Feature: Luxury wine tours around the world

Monday, 16 May 2013 8:23 AM

Wine – the drink of the ancients. One of the oldest alcoholic beverages on earth, and possibly the most refined drink in the world. For thousands of years the drink has been perfected and crafted, and in the eyes of many is the epitome of luxury. There has never been more choice when it comes to gourmet tours of the world’s most premier wine regions. From the Old World to the New, we have searched out some of the finest on the market so you don’t have to...

Bordeaux

The stalwart of wine-making, the French have been perfecting their craft for generations, with a range of differing regional wine-making practices and grape varieties being passed down through the ages. Bordeaux is the premier “mythical” destination and its name evokes images of terraces of manicured vineyards and picturesque chateaus. Cellar Tours offer a luxurious nine-day tour through the region, which has been designed for wine lovers who appreciate the finer things in life. Giving you the chance to visit wine estates like Carbonnieux, which dates back to the 12th century when it was founded by Benedictine monks, you will lunch and dine at fine restaurants such as the Table du Lavoir restaurant, and stay in five-star hotels and chateaus.


A private Mercedes-driving chauffeur will pick you up from the airport and shuttle you around the region where you will feast on local oysters, taste numerous wines, and feast on homemade strawberry crepes and jambon for breakfast. Visit medieval wine caves and explore underground churches before eating scallops and foie gras de canard with black truffle essence in the Michelin starred Hostellerie Plaisance. Go to war with a French vs USA blind wine tasting, and take a boat tour of the Arcachon Peninsular. Prices start at £441 per day.

Australia

With the advent of new world wines, the sometimes snobbish outlook and preference for traditional European bottles has completely changed the industry. Nowhere is this truer than in Australia, which is now the fourth largest exporter of wine around the world. So experience the varieties on offer with a tour with Wine Tours Australia and New Zealand, and take the 14-day trip through the vine growing regions of the Hunter Valley, Clare Valley, and Barossa Valley. Mixing in wildlife and sightseeing trips, marvel at the wallabies and sea lions on Kangaroo Island, off the coast of Adelaide.

Take a tour through Sydney, visit the Mint & Hyde Barracks and be flabbergasted at the postcard-esque perfection of Sydney Harbour. Also included are extensive tours of Melbourne and Adelaide, which will allow you to appreciate the historical sights and trendy shopping districts such as Chapel Street. The tour includes private transfers, accommodation in deluxe hotels, meals, wine tastings, and scheduled boat cruises.

Tuscany

This cultured corner of Italy houses some of the finest works of art in the world, from the fountain of Neptune in Florence to the grand architectural splendour of the Cathedral of Pisa, (famed for its Leaning Tower). The rolling hills and wild coast are also home to some of the world’s finest wine varieties, such as Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino, and the delectable desert wine Vin Santo. So experience it for yourself with Italian Wine Tours, and take the nine-day tour from Pisa to Florence. 

The excursion passes through the atmospheric medieval towns and lush countryside of the Etruscan Coast, and dabbles in the wines of the Era Valley. Take in the mixture of Etruscan, Roman, and Medieval architecture of Volterra and taste the fresh and salty white wines of Montescudaio and Monteregio It is a cultural tour too, so as well as supping on Florence wines, there will also be opportunities for taking in the city’s art, history, and fine-shopping.

South African Cape

Mix a safari with the towering landscape of L’Ormarins while you delve into the culture and history of South African wines. Landing in Cape Town, the detailed tour of Arblaster and Clarke Wine Tours Worldwide offers fine food, unrivalled scenery, and glorious dry weather. The tour starts in Cape Town in a luxury hotel on the waterfront, followed by a tasting at a Constantian estate. Next you will explore the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve and Boulders Park to see hundreds of penguins waddling along.

Wines from Stellenbosch and the Worcester and Robertson are all tasted, and you can look forward to a lunch with Hamilton Russell, who pioneered Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in South Africa. Fish barbeques and bush picnics are included in the package, as is seven nights in four star guesthouses, an air conditioned coach, and a guided tour. Prices start from £2,400 per person.

Taking a wine tour can be a great way to learn more about this fascinating and historic process. From beginners to seasoned sommeliers, a trip into new lands will further fuel your passion and appreciation of this ancient drink..
 

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Surrounded by crumbling red mountains and giant towering cacti, seems an unlikely scene to host an array of vineyards, producing some of Argentina’s best wines, yet this exactly where I have come to go wine tasting – in the small town of Cafayate.

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Tired of serving your family the same dishes over and over? Or perhaps your family is tired of your signature dish. Well, to help find new inspiration, we have sampled our top learn-to-cook holidays around the globe.

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If you are passionate about wine, you can book a custom-designed tour of France, Portugal or Italy that will take you behind the vines of the world's best wine regions. BKWine is offering two classic wine travel packages to book this October.

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When it comes to fine dining, many people look no further than the refined and sophisticated cities of Western Europe. Combining ancient architecture, world-class museums and some of the most luxurious restaurants in the world, you can't go wrong.

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Combine love of wine with exotic destination

If you love nothing more than to sit back with a glass of your favourite wine then combining this passion with a trip to an exotic location could provide the perfect holiday. HotelsCombined.com has listed the top ten wine destinations worldwide.

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