Budding wine connoisseurs with an interest in the production of their favourite tipple should seize the opportunity to visit some of the most beautiful vineyards around the globe on their next exciting all-inclusive cruise getaway. Shore excursions to vineyards and wineries, located within the stunning wine regions of the world, are becoming ever-more popular amongst travellers with a palette for claret. So where are the best wineries and vineyards to visit on a cruise? We have compiled a list of the finest wine regions around the world, so you can observe wonderful vine-clad hillsides and sample the tempting products on your next cruise.
Situated in south western France, Bordeaux is home to some of the country’s most famous chateaus and wineries, thoroughly deserving its place in our best wine regions list. The region is the largest wine-growing area in France, with around 8,500 vineyards covering approximately 120,000 hectares of land and average vintages producing more than 700 million bottles of wine. The majority of Bordeaux wineries, nearly 90%, produce red wine, also known as claret. The remainder of wineries make sweet and dry white as well as sparkling and rose wines.
Bordeaux’s wine region is divided into several smaller subregions, including Saint-Emilion, Graves, Pomerol and Medoc, each with their own collection of picturesque vineyards and quaint chateaus. Tourists are encouraged to get involved with the many fabulous wine tours on offer across these regions at the profusion of vineyards and wineries scattered throughout Bordeaux, most of which offer wine tasting sessions and classes on top of a tour of the chateaux. Surprisingly, some wineries even offer family-friendly tours, with activities to keep the children occupied and happy whilst parents enjoy learning more about the area’s wine production.
Next on our best wine regions list is Tarragona, located on the Mediterranean coast of north eastern Spain. The larger wine region of Tarragona is split up into three smaller regions; Camp de Tarragona, parts of the Priorat and parts of the Ribera d’Ebre. The wine region’s vineyards are mostly located along the coast, stretching inland toward the district’s border with the province of Lleida. Around three quarters of the grapes produced in Tarragona are white, most of which are used to produce cava wine, for which the area is most famous.
A large portion of wineries in Tarragona produce modern red, white and rose wines and tours of the wineries are available across the region. Whether it is the history of production or the tasting sessions that you are most interested in, visitors are welcome to wander the vineyards and listen to expert guides talk about the area’s famous wine production process.
Tuscany is one of the world’s most famous wine producing regions, forever associated with stunning natural beauty and utter sophistication. Situated on the coast of central Italy, the region’s viticulture dates back to the 8th century BC, which makes it one of the oldest wine districts on our best wine regions list. A range of different wines are produced in Tuscany, at the many vineyards and wineries located across this beautiful part of Italy, including award-winning Super Tuscans, which are not recognised within Italy’s wine classification system but are still very popular.
Tuscany is the ideal place to experience a rich wine culture for yourself. An excursion to one of the many vineyards and wineries scattered across the region’s picture perfect landscape is essential for wine enthusiasts. Take part in tasting sessions or simply stroll through the vineyards at your own pace – the choice is yours!
Adeliade in South Australia has the perfect climate for producing high quality wines, which has propelled the region to the forefront of Australia’s wine culture. World famous wine regions including the Adelaide Hills, Barossa and McLaren Vale are the pride of Australia; covered with serene vineyards and elegant wineries where excellent wines are produced throughout the year.
Head to Adelaide Hills to find a plethora of vineyards and wineries; a total of 90 in fact, many of which offer for fascinating wine tours. The wine tours of the Adelaide Hills incorporate a wide range of practices to occupy and delight guests, including master classes, food and wine matching sessions, comparative tastings amongst many other great activities. A shore excursion to the Adelaide Hills allows tourists the opportunity to experience a range of local wines, from Sauvignon Blanc to Chardonnay.
Cape Town, South Africa
A wonderful collection of vineyards and wine regions are located just outside the city of Cape Town in South Africa. Wine routes through the vineyards of South Africa offer the perfect opportunity to experience the region’s world-class wines, magnificent natural beauty and a friendly ambience. The birthplace of South Africa’s wine culture is said to be Constantia Valley, home to some of the oldest estates in the country. Only a short drive from the centre of Cape Town, Constantia Valley is ideally located for tourists to explore.
Several other fabulous wine routes near Cape Town are also available to wine-loving tourists. Some of the most popular routes include the Durbanville Valley, the Helderberg route, the Franschhoek route and the Stellenbosch route, near to historic town of Stellenbosch. These splendid wine tours also incorporate range of other activities to suit everyone’s tastes, including spa treatments, bird-watching, cheese-making and horse-riding, so even those not interested in the local wine culture will be thoroughly entertained.