Travelling through vineyards, visiting wineries and tasting their produce, is a real pleasure for any wine lover. It is an opportunity to see where favourite vintages are made, to discover new favourites and perhaps stock up your cellar. Here are a few of our favourite wine regions to visit. Why not book yourself a holiday, buy some cheap travel insurance and pack your bags? Whichever one of these regions you choose, you are sure to have a delicious trip.
Internationally, Australia is perhaps best known for its South Australian wine regions. The Barossa and Clare Valleys are amongst the names that have gained a deserved reputation for fine wines. Other regions, such as Margaret River in Western Australia and the Yarra Valley in Victoria, have also made their mark. Tasmania, however, remains an undiscovered gem overseas, and for many Australians too. Crisp sparkling wines, balanced cool climate chardonnays and elegant pinot noirs are the standard bearers of the Tasmanian wine industry, but you will be just as charmed by Tasmania’s natural beauty and the friendly down-to-earth nature of the people you meet at cellar doors around the state.
Situated on the banks of the Douro River in northern Portugal, Oporto offers a rare opportunity to combine a city holiday with visits to world class wineries, or in this case ‘Port Houses’. As well as tasting samples of a variety of port styles, including white, ruby, tawny and vintage, you can discover the fascinating history of this unique fortified wine and learn about some of the most famous names in the wine world.
Hawkes Bay, New Zealand
Hawkes Bay in New Zealand provides everything you could possibly want from a wine holiday. Situated on the east coast of the North Island, the region has the highest amount of sunshine of anywhere in New Zealand, so when you are not wine tasting you can relax on the beach. That of course is if you can tear yourself away from the stunning art deco town of Napier where you will find wonderful restaurants serving top class food to complement the regions elegant Bordeaux style red wines and alluring chardonnays. These wines of course will be the focus of your stay and with more than seventy wineries in the region, you can rest assured that you will have plenty of opportunity to taste them.
Stellenbosch, South Africa
South African wine is sometimes described as part New World and part European in style. The combination of powerful fruit flavours and a sophisticated elegance would seem to back this up. Where better to judge for yourself than in Stellenbosch, South Africa’s best known wine region, which is not far from the spectacular city of Cape Town. Here, as well as tasting familiar grapes such as Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon, you will discover the South African specialities, Pinotage and Chenin Blanc.
Napa Valley, USA
Like everything else in America, wine tasting in the Napa Valley, California, is big and bold. Large wineries and international Champagne houses provide tastings and ‘wine museums’ in a slick and professional way rarely seen elsewhere. But you will steel find small independent cellar doors sitting alongside them where you can taste wine with the winemaker. Wine tasting in the Napa really is the best of both worlds.
Arguably the most famous wine region of them all, Champagne is synonymous the world over for its high quality sparkling wines. Touring Champagne, you will not only be able to taste some of the finest wines made anywhere in the world but you will also get to explore a region that is a byword for sophistication and celebration. Do you really need any more reasons to go? So start searching for flight deals and book some travel insurance and you could soon be touring in style.
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