If I have learned anything about my travels through Northwest Kansas, it’s that you are never far away from an unexpected and hidden gem. Shiloh Vineyard & Winery is just that for the WaKeeney area. Like many attractions in the region, a few miles on gravel roads will lead you to some of the prairie’s best-kept secrets. As John Denver sang, “country roads, take me home,” maybe the rock roads of Kansas take you to your home away from home. A place where you can leave your troubles behind, sip wine, and take in what rural America provides, a place like Shiloh.
When you pull into the property, the renovated barn is sure to catch your eye first. The craftmanship of this building is a proud piece of artwork and provides the perfect aesthetic to your rural getaway. The barn is available to rent for weddings, corporate parties, and events. The mural on the outside is a great backdrop for photos and insta-worthy selfie sessions.
The property has been in owner Kirk’s family for over 100 years. The tasting room was once served as a chicken coop built by Kirk’s grandfather. It’s now a quaint place to gather with a few sitting areas, a small retail area with western-style goods, and of course, a wall full of wine. There’s a variety of different wines to try, from dry reds and whites to sweet varieties, fruit, and dessert. Attached to the tasting room is a spacious covered patio, the perfect place to unwind with good company. Throughout the year, you can find different events happening at the winery, like live music, art & crafts, or wine classes.
There are lodging and camping opportunities on site. The Grainery is a remodeled 3-room shed that sleeps 6 people between the queen bed, pull out sofa, and a murphy bed in the den. Amenities include a fridge, microwave, coffee pot, and a washer and dryer. The owners are also part of the Harvest Host program which allows guests to camp on the property free of charge in exchange for purchasing farm products. Shiloh Vineyard & Winery allows campers, RV’S, and travel trailers for boondocking sites. Primitive camping is also allowed. Plans to add electrical to the camping sites are in the works for summer 2023.
Allow yourself a few days to explore the Northwest region. With Shiloh as your home base for the trip, you can easily get to the badland areas, with Castle Rock about 35 minutes away and Little Jerusalem Badlands State Park and Monument Rocks within an hour and a half. The town of WaKeeney is just a hop and skip away with a few different dining options.
If you want to hit some trails, Cedar Bluff State Park offers some incredible views. For college town vibes, head to Hays to spend an afternoon exploring the “Bricks.” You can shop til you drop, indulge in foodie delights, and relax with a coffee. On my recent trip, I ended up at Sunflowers & Silos, a western/boho-style boutique with a hat bar. I was able to pick out my hat and select the accessories I wanted on the band. Shop owner Kate custom-steamed the shape I wanted and helped me with the branding and burning designs. I was able to pick up the finished product the next day on my way back home, but there are also shipping options. Hays has quickly become one of the favorite places to stop and shop.
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