Globe-trotting and vino go hand in hand, it’s as simple as that. At least that’s what any wine aficionado would maintain! Whether cruising the coast of France or sailing the shores of Australia, there’s nothing quite as enjoyable as indulging in a glass of local wine. Azamara is one cruise line that definitely appreciates a fine drop, and is offering its passengers a myriad of wine experiences across the globe. If this sounds like your kind of getaway, read on for our top picks.
Delightful Havens and Vineyards of France, Spain and Portugal
European drops are renowned as the finest on the planet and this 14 night voyage immerses passengers in the heart of wine making country. The small scale, intimate feel of Azamara vessels means passengers are able to disembark in the centre of Bordeaux and start exploring the region’s world famous wine culture right away. For those who want to really get a feel for the region’s history signing up for a Land Discoveries excursion to UNESCO listed St. Émilion is an unforgettable experience.
16 Night Australia and New Zealand Voyage
Sample the very best wines that Australia has to offer on this 16 night voyage that kicks off in cosmopolitan Sydney, a wonderful place to toast to a trip overflowing with Australia’s legendary wines. In Melbourne the Countryside, Birds and Vintage Train tour is a fantastic way to experience rural Victoria and explore the beautiful Yarra Valley wine country. The call to New Zealand’s Picton port is the perfect opportunity for passengers to join the Wineries of Marlborough tour, which showcases the region’s acclaimed Sauvignon Blanc. Napier is yet another chance to sign up for the Wineries of Hawkes Bay tour while a stop in Tauranga definitely calls for participation in the Hidden Gardens of Tauranga & Mills Reef Winery Lunch. Tasmania is one of Australia’s hidden wine making gems and the Historic Hobart, Countryside and Winery is the ideal way to uncover the state’s secrets. On-board, passengers will also be treated to a selection of hand-picked Australian wines available at restaurants and bars. Think the famous Hunter Valley Semillon of New South Wales, as well as Shiraz, Chardonnay, Verdelho and more. The well-stocked ship cellars mean passengers can continue to sip on their favourite drop long after they’ve cruised out of port!
Costa Brava to Cinque Terra
Sparkling Cava wine embodies the lively spirit of Spain and this cruise is the perfect way to soak it all in. The wine originates from the Mediterranean Coast which makes Barcelona a fabulous port to enjoy a glass or two of local bubbly. Roses and Girona are celebrated for their delicate rose drops while Bilbao’s Tempranillo is famed for its full bodied, high tannin wine that makes a luxurious accompaniment to rich meat.
Greek Canal to the Acropolis: Adriatic and Greek Isles
Scenic, cultural and wonderfully warm, the Adriatic and Greek Isles are the stuff that Mediterranean cruise dreams are made of. Croatia’s sun kissed Dalmatia region is famous for its light, fruity white wines that complement freshly caught seafood while the port cities of Dubrovnik and Split are chic places to enjoy a glass or two at a high end restaurant. While docked in Santorini the Village of Oia & Winery Visit shore excursion gives passengers a chance to gaze at the picturesque white washed village, as well as sample local wine and mezes.
7 Night Tuscany and Italian Rivera Voyage
As the largest wine producer on the planet Italy is a must visit destination for any vino lover. Tuscany is home to some of the world’s oldest wine-producing regions in the world and is famous for Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino, and the well-known white, Vernaccia di San Gimignano. For an utterly immersive experience Azamara is now inviting passengers to sign on for an exclusive Insider Access tour where they can see first-hand how a local Lucca family bottles one of the region’s finest drops.
11 Night Argentina and Brazil
Argentina is South America’s largest wine producer and this cruise gives passengers a chance to get up close and personal with the industry and its famous Malbec wines. Uruguay’s Tannat varietal is rapidly gaining international acclaim, with the scenic wineries of Montevideo and Punte del Este making for terrific day trips.
12 Night Summer Baltic Russia Voyage
If you love Germany’s sweet Rieslings this cruise is sure to whet your palate. The UNESCO listed medieval town of Lubeck boasts a wine making history that can be traced back to Hanseatic times, with the local Rotspon wooden barrelled wine a must try tipple.
7 Night Sicily and Malta Voyage
With its sultry climate and rich soil Sicilian wines are rich, dark and fabulously fruity. The Nero d’Avola variety is a local delicacy while the region’s long- established vineyards are also famous for their super smooth Cabernet Sauvignons and Chardonnays. Of course, dessert wines are Sicily’s real specialty, with sweet fruits and fragrant oils largely influencing the region’s love for syrupy wine.
Images sourced via Flickr Creative Commons. Credits: John Kroll, Erik Söderström, Chris Gin, Brandon Burns, Jordan Confino