Are you searching for the best wine destinations in the world? If you’re a wine enthusiast you’ll know the great pleasure gained from tasting a diverse variety of wines. So, if you know your Merlot from your Malbec, perhaps you’d like to include a little wine tasting on your next getaway? Indeed, wine tourism has gained popularity in recent years. What could be better than discovering new grape varieties or tasting your all-time favourites in the very place they are produced? Whether you’re partial to a chilled glass or white or a full-bodied red, discover the best wine destinations in the world, as chosen by Exoticca!
Nestled in the foothills of the Andes, Mendoza is among the most prestigious wine regions in South America. In fact, the high-altitude situation of Mendoza’s vineyard makes for some incredibly unique and successful wines. Of course, the most popular wine produced here is Argentinian Malbec, but there’s a diverse range of other grapes to discover! The Mendoza wine region can be divided into five subregions. These include Maipu, Luján de Cuyo, Uco Valley, San Rafael and East Mendoza. Each subregion is famed for its own varieties. For Malbecs, Luján de Cuyo is the biggest producer. Although Mendoza is famed for its full-bodied red wines, white varieties are also available, namely Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. With breathtaking views of the Andes and a focus on eco-tourism, Mendoza is surely one of the best wine destinations in the world!
Cape Winelands, South Africa
Home to over 500 wineries, the Cape Winelands are a must-visit wine-producing region within easy reach of Cape Town. The rolling valleys of this region are dotted with historic towns and farms alongside some of the best-known vineyards in the country. The sheltered conditions, a result of the surrounding mountains, are perfect for cultivating grape varieties. Chenin Blanc, Cinsault and Pinotage are among the most renowned indigenous wines. In fact, wine tourism is so popular here that towns such as Stellenbosch, Franschhoek, Paarl offer a selection of different wine routes to explore. Some of the world-famous wineries to visit here include Boschendal, Babylonstoren and Lanzerac, among others.
With the perfect combination of sunshine and rain, the vineyards of Tuscany are one of the best wine destinations in the world. Indeed, the rolling hills of Tuscany are one of the postcard images of the Italian countryside. With vineyards and olive groves for as far as the eye can see, the eternal romance of this Italian wine region is irresistible. A farmhouse stay is a perfect way to immerse yourself in the gastronomic heritage of this region. When it comes to wines, Chianti reigns supreme. Nevertheless, varieties also produced here include Brunello di Montalcino and Vin Santo.
Synonymous with wine, the French region of Bordeaux is heaven for wine lovers. Hailed as one of the most prestigious wine destinations in the world, Bordeaux is famous for its Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot blends. Emulated around the world, the wines produced here are legendary. Therefore, a trip to Bordeaux can be considered a journey back to the source! Furthermore, reds, dry or sweet whites, rosés, light reds and sparkling whites are all produced in Bordeaux, so there’s something for every palette. Follow the Bordeaux Wine Route to explore the region’s wineries or head to the Cité du Vin, a wine-focused museum dedicated to educating visitors on the production and wine heritage of Bordeaux.
Douro Valley, Portugal
Famed for its production of port wine, Douro Valley is among the oldest demarcated wine regions on earth. Recognisable by its terraced vineyards, the Douro Valley is one of the best wine destinations in the world. The port wine produced by these wineries is transported downriver to Porto. Here, the wine is aged in the cellars of Vila Nova de Gaia. The best place to go wine tasting in Portugal, the wineries of the Douro Valley are numerous. Day trips are popular. For a deeper dive into the wine culture here, consider staying the in small towns of Pinhão or Amarante. Furthermore, whilst visiting Portugal, wine tasting in the Algarve is another unmissable experience!
La Rioja, Spain
Situated in northern Spain, La Rioja is one of the most famous producers of red wine on earth. Everything revolves around wine here. Unsurprising, since La Rioja is one of the best wine destinations in the world! Both old and more modern wineries can be visited here, and the regional capital of Logroño is a great place to base yourself for further exploration into the Ebro Valley. Furthermore, many of the wineries in La Rioja offer tasting menus to showcase the regional foods that pair perfectly with the wines produced here. Undoubtedly, the best place to go wine tasting in Spain.
Already dreaming of your next vineyard visit? Discover our full selection of extraordinary trips on our website. From vineyard visits to gastronomic tours, there’s something for everyone!