We just added an Advanced Wine Search Tool to WineTravelr.com, giving you the possibility to search by price, varietal, country and vintage. We will be adding more options to this soon (such as searching on region or in taste notes), and also make changes to the standard search. Furthermore, there are plans to give similar search options for the travel section, for example letting you search for car rental, hotel or flights – and these will be added one by one in cooperation with experts in each area.

Looking forwards to any comments on the new search options!

Happy wine and travel everyone!

Tarija with wine tour (62)Not many people would expect Bolivia to be in a list of great wine destinations, but with the proximity to Salta in Argentina you easily start understanding why the region would be well positioned for wine growers. The Tarija region has a population of only 12000 people, and being situated at 1900 meters altitude you can imagine this being a great place to travel for adventurers and anyone who wants see undiscovered wine places. With 2500 hectares of grapevines, and 6000 more planned, it certainly looks like Bolivia has a future of growing importance.

I would suggest visiting to La Concepcion, Kohlberg and Magnus wineries for the most interesting experiences. Although you might not find the excellence of tourism luxury when compared to for example Argentina, going to Tarija is bound to be an adventure like no other on this list – and you would have the rights to brag about going to a top “undiscovered wine region”.

This is the tenth and last part in this series about amazing and beautiful wine regions to visit in South America. For more wine places, go through the backlogs to read about wine places in France and Spain. Next, we promise you a look at the amazing wine regions in New Zealand, followed by the beautiful spaces in Oz. Enjoy!


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Serras GaúchasSouth America saw a real flooding of Jesuit missionaries who started organized wine production across the continent, and Brazil got their fair share. Many Germans and Italians ended up in the Serra Gaúcha region in the 19th century, with the Italians early on claiming the highlands 50 years after the Germans arrived in the lowlands. This gave the region a unique blend of culture, architecture and food, which you can still find in the picturesque cities. Especially the Italians brought wine making traditions, and this heritage is celebrated annually in the Festa de Uva festival in Caxias do Sul

For a great wine experience, go to Vinícola Vaccaro to see a mix of wine loving homes turned into tourist spots, Nova Alancia for chats with “The Brotherhood of Wine” and Vinicola Aurora for the largest winery in the country. If you want to visit many wineries in a short time, go to Vale dos Vinhedos for a tour of 25 really interesting winery visits.

 

This is the ninth part of 10 about amazing and beautiful wine regions to visit in South America, a series which has been previously summarized in GotSaga. For more wine places, go through the backlogs to read about wine places in France and Spain. After South America, we promise you the world, and a look at the amazing wine regions in New Zealand. Enjoy!


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EnsaladaBetween the mighty South American powers of Argentina and Brazil, you will find Uruguay, a country of only 3.5 million inhabitants where vintners have decided to compete on quality instead of price – often resulting in surprises for tasters across the world. Despite the proximity to other great wine countries Argentina, Chile and Brazil, Uruguay has a wine growing climate more similar to Bordeaux, France or in New Zealand – and when you look at the map you’ll see that much of the wine from Argentina and Chile comes from areas near the Andes mountains, far away from Uruguay.

The greatest concentration of vineyards in Uruguay is in the Montevideo area near the southern coast. A number of wineries in the region have come together and created the ‘Wine Roads’, where visitors can visit nice bodegas to try the local wines and sample Uruguayan food. For some excellent local Tannat wine, visit Bodegas Bouza where you can combine the tasting with a superb lunch, and then continue to Bodegas del Viento – but don’t forget checking if they will be open before you take the time to get there. Other lovely places to stop for some sampling are Juanicó Winery, Los Cerros de San Juan and Bodega Marichal.

This is the eighth part of 10 about amazing and beautiful wine regions to visit in South America, a series which has been previously summarized in GotSaga. For more wine places, go through the backlogs to read about wine places in France and Spain. After South America, we promise you the world, and a look at the amazing wine regions in New Zealand. Enjoy!


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La RiojaEver since the Spanish missionaries arrived in Argentina a few hundred years ago, the La Rioja region had the feeling of an amazing wine destiny, and you might wonder if those monks thought of it when bringing the Rioja name from Spain in the 16th century. In an area which is almost like a desert, you will find the third largest wine region of Argentina, giving some amazing wines to the world.

The most important part of La Rioja is Chilecito Valley, with excellent wine growing climate conditions. This is especially great for the common Bonarda grapes, but also Torrontés, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Chardonnay vines are thriving.

If you plan on going to La Rioja, I would suggest starting your tour in the city of La Rioja. There you’ll find a number of interesting historical monuments, plazas, churches and other interesting landmarks – often with a strong European influence. If you enjoy festivals and have a free choice on when to visit, visit the city in March for the Festival del Vinador and celebrate local vintners with dance, wine tasting and music.
La Rioja

This is the seventh part of 10 about amazing and beautiful wine regions to visit in South America, a series which has been previously summarized in GotSaga. For more wine places, go through the backlogs to read about wine places in France and Spain. After South America, we promise you the world, and a look at the amazing wine regions in New Zealand. Enjoy!



