Joan Collins said - “Age is just a number. It’s totally irrelevant unless, of course, you happen to be a bottle of wine.” Queenstown sits at the door step and is the gateway to the world’s southernmost wine-producing region and has lots to surprise and tantalise your taste buds with. The Central Otago wine region spreads from the outskirts of Queenstown’s Wakatipu Basin through the picturesque terroir of Gibbston valley, through it’s dramatic gorges to the rolling vine-clad foothills of Bannockburn and beyond. The region itself is made up of six wine sub-regions each with their own climate soil and soil variations which is home to the best Pinot Noir grapes producing both aromatic and burgundy varieties.
For our tour, we have handpicked four of the finest wineries of this region, interspersed with sightseeing and stunning vistas enabling you to have an enthralling day out trying and sampling these wines amidst fabulous and spectacular scenery. We enjoy an excellent reputation, built-up over the years, and are confident that we will not only meet, but exceed your expectations.
Our first stop, 15 minutes out of Queenstown, near the shores of Lake Hayes and set against the backdrop of the Pisa ranges is Amisfield – one of the largest single estate vineyard in Central Otago. The first vines were planted in 1999 and almost 20 years on, they continue to thrive in this continental climate with its cold winters, hot summers and low rainfall. The winery is currently in the process towards organic certification and you will be tasting upto five different wines here.
KAWARAU BUNGY CENTRE
We then head to our next winery, and do a quick stop at AJ Hackett’s Bungy Jump and walk across the Kawarau River suspension bridge to witness New Zealand’s original bungy – where it all began “The World Home of Bungy”
GIBBSTON VALLEY VINEYARDS
It all about Good Wine. Good Food. Good Living. One of the region’s founding wineries, they are fully focused on handcrafting premium wines and honouring the traditions that have made them a world-renowned destination. Wines here are unrefined, unfiltered and sustainably produced. Explore unique and incredibly diverse surrounds. You will have the option of experiencing wine tasting in New Zealand’s largest Wine Cave (subject to availability and needs to be pre-booked – NZ $ 18.50 per person – additional charge)
GIBBSTON VALLEY CHEESE
Located in Queenstown’s Valley of Vines, high in the southern mountains, Gibbston Valley Cheese specializes in sheep, cow and goat milk cheeses crafted in the European style. The only cheesery among the wineries of the region, this unique experience offers tastings of the Gibbston Valley Cheese range.
MT. DIFFICULTY WINES
We then head to this stunning winery, travelling through the Kawerau Gorge – take time for stunning photo stop to Bannockburn, under the auspices of Mount Difficulty. Their uniqueness stems from this namesake mountain, under which a particular microclimate can be found. This area is at the southern end of the Cromwell Basin, has a narrow range of heat summation, large diurnal shifts, and long, cool, dry autumns. It is because of this our wines show a true reflection of place.
Here, besides Wine Tasting we will also stop for lunch (at your own cost) and enjoy great food and wine whilst while taking in the magical views of Bannockburn's dramatic rugged rock and thyme landscape.
WAITIRI CREEK VINEYARD & CARGO BREWERY
After a relaxing and leisurely lunch we start to make our way back to Queenstown and will stop at our last winery and brewery for the day - located at Waitiri Creek, Gibbston Valley - the tasting room was originally the Wangaloa Presbyterian Church. It was built in 1894 and relocated to Queenstown in 2000 where it became the cellar door for Waitiri Creek Vineyard. Serving locally produced wines and unique Cargo Craft Beer - finish your day by enjoying a unique beer and/or wine tasting experience
We then head back to Queenstown through the quaint town of Arrowtown with its Gold Mining past – you may have a chance to stop and stroll through the town centre (depending on the time) and then we take the scenic route through Arthurs Point – allowing you to see stunning vistas of the region’s dramatic and renowned landscape.
Once in Queenstown, we bid you farewell and drop you to The Winery in the heart of town which is the largest tasting of New Zealand's best wines in the world . . . . taste over 80 wines in one place. Choose the wines you wish to taste; with the simple push of a button you can serve yourself either a taste, half or full glass. Over 700 wines are stocked so you can buy your favourite wines and ship them to over 30 countries with their door-to-door delivery service. Relax and unwind in the comfort of the leather lounge chairs as you enjoy award-winning local cheeses with delicious platters of salami's, breads and olive oils and continue your wine tour long into the evening!!!
Notes: We can customise the Queenstown Private Luxury Wine Tour so that it is specifically designed for your tastes and needs – please feel free to contact us.