From amazing winery hotels to being within walking distance of downtown, where to stay in Temecula depends on what you hope to get out of your stay.
I’m a San Diego native and a Temecula wine club member. When looking for where to stay in Temecula Valley wine country, I have the pulse on all the tried and true places, the newest developments, plus all the best things to do in Temecula. In this article, we’ll break it down by neighborhood and hotel. Let’s dive in!
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Best Places to Stay in Temecula
Just looking for a quick answer on the best places to stay in Temecula? Here are my top picks:
- 🏆 Best Overall Hotel – South Coast Winery Resort
- ✨ Best Luxury Hotel – Inn at Churon Winery
- 👪 Best for Families – Temecula Creek Inn
- 👔 Best for Business – Hampton Inn & Suites
- 🛎️Best Boutique – Ponte Vineyard Inn
- 🏌️♂️ Best For Golf & Gambling – Pechanga Resort Casino
- 💵 Best Budget – Signature Temecula
- 🍇 Best Vineyard Access – Carter Estate Winery and Resort
Ok, let’s do a deep dive into the best areas and neighborhoods in Temecula:
3 Best Neighborhoods & Areas to Stay in Temecula
Temecula is closer to San Diego but technically part of Los Angeles, making it a popular day trip from LA. Choosing a place to stay or hotels in Temecula depends on the type of modern amenities you’re looking for, such as an outdoor swimming pool, fitness center, or onsite tasting room. This map of Temecula is a great base point for getting the lay of the land.
Old Town Temecula
Historic Temecula Old Town is the downtown area of Temecula and is at the center of all the tourist attractions. Meander down old western streets paved with saloons, antiques, restaurants, vintage shops, museums, and tastings.
From dawn to dusk, the town is full of energy. A weekly farmers market and rotating live music performers keep visitors entertained at all hours.
Temecula is one of the more classic places to visit in California. Staying at a hotel in Old Town means you can expect complimentary breakfast, warm hospitality, and spacious rooms with a nostalgic country flair. The town caters to families, kids, couples, and locals alike.
The best part is staying so central to many of the best things to do in Temecula without having to drive.
Pros of Staying in Old Town Neighborhood:
- Lots of great restaurants, bars, and shopping
- A ton of vintage and antique finds
- Downtown is a super walkable, delightful stroll of quaint western buildings
- Steps away from the weekend farmers market
- Town lights up at night
Cons of Staying in Old Town Neighborhood:
- Parking is often scarce and weekends are crowded
- With such a small downtown, expect long waits without dinner or brunch reservations
- Often overpriced establishments due to all the tourist attractions
📚 Old Town Temecula Mini Guide 📚
Best Area to Stay for Old Town
🏠 Apartments – Browse Top Rentals in Old Town Temecula
🍽️ Where to Eat – Gambling Cowboy ($$$), Small Barn Old Town ($$$), Goat & Vine ($$)
🍸 Where to Drink – 1909 Temecula, Coin-Op Game Room, Stone Church Brewing
🎟️ Top Attractions – Farmers Market, Temecula Valley Museum, Antiquing, Temecula Olive Oil Company
Northeast of downtown Temecula is home to rows of wineries. Vineyard after vineyard offers tastings of Italian and Spanish red grapes, Champagne, and other varietals. I still don’t know what I love more, the Temecula fairytale vineyard views, or tasting the wines. Staying in East Temecula is definitely one of the most romantic getaways in CA.
The estates are spread out so you’ll want to drive or book a public or private tour guide. Many folks even rent limos to head to top California wineries in style.
One of the best aspects of staying at a Temecula wine country hotel in East Temecula is the ability to wake up to acres of land right outside your room. Especially South Coast Winery Resort. Their luxurious accommodations have french doors, private terraces overlooking rolling hills with oversized marble bathrooms, deep soaking tubs, and the best spa location in town!
