found a nice spot to sit
Finally, I made Mom and Dad pose as well

For this last night, we will return to the casino and our spot, which means we will have some time in the dog park! We sit outside until dinner (Mom and Dad eat the rest of what they didn’t eat last night). After dinner, they walk over to the casino again. When they came back, Dad said he was “up” $28 for the visit. Mom said she was “down” $40. I’m not a genius at math, but I don’t think that balanced out.

I am King of the Dog Park!
It’s tiring being King.


The next morning, they go back to the casino for breakfast, we get another run around the dog park, and then we are back on the road and home in just over four hours. This wasn’t the longest trip we’ve done in the tiny house, nor the shortest, but it was a good few days, and my brothers and I enjoyed a change of scenery. I’ll be ready to go back here or wherever Mom and Dad go next.

I’m ready to chronicle our next adventure!
Mark & Hilary Steves

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