If I haven’t made it clear, I seriously love good wine. One of my favorite things to do is travel to different wine regions around the world and sip my heart’s desires. Something about the beautiful landscapes and rolling hills of a vineyard puts me in a delightful mood – Or it could just be the wine talking. Either way, I’m content with a nice bottle of red (or white, I’m not particularly choosey). As a self-proclaimed wine connoisseur, I’ve made it my mission to check out the best vineyards this world has to offer. In that spirit, I’ve put together a list of all the MUST wine regions to visit for any wino wine lover like me.
We begin with the mother of all wine regions – The country of Georgia. The beginning of wine production can be traced back 8,000 years to the city of Kakheti, which makes Georgia the OG of winemaking. This major wine region is known for its historical sites, which includes the Alaverdi Monastery winery.
Note on visiting: Stay in Tbilisi; a major city located one hour away from the region.
Northern California (Wine Country)
One of the first prominent wine regions I checked off my list is none other than the United States’ Wine Country. Venturing one hour outside San Francisco, California to Napa or Sonoma, you’ll find over 400 wineries to satisfy your inner lush. But Wine Country has so much more to offer than wine. Really immersing yourself in the full experience requires dining at Michelin star restaurants and staying at world-class resorts and spas.
Alas, the Georgians may have invented winemaking, but the French have perfected it. They’ve done it so well; you’ll want to add at least two French wine regions to your list.
Sound familiar? If so, that’s because it has made a name for itself as a premier wine region. It’s the home of some of the most prized and expensive wines in the world and for a good reason. The French really do know how to make good wine.
Note on visiting: Don’t hole yourself up in Bordeaux with a belly full of wine. Check out the charming small town, St-Emilion, then take a two-hour train ride to Toulouse.
As implied, Champagne is known for the sparkling white wine that bears its name. Yes, we again have the French to thank for every celebration that includes a toast of the bubbly. When visiting, check out The Champagne House of Gosset, which was founded in 1584, and is known as the oldest producer still operating today.
Note on visiting: Paris is a two-hour ride away, so make this a day trip event.
One of the most notable regions and my personal favorite, thus far, has to be the Chianti region of Tuscany, Italy. As the largest classified wine region in Italy, Chianti boasts wine production of about 8 million cases of wine a year! It’s best known for its Chianti red wine and astonishing scenic views. Visiting the Castello Del Trebbio vineyard is a must!
Note on visiting: Florence, another Tuscan region, is an hour away, so make your visit to Chianti a day trip and stay in the bustling city of Florence.
As the second largest city after Lisbon, Porto is known for its Port wines. This seaside town not only boasts wine cellars all over; it’s recognized for incredible food, affordability, and beaches only a few hours away.
As one of the largest metropolitan areas of Argentina, the city of Mendoza houses the wine regions of Lujan de Cuyo and the Uco Valley. The Mendoza wine regions are known for their Malbec wines and may be one of the best wine regions for the adventurous traveler. Try out the Andes mountains for skiing in the winter and Aconcagua for hiking, rafting, and other sports.
While I haven’t made my way to all the prominent wine regions in the world, you better believe I’ll be crossing at least two more of them off my list in the year to come. Which wine regions are you interested in visiting? Leave a comment below!