One of the simple pleasures of any weekend getaway is window- or souvenir-shopping in unfamiliar little stores like those lining both sides of Main Street (most merchants are open daily 10am-5pm). Rickety old structures are filled with antiques and collectibles -- including places such as Antique Boutique, 2626 Main St. (tel. 760/765-0541), and A Rose Path, 2229 Main St. (tel. 760/765-1551; www.arosepath.net), a rustic hideaway with two small art galleries and a retail area selling antiques and scented candles made on-site. The Warm Hearth, 2125 Main St. (tel. 760/765-1022), is a vintage barn housing country crafts, candles, and woven throws among the woodstoves, fireplaces, and barbecue grills that make up the shop's main business.
Nearby is the Julian Cider Mill, 2103 Main St. (tel. 760/765-1430), where you can see cider presses at work October through March. It offers free tastes of the fresh nectar, and jugs to take home. Throughout the year, the mill also carries the area's widest selection of food products, from apple butters and jams to berry preserves, several varieties of local honey, candies, and other goodies.
You'll have to step uphill 1 block to find the charming Julian Tea & Cottage Arts, 2124 Third St. (tel. 866/765-0832; www.juliantea.com), for afternoon tea served amid a treasure-trove of tea-brewing tools and other tea-themed paraphernalia; the kettle is boiling Monday and Thursday to Saturday, 10:30am to 4pm, and Sunday 11am to 4pm (reservations required for weekends). If that sounds too frilly, head upstairs to the Culinary Cottage, home to stylish housewares, fine cookbooks, and gourmet foods (some of which are often available for tastings). Book lovers will enjoy stopping into the Old Julian Book House, 2230 Main St. (tel. 760/765-1989), purveyor of new and antiquarian volumes alike; it also carries a smattering of maps, sheet music, CDs, and ephemera.
Wineries have a presence in the area, too, including rustic Menghini Winery, 1150 Julian Orchards Dr. (tel. 760/765-2072; www.menghiniwinery.com), which has a small tasting area and gift shop, and rolling picnic grounds that host special events throughout the year; nearby is Blue Door Winery, 1255 Julian Orchards Dr. (tel. 858/278-1640; www.mandcwinery.com). Witch Creek Winery, 2000 Main St. (tel. 760/765-2023; www.witchcreekwinery.com), has a simple tasting room right in town.
A number of roadside fruit stands and orchards dot the Julian hills; during autumn they're open all day, every day, but in the off-season some might open only on weekends or close entirely. Depending on the season, most stands sell apples, pears, peaches, cider, jams, jellies, and other homemade foodstuffs. Many are along Hwy. 78 between Julian and Wynola, 3 miles away; there are also stands along Farmers Road, a scenic country lane leading north from downtown Julian.
Ask San Diegans who regularly make excursions to Julian, and they'll concur: No trip would be complete without stopping for a loaf (or three) of bread from Dudley's Bakery, 30218 Hwy. 78, Santa Ysabel (tel. 760/765-0488; www.dudleysbakery.com). Loaves are stacked high, and folks are often lined up at the counter clamoring for the nearly 20 varieties of bread baked fresh daily since 1963. Choices range from raisin-date-nut to jalapeño, with some garden-variety sourdough and wheat grain in between. There's also a deli and gift shop stocking jewelry, books, and crafts. Dudley's is open Thursday through Sunday from 9am to 5pm, and on Monday from 9am to 1pm. If it's closed, never fear -- Don's Market (tel. 760/765-3272) next door stocks a good selection, as well as sweet treats from Mom's Pies. There's also a Julian Pie Company outpost here.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.