Pros of Staying in East Temecula Neighborhood:
- Picturesque landscape views
- Many of the wineries have a breathtaking restaurant onsite
- Quieter area for rest and relaxation
- A quick drive or bike ride to surrounding wineries
Con of Staying in East Temecula Neighborhood:
- Wineries and restaurants close earlier in this area
- You’ll need a rental car to get around
- Vineyard property hotels are a lot pricer than other areas to stay in San Diego
📚 East Temecula Mini Guide 📚
Best Area to Stay for East Temecula
🏠 Apartments – Browse Top Rentals in East Temecula
🍽️ Where to Eat – Baba Joon’s Kitchen ($$$), Leoness ($$), Mama Rosa’s Trattoria ($$)
🍸 Where to Drink – Ponte Vineyard Inn, Carter Estate Winery, Europa Village, Fazeli Cellars
The South side of Temecula wine country has its own charm, most notable for its champion golf courses combined with rolling hills, casino, an on-site restaurant, spa, and more.
There are many hikes in San Diego and visitors will enjoy the variety of hiking and biking trails scattered throughout Temecula. In South Temecula, you get the best of both worlds. Plenty of nature while less than a 20-minute drive to the famed South Coast Winery Resort Spa.
Pros of Staying in South Temecula Neighborhood:
- Nature and outdoor adventure await
- A golfers paradise
- Gambling and casino gaming activities
- Spa treatments
Cons of Staying in South Temecula Neighborhood:
- Lacking attractions, shopping, and entertainment here
- Everything is spread out, so you’ll need a car
- Farther from wineries
📚 South Temecula Mini Guide 📚
Best Area to Stay for South Temecula
🏠 Apartments – Browse Top Rentals in South Temecula
🍽️ Where to Eat – The Great Oak Steakhouse ($$$), Umi Sushi & Oyster Bar ($$$), Cork Fire Kitchen ($$)
🍸 Where to Drink – 1882 Cantina, The Daisy, Journey’s End
🎟️ Top Attractions – Journey at Pechanga, Temecula Creek, Santa Margarita River Trail & Preserve, hiking trails
Tips for Staying in Temecula
Skip the Driving if You Plan to Drink
All the Temecula wineries have an extensive tasting menu but don’t risk driving these roads tipsy.
Instead, opt to stay onsite at a winery or book a spot on a historic cable car to sip your way through a handful of wineries. The fun doesn’t have to stop in Temecula. Check out the best things to do in San Diego.
End Your Day With the Perfect Sunset
Temecula’s mountainscape sunsets can be quite a show, especially overlooking the grapevines. The best place to watch a sunset would be on a hot air balloon ride, as well as the Santa Margarita Preserve, and many of the wineries, especially Callaway.
Gather Farm-to-Table Local Produce
If you’re visiting on a weekend, stop by the local farmers market. It has fantastic prices for top-quality produce. You can also find secluded picnic spots all around town so bring a blanket and your market snacks, and you’ve got a great affordable afternoon.
Learn Something New at the Temecula Valley Museum
The history of the Temecula area is on full display at the Temecula Valley Museum. There are permanent exhibits here such as Temecula History, Children’s Touch History Exhibit, and Erle Stanley Gardner: Perry Mason Author.
Visit Temecula Seasonally
During the peak of summer, Temecula can get an unbearable 100 degrees outside. The most enjoyable weather is during the changing fall leaves, and in spring/early summer there are a ton of seasonal activities including blueberry and orange picking and pumpkin patches.
Regardless of the seasons and best times to visit California, make sure to pack layers when visiting Temecula.
FAQs About Where to Stay in Temecula
Is Temecula worth visiting?
Out of all the things to do in California, visiting Temecula should be on your travel list if you’re a wine connoisseur, a golfer, or a western junkie.
What is Temecula known for?
Temecula is known for being a wine region of Riverside County that is well-suited to growing red wines. It is also home to olive oil, lavender, old western-style architecture, and golf courses.
Is Temecula walkable?
Temecula is less than 40 square miles and contains mostly open land. The old town square is very walkable but to get to the outskirts where the golf and wineries are located, you’ll need a car. I highly suggest reserving a rental car for your ultimate convenience to explore the best of Temecula Valley.
Is Temecula safe?
Temecula is very safe and makes our top 13 places to live in California. Temecula is especially safe for tourist activities and the town’s crime rates are lower than the national average.
What are the best places to stay in Temecula?
Staying right in the heart of Old Town has its unique charm and walkability while staying right on the property of one of the vineyard estates gives you onsite tastings and landscape views.
Thanks for reading my where to stay in Temecula guide! I hope I’ve helped you find the best places to stay in Temecula for you!
Up next, check out this awesome guide to San Diego’s beach towns – they just might convert you into a Southern Californian.
Have fun in Temecula!
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