We drove out to Julian last weekend for apple picking, Julian’s famous apple pie and apple wine. This year, we went with some friends and family and it was fun to see the all the kids play in the orchard.

The Raven Hill Orchard is under new ownership and the hippies are gone. It’s now called Volcan Valley Apple Farm, and the apples were definitely better this time. After filling our $10 bags, we walked over to the winery across the street shared a bottle of apple wine at a picnic table. Live music on the tasting room patio and space for the kids to explore really made it a great fall afternoon.

My adorable nephew!

Daddy and Little J


On our way into Julian, we saw several other orchards that we may try next time. It was opening weekend at Calico Ranch, an apple and pear orchard, and we saw an organic apple farm near there too. Check out all the orchards and their opening dates on Julian’s city website.

We would love to see Oasis Camel Dairy sometime (camel’s milk soap!), but they only give tours once a month. Also, book a campsite a few months in advance to camp at William Heise County Park during apple picking season. The campground is 1 mile from Julian and has a playground!

See last year’s apple picking blog post for our other favorite wine spot!