Are you a wine aficionado or simply a connoisseur of expanding your horizons? With the rise of wine’s popularity, Holland America Line continues to foster a love of wine among our guests with our BLEND experience where guests make their own blend of red wine, as well as through our partnership with our Wine Curator James Suckling, who is developing an extensive new wine list that will be featured on all of our ships.
In addition to the wine served on board, Holland America Line has curated several wine-centric shore excursions to enhance your cruise and your palate. To celebrate Wine Tourism Day this past Saturday, Nov. 10, below are five tours that will take you from a wine novice to a sommelier.
A visit to the idyllic Venissa wine resort on the island of Mazzorbo is sure to be a highlight of a visit to Venice during the “Venissa Experience” tour created in partnership with FOOD & WINE magazine. The Venissa resort is a gourmet paradise that boasts a pretty vineyard, botanic gardens and an ancient bell tower enclosed by medieval walls. View the vines and enjoy an aperitif as you take in the natural beauty of the estate; then, for lunch, taste the creative dishes at the Osteria Contemporanea. Don’t miss the chance to try the estate’s famous golden Dorona wine!
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Heading to South America? Excite your taste buds with some of the best wines Argentina has to offer on the “Perfect Pairing: Premium Argentine Wine & Tapas” shore excursion. This private tasting session includes five ultra-premium wines from all over Argentina, paired with five perfectly matched foods. The wine expert will offer an explanation of Argentine terroir, winemaking techniques and culture.
Oia, Santorini, Greece
The village of Oia on Santorini is among the most photographed sites in all of Greece. On the “Oia Village & Domaine Sigalas” tour you will combine the island’s beauty with its viticulture. This EXC FOOD & WINE Tour visits Domaine Sigalas, a family-owned winery and an off-the-beaten-track discovery in Oia. The wines are the product of a wonderful terroir that incorporates the area’s Mediterranean climate, mineral-rich volcanic soils and windswept vineyards. The tour of Domaine Sigalas includes tastings of many of the winery’s signature bottles, which are perfectly paired with local culinary delights.
A scenic drive through the rugged Adelaide Hills will bring you to the Barossa Valley — Australia’s foremost wine-producing region. During the “Wine Tasting in the Barossa Valley” shore excursion, you’ll discover the more than 150 years of viticultural involvement in the region that has led to the development of 50 wineries. Stop at four of the valley’s boutique wineries, teasing the palate with a selection of single-grape and blended wine styles. A gourmet lunch with a glass of local wine will be served at a renowned winery restaurant.
Santa Cruz de La Palma, Canary Islands, Spain
Did you know that volcanoes contribute to the making of some stunning and very distinctive wines? If you’re cruising to the Canary Islands, you will be in the perfect locale to try wine from volcanic soil. During the “A Taste of La Palma: Vineyard & Volcano” tour, you will visit Fuencaliente and follow a path that skirts the rim of the crater to take in wonderful views over the coast, the Teneguia Volcano, the Salt Mines and a lighthouse. Then explore a bodega (wine cellar) where you’ll try the delicious and distinctive wines from the island.
Interested in taking one of these wine-tastic shore excursions? Learn more about our immersive EXC Tours today while planning your next Holland America Line cruise.