Over the last few decades, vineyards and wineries have come up as a major tourist attraction in the South American nation of Chile. If Chilean tourism industry folks are to be believed, a visit to Chile is incomplete without a wine tour across the beautiful landscapes marked by some of the most popular Chilean vineyards.
Chile has some of the world's best quality wines to its credit. Other than the chance of tasting different types of wine, you will also get a chance to see original mansions with vast gardens and wine cellars from the 1800's on your visit to Chile, which is bound to give you the feel of 19th century in the 21st century.
Chile: A Heaven for Vineyards
In Chile, the 600-mile stretch of land lying between gigantic Andes and the Pacific coast is a heaven for vineyards. The fertile soil of this region, abundant water supply from glaciers in Andes, and mild weather prevailing for the entire year―all combine to form ideal conditions required for growth of grape vines. The stretch of land is divided into various regions; most prominent among which are Casablanca, Aconcagua, Curicó and Maule, Rapel, Bío Bío, etc.
More than 20 different varieties of grapes are grown in these vineyards; most popular ones among which are the Cabernet Sauvignon (most widely recognized red wine grape variety in the world), Carmenère, Merlot, etc. Most of these are a mixture of Spanish and French varieties. Continuous experiments of cross breeding two different varieties are in progress even today, which only means that the figure will continue to increase in the future.
Best Vineyards, Wineries, and Wines
Some of the most famous names in the list of best vineyards of Chile include Viña Concha y Toro and Viña Portal del Alto in Santiago, Viña Miguel Torres in Chile's central valley, Viña Hacienda Araucano and Viña La Playa in the Colchagua Valley, Viña Santa Rita on the outskirts of the city of Buin, etc. Viña Orgánicos Emiliana, which boasts of being the first Chilean vineyard to produce wines from organically grown grape varieties, deserves a special mention. Some of the best wineries of Chile include Casas del Bosque and Kingston Family Vineyards in Casablanca Valley, Vina Calina and Balduzzi Vineyards & Winery in Maule Valley, etc.
And as for the best Chilean wines, some of the most obvious names in this list include Agustinos Gran Reserva 2007 Pinot Noir, Concha y Toro Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon, Concha y Toro Terrunyo 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon, Anakena ONA Syrah, Casa Lapostolle Clos Apalta 2005, Montes 2005 Purple Angel, etc.
Vineyards and Wineries Tours
If you intend to get a first-hand experience of the vineyards and wineries in this region, you need to be on the lookout for Chilean wine tours. These tours have become an important attribute of the local travel and tourism industry today. Even though the development of wineries in Chile can be traced back to the 16th century, wine tasting made its debut in these wineries only around a decade back. Over the period, it has come a long way to become one of the most popular activities in this part of the world.
People from all corners of the world throng to these wineries to taste what is called the finest wine in the world. As opposed to the situation which prevailed over a decade ago, these vineyards and wineries are easily accessible today and therefore, experiencing the divine feeling of tasting wine right in wineries has become much easier.
Such is the beauty of these vineyards that you can't windup your tour of Chile without visiting them. On your tour, you will also get to see several vineyards-for-sale signs in this region, which―we believe―will be of more interest for you if you are more of an entrepreneur than traveler.