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Melbourne wine tours: Five spots that offer a top drop
When it comes to Melbourne wine tours, the glorious Yarra Valley east of the CBD is the destination of choice for most visitors.
There are actually highly accessible wine regions in almost every direction from Melbourne. Here are five spots to visit that all offer a top drop.
The Yarra Valley is the jewel in the crown of Victoria’s wine scene. You could fill several days visiting the cellar doors of the many wineries around Yarra Glen and Healesville, along with those nestled in the surrounding hills. There are some 300 vineyards and more than 150 wineries. Famous names include Domaine Chandon, Di Bortoli and Yering Station, but there are plenty of boutique family-run establishments to enjoy as well.
These days the Yarra Valley is as much a gourmet food destination as it is a wine region. Some of the highlights include the Yarra Valley Dairy and the ever popular Yarra Valley Chocolaterie & Ice Creamery.
While the Valley can easily be done as a self-drive day trip, Melbourne wine tours are a convenient way to explore and someone else does the driving.
If you’re looking to add some sparkle to your life, head to the high-altitude wineries of the Macedon Ranges. They’re renowned for producing outstanding bubblies. The ancient landscape yields some of the country’s most celebrated sparkling varietals. Some of the highlights include Hanging Rock Winery, Paramoor Winery (housed in an old stable) and Cope Williams Winery with its gorgeous gardens and art gallery.
The Mornington Peninsula offers a unique contrast between coastal wineries and the rolling vineyards of the hinterland, and has around 50 properties under vine across its diverse landscape. If you’ve got a soft spot for Pinot Noir, the local version is a favourite with connoisseurs. The region also produces some renowned Chardonnays. Port Phillip Estate is a grand establishment, while Ten Minutes by Tractor and Foxeys Hangout are must-visits.
Image courtesy of Ten Minutes by Tractor
Geelong’s sprawling wine region is located about an hour’s drive southwest from Melbourne, and encompasses some 40 wineries. The region produces many of Victoria’s best Shiraz and Chardonnay varietals. Fun and funky Leura Park Estate and rustic Oakdene (with its award-winning drops and acclaimed eatery) are just a couple of the highlights.
Image courtesy of Oakdene
If you’ve got 45 minutes, you can be in Melbourne’s closest wine growing region — Sunbury, which is also one of Victoria’s oldest winemaking region. The wineries here benefit from a cold, dry climate, which is perfect for the production of the Shiraz. Galli Estate is committed to organic and sustainable vineyard practices. Its cellar door is open daily.
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Additional images: Bigstock