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Zamba del riego

With an average altitude of 1700 meter above sea level and 300 annual sunny days, Salta has some of the highest altitudes in the world of wine. One of the sub-regions – the one we would most heartily recommend – is the mountainous and picturesque subregion of Cafayete. Despite the region having altitudes among the highest on the planet for wine growing, you actually still get some of the most suitable climates for viticulture in the world.

Considering the unusual conditions, many adventure travellers (who also love their wine) consider the Salta wine region their favourite wine destination in the world. If you love mountains and wine, grab your oxygen masks and climb up to the El Arenal vineyards – situated at 3 111 metres, having the current world record when it comes to altitude for vineyards.

This is the sixth part of 10 about amazing and beautiful wine regions to visit in South America, a series which has been previously summarized in GotSaga. For more wine places, go through the backlogs to read about wine places in France and Spain. After South America, we promise you the world, and a look at the amazing wine regions in New Zealand. Enjoy!


 


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Rio NegroIf you love sparkling wine, and perhaps enjoy a cooler climate, the Rio Negro wine region is probably a great destination for you. Just like in other Argentinean wine regions, many wineries have converted buildings into hotels and inns following the wine tourism boom, to let you experience the combination of great wine at the source with great living spaces. You can however also find Pinot Noir and Merlot wines in a European style in the windy and dry wine Rio Negro region – where the climate allows for more organic wine products and lets growers stay away from agrochemicals.

For a great wine experience and education, I would recommend visiting the Bodega Humberto Canale, which combines a century of wine producing knowledge with modern techniques; the Bodega Estepa with their wide variety of excellent wines, growing vines on both sides of the river in non-traditional picturesque vineyards


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This is the fourth part of 10 about amazing and beautiful wine regions to visit in South America, a series which has been previously summarized in GotSaga. For more wine places, go through the backlogs to read about wine places in France and Spain. After South America, we promise you the world, and a look at the greatest wine destinations in New Zealand. Enjoy!

Mendoza Wine CountryThe Mendoza region is now one of the top tourist destinations in Argentina. This was the first wine region I heard of in the country, and still the one I hear mentioned most often. Mendoza also has by far the highest amount of wine production in the country with 80% being produced here, as well as the longest history of wine making. There are around 1500 wineries in the region, divided into the five sub-regions Lujan de Cuyo, Uco Valley, Maipú (sometimes referred to as ‘The Centre’), San Rafael in the south and Rivadavia in the east. Lujan de Cuyo is considered being the “home of Malbec”, and I would highly recommend going there for anyone who enjoys the Malbec wines – I know I enjoyed it! You would also find a lot of Cabernet Sauvignon, as well as some Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Syrah being grown in the region

Besides being the main wine producing region of the country, Mendoza is also a haven for adventure travelers – with world class hiking, biking, fishing, rafting and skiing, all within two hours flight from Buenos Aires, or 50 minutes from Santiago, the capital of Chile. If you enjoy festivals, you might love the Mendoza wine festival in March

 


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This is the third part of 10 about great wine regions to visit in South America, a series which has been previously summarized in GotSaga. For more wine places, go through the backlogs to read about wine places in France and Spain. After South America, we promise you the world, and a look at the greatest wine destinations in New Zealand. Enjoy!

Casablanca ValleyIf you love white wine and you’re looking for a good experience in Chile, this might be the top pick for you. If you start out from Chile, you can easily manage the Casablanca Valley in Aconcagua in a weekend, with many nice guesthouses and modern hotels in the region, and quite a few boutique wineries to discover, you could discover new flavours of white grapes that you didn’t even know existed.

Not until the 1980’s did the Chileans start growing vines in Casablanca Valley, but the crisp, fresh wines from this coastal cool climate wine region soon caught the wine experts attention. I would definitely recommend a visit to the William Cole vineyards, Kingston Family vineyards and Casas del Bosque – and perhaps treat yourself to a stay at Casablanca Wine & Spa.


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This is the second part of 10 about amazing wine regions to visit in South America, a series which has been previously summarized in GotSaga. For more wine places, go through the backlogs to read about wine places in France and Spain. After South America, we promise you the world, and a look at the greatest wine destinations in New Zealand. Enjoy!

DSC_1448.JPG by bradleypjohnson, on FlickrAnother Central Valley subregion, the oldest wine-producing valley in Chile, just south of Santiago, extends from the Andes mountains to the middle of Central Valley. Despite the size of the region, you can however still have a great experience taking bicycle rides through the area, or easily rent a car to see visit different kinds of wineries.

You will find bold Cabernet Sauvignon of growing international popularity, from some of the largest and more traditional wineries in Chile, as well as a few excellent boutique wineries which have partnerships with French, Italian and US wine makers. I especially recommend visits to Antiyal, Passeos del Vino and Santa Rita, or perhaps Vina la Montaña – only an hour outside Santiago.