Ever since we moved back to California I have been dying to go to Apple Hill! It is the best place in California to get that cider drinking, pie eating, apple picking autumn feeling. I might even consider it like an autumn that you would experience back East (minus the brightly colored maple trees that I grieve for every fall – sniff sniff). We went in September since I’ve heard that it gets really crowded in October, so maybe the trees change colors later in the season. My hopes have risen!
Apple Hill is only an hour from Sacramento (located right off the 50) so it was a really easy day trip for us. We weren’t sure which of the 55 farms we were going to visit, because I like to fly by the seat of my pants when we travel…much to my husband’s dismay. Spontaneous adventures are the best!
(Remind me to tell you about when we went across the country for the first time, and I took an exit onto a small country road when I saw an exit for Amish Country in Indiana. It only ended up being three hours out of our way, but the food and the country, OMG, it was totally worth it!!)
I knew that I wanted to go to Kids Inc. because I remember it being really beautiful when we went eleven years ago, and I knew that I wanted to try some apple doughnuts, since that is what Apple Hill is famous for…I mean besides the whole apple growing thing. I also knew that I wanted to go into an orchard and pick some apples, because that is seriously fun for me! Unless I get my foot stuck in a mole hole, which didn’t happen, but I was a little afraid of happening…
Apple Hill is super light on u-pick orchards, or so it seems. So, if that seems like fun to you, too, then I would suggest doing a little research and finding one that offers it.
Let’s talk about this apple doughnut for a minute. It came from Able’s Apple Orchard and it was AMAZING! Like, if I didn’t promise my kids a doughnut after they ate their dinner, I might have eaten all 6 doughnuts by myself kind of good.
They were light and cake-like on the inside, which I didn’t know could be a thing, but was, and they were crisp but not crunchy on the outside. Not only did they have the perfect balance of textures, but they were perfectly balanced in terms of sweetness and fried doughy goodness, too. I highly suggest stopping by Able’s for one, or two, or six. They are worth every. single. Calorie.
Then, of course, there was Kids Inc. The best place for boys, because they can kick up the red dirt and roll down the big grassy hill (and possibly run into some rose bushes if they aren’t careful, but just in case you talk to them, I never said that they actually did that…it was just a possible thing to do 😉).
They also had corn mazes (a small one for kids 8 and under on site and a massive one only a mile or two up the road), animals to admire (and feed some of the fallen apples to…even though other people’s kids who I watched do it probably shouldn’t have…I mean, my kids are angels and would NEVER try to feed the goats…why is this one acting like my sons just fed it?? Crap, I am THAT parent…OMG! Boys stop feeding the pig, the goat ate enough for them both!!😂)
If you’re into Etsy-esque crafts, wine tasting, amazing fall food, and beautiful California foothill roads, then this place NEEDS to go onto your fall bucket list! Like now…or maybe wait until next September, so you can really enjoy it without the droves of people who are up there right now.