The wine room and library, Bisate Lodge, Wilderness Safari, Rwanda

12 of the World’s Best Wine Destinations

Discover some of the most incredible vineyards around the world
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Published on: September 5th, 2017

Last updated: September 18th, 2023

Wine is more than just a drink – it’s a reflection of the land, culture and history of the place where it’s made. The best wine tours give us the opportunity to slow down, take a sip and appreciate our surroundings in a whole new way.

Wine tours are a wonderful way to explore a new place, often including visits to vineyards and cellars, tastings and pairings with local cuisine, and the chance to learn about the production process straight from the winemakers themselves.

Dozens of our favourite destinations have a fascinating wine culture, from classic spots like Bordeaux and the Douro Valley to unexpected places like Santorini and Morocco. Whether you’re headed to Europe, Latin America, Africa or Australia, wine can be the starting point for a truly epic trip. To help you get inspired, here are 12 of the world’s best wine destinations.

1. Alentejo, Portugal

Alentejo might not be the first place that comes to mind when Portuguese wine is mentioned, but it certainly deserves a seat at the table. In fact, this unassuming region produces some of the country’s finest wines.

Old vineyards with red wine grapes in the Alentejo wine region in Portugal

Évora is among our favourite off-the-beaten-track destinations in Portugal, full of ancient architecture and local charm. Stay at São Lourenço do Barrocal, an old farming village that’s been transformed into a luxury hotel, and tour the surrounding vineyards.

A vine draped pergola at Sao Lourenco do Barrocal in Portugal

2. Douro Valley, Portugal

Portugal’s classic wine region, the Douro Valley is a treasure trove of traditional winemaking. This is where the famous fortified port wine originates, along with dry red wines made from the same native grapes.

Vineyards and Landscape of the Douro river region in Portugal

Just inland from Porto, this region is defined by the mighty Douro River and the verdant hills, vineyards and villages on its shores. One of our favourite places to stay here is Six Senses Douro Valley where you can be fully immersed in the environment and enjoy nightly tastings in the Wine Library.

Six Senses Douro Valley surrounded by lush greenery

3. Bordeaux, France

This may be the world’s best-known wine region – and for good reason. Bordeaux is an elegant city surrounded by thousands of wineries. At Les Sources de Caudalie, you can enjoy vinotherapy spa treatments along with the usual tastings and tours.

Vineyards near Bordeaux in France

On the other side of France, you’ll find the lesser-known region of Alsace and its Route des Vins (Wine Route). Bordering Germany and Switzerland, it blends the cultures of all three countries in its distinctive wine and food.

The wine village of Wihr-au-Val in the Munster valley

4. Santorini, Greece

This Greek island may be most recognisable for its blue-domed buildings and crescent-shaped caldera. But Santorini is also home to ancient grape vines growing in volcanic soil, resulting in entirely one-of-a-kind wines.

Grape field at Santorini of the Cyclades islands in Greece.

Choose to book into Canaves Epitome in Oia for epic views and excellent cuisine. There’s nothing quite like sipping a glass of Santorini wine while watching the sunset over the Aegean.

5. Barossa, Australia

Located in South Australia, the Barossa Valley is an idyllic destination for wine lovers. Its gorgeous green vineyards seem straight out of a postcard, and it boasts a warm climate that cools off in the surrounding hills.

Barossa Valley Vineyard Sunset

This region has some of the oldest vineyards in Australia. It’s best known for shiraz, although many other types of wine are made here – and at The Louise, you can sample them all.

6. Hunter Valley, Australia

Hunter Valley is an ideal place to dive into Australian wine culture. Located in New South Wales, it’s known for its breathtaking scenery, rolling farmland and stunning beaches – as well as world-renowned wineries producing semillon, shiraz and more.

Hunter valley kangaroos in the vineyard

Escape into the bushland at Spicers Vineyards Estate, explore private vineyards and soak in the serenity of this exclusive location.

Spicers Vineyards in New South Wales

7. Marlborough Sounds, New Zealand

New Zealand is not only a land of stunning natural beauty, but also a fabulous destination for wine lovers. Two-thirds of the country’s wine comes from the South Island’s Marlborough Sounds, which is highly regarded for its sauvignon blanc.

Viticulture in Marlborough, New Zealand, South Island

When visiting the country’s most renowned wine region, there’s no better place to stay than the Marlborough Lodge: a country estate boasting acres of vineyards.

Biking at Marlborough Lodge.

8. Cape Winelands, South Africa

For some of the best wines in the southern hemisphere, head to the Winelands of South Africa. Not far from Cape Town you’ll find Babylonstoren: an immense wine estate with Cape-Dutch architecture and 200 hectares of vineyards, orchards and gardens.

Explore the Cape Winelands on the Wine Tram

Babylonstoren is a fantastic hotel for families; kids can bake bread or enjoy ice cream tastings while adults tour the cellars. Try biltong (dried meat), which pairs surprisingly well with wine.

Gardens and vineyards at Babylonstoren.

9. Meknes, Morocco

There’s nothing new about Morocco’s viniculture; wine has been made here for millennia. Meknes is the obvious choice for wine-focussed travellers, as it’s home to many of the country’s best wineries.

Vineyards in Meknes, Morocco

Take advantage of your time in Meknes to explore its extensive olive groves and visit the nearby Roman ruins of Volubilis as well.

Ruins of the roman city of Volubilis near Meknes

10. Salta, Argentina

Argentina is widely renowned for its malbec, much of which is made in Mendoza. But Salta is an equally compelling destination – especially if you want to diverge from the usual itinerary.

Vineyards in Salta, with snow covered peaks in the background.

Located in the northwest, Salta is a gateway to the Andes and the dramatic surrounding landscapes. Its high altitudes and low latitudes balance out to create perfect conditions for producing high-quality wines.

Close up on bunches of green grapes on a vine.

11. Wine Regions, Chile

The wine regions of Chile are spread out around Santiago. They include the Maipo Valley and Casablanca Valley, which are known for cabernet sauvignon, syrah and carménère – a grape that’s grown almost exclusively in this country.

Vineyards in the Maipo Valley bathed in golden light.

These regions offer many sensational places to stay; at Vik Chile you’ll find avant-garde style and state-of-the-art winemaking, while Casa Real promises rich history and traditional luxury.

The vineyards at Casa Real Hotel.

12. Carmelo, Uruguay

Uruguay may be a small country, but its burgeoning wine culture is enormously impressive. In the peaceful region of Carmelo, you’ll find family-run wineries and 100 acres of vineyards.

Young man riding his mountain bike

Beyond Carmelo, the entire country of Uruguay is ripe for wine-based adventures. Visit the striking Viña Edén near Punta del Este, indulge in a meal at Frances Mallmann’s Garzon and explore the vibrant cities of Montevideo and Colonia del Sacramento.

Vineyards in Uruguay

Trip Inspiration

Get inspired with our wine region example trips and then get in touch to plan your own adventure

Luxury wine region accommodation

There are many incredible places to stay in wine regions around the world. Here are some of our favourites, handpicked by our travel designers:

Putting a tour together...

Whatever you want from your wine-focused trip, our team of expert travel designers are ready to help.