A day or two spent in one of the world’s greatest wine regions is an adventure every traveller can truly appreciate. In addition to visits to premium wineries to sample the best wines available and learn the art of winemaking, touring the best wine producers on the planet come with a stunning backdrop of sprawling vineyards and picturesque landscapes.
If you’re thinking of spending your next vacation in a destination where enjoying a glass of great wine with good food amid breathtaking scenery is the norm, try visiting some of the most spectacular grape regions known to man. Below are wine locations that are guaranteed to provide you with unforgettable wine experiences.
Boasting many wine regions, France ranks high among the top wine producing countries in the world. Each wine region is known for its signature wine and Burgundy, an easy train ride from Paris, is popular for its world-famous red wine, Pinot Noir.
At the heart of Burgundy is the historic walled city of Beaune, host to the Hospices de Beaune Wine Auction, one of the most prestigious charity wine sales in the world. Providing countless opportunities to acquire exceptional and rare vintage Burgundy wines, the annual event attracts wine collectors hailing from different parts of the globe. Burgundy also has a well-preserved grape cultivation and winemaking tradition that dates back to the High Middle Period, the very reason why a part of the region is included in the esteemed list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Italy is currently the world’s largest wine producer and home to more or less 20 great wine producing regions. If you are looking to experience the best of Italian wine culture, then you should head straight to Tuscany, one of the most coveted wine regions in all of Italy.
Tuscany is famous for producing Chianti, one of the most famous Italian wines. When exploring Tuscany, particularly Chianti area, don’t forget to spend time in the historic city Siena, to enjoy spectacular wine tastings and tours at its most prominent wineries.
Home to one of the most popular wines in the world, France’s province of Champagne is a must-visit for true oenophiles. The sparkling wine champagne that’s always top of mind for feasts and celebrations, is exclusively produced in this wine region.
In 2015, Champagne’s hillsides, houses, and cellars were deemed “culturally significant” by UNESCO and consequently granted world heritage status.
Famous for a rich and colourful wine heritage, Catalonia’s wine production accounts for a fourth of all wines produced in Spain. Blessed with a Mediterranean climate, the wine region produces many high quality wines, among them the world-renowned Cava, a sparkling wine made from two or three different varieties of native Spanish grapes and produced in the traditional method.
Argentina may not be as popular as the world’s classic wine destinations like France and Italy but the country is recognized as a major wine producer, thanks to its robust wine industry. One of its premier wine regions is Mendoza, a region situated between the foothills of the Andean Mountains.
Wineries in Mendoza produce the popular Malbec wines, the vibrant, intense coloured, fruity red wines that put Argentina on the wine map as a noteworthy wine country.
Barossa Valley, Australia
Located 35 miles northeast of Adelaide and easily accessible by car, Barossa Valley is one of the most notable wine regions in the Land Down Under. Barossa Valley is popular among wine enthusiasts and connoisseurs for producing premium quality Shiraz wines and reislings.
Almost all of its 37 wineries offer sightseeing tours and tastings and a must-see in the region is the Seppeltsfield Winery, one of the oldest and most popular wineries in Australia. Seppeltsfield is famous for the century-old Para Vintage Tawny Port that’s priced at more than AU$1,000 per 375ml bottle. The winery is the only place in the world that is able to release a commercially available 100-year-old vintage annually.
An under-the-radar destination that’s just waiting to be discovered, Moldova is a tiny wine producing country nestled between Romania and Ukraine. With a viticulture and winemaking history that dates back thousands of years, it is understandable why it produces some of the best sauvignon blancs, chardonnays, cabernets, and pinot noir wines you’ll ever taste in your life.
Codru is a wine region in Moldova where you’ll find majority of the country’s most developed vineyards and wineries. The wine region is also home to Milestii Mici, the world’s largest wine cellar, with close to million bottles of quality wines in its collection. Milestii Mici’s underground limestone cellars stretch 200 kilometres but so far, only 55 kilometres of the tunnels are used for storing wine.
Yarra Valley, Australia
Just about 45 kilometres from Melbourne’s city centre, the Yarra Valley is a diverse wine region known for its prestigious wineries and breathtaking landscapes. Boasting over 80 cellar doors housing superb wine collections, it is considered one of world’s top wine producing regions.
Not to be overlooked during your Yarra Valley tour are the boutique wineries where you can experience great food and wine pairings in a magnificent vineyard setting.
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By: Brendelyn Balaga