Although you may traditionally think of Italy and France when you hear wine, South America has quickly become a rising star in the world of wine. In fact, many sun-drenched vineyards across Argentina, Chile and Uruguay have come to rival those of Tuscany and Bordeaux in recent years, according to wine experts. Sampling top-of-the-line locally produced wine on some of our shore excursions is the perfect way to immerse yourself in this region of the world. Here are four South American wine tasting experiences you shouldn’t miss during your cruise:
1. City Sights & Juanicó Winery | Montevideo, Uruguay
After a picturesque ride through downtown Montevideo, you will arrive in Juanicó, Uruguay’s ultimate wine-producing locale. This excursion will take you through the bounteous vineyards and state-of-the-art winery in Juanicó. Here you will be treated to traditional Uruguayan foods and, of course, a curated selection of wine produced at this winery, which may include cabernet sauvignon, pinot noir, merlot, semillón and sauvignon blanc. If you’re after a taste of the best of Uruguayan food and wine, then this is an ideal excursion for you.
2. Montevideo City Sights, Steam Train & Wine Tasting | Montevideo, Uruguay
After a day full of adventure around Montevideo, you will arrive at the Carrau Winery. The Carrau family has been crafting wine for 265 years, but began producing wine in Uruguay in 1930, paving the way for other local wineries and the recent development of quality Uruguayan wines. While there, you’ll enjoy several types of Uruguayan wine and sparkling wine accompanied by local cheeses and ham.
3. Panoramic Valparaiso, Vina Del Mar & Winery | Santiago de Chile, Chile
After experiencing the breathtaking views of Valparaiso and Viña del Mar, you will arrive in Casablanca Valley, an area where the soil is similar to that of Napa and Sonoma Valleys in California. One of the best regions for a wine excursion, the region is filled with wineries and this excursion varies the featured winery. Not only will you learn about the wine-making process, but you’ll taste several local esteemed wines and also enjoy a memorable Chilean-style lunch at the winery.
4. Live the Chilean Spirit: Wine And Horses of Casablanca | Santiago de Chile, Chile
While visiting Santiago de Chile, two authentic experiences that both locals and tourists love are visiting a local winery and enjoying a day at the Chilean rodeo. In Casablanca Valley, you will visit either Vasa del Bosque or Viña Mar Winery, where you will get an insider’s look at the wine-making process and sample some of the locally produced wines. After touring the winery, you’ll visit Puro Caballo, where you will be served a glass of wine or pisco sour while witnessing the skills and showmanship of a traditional Chilean rodeo. The experience is crowned with a savory Chilean lunch.
Whether you’re a wine connoisseur or just someone who enjoys sharing a bottle with friends, these wine tasting experiences invite you to discover the South American spirit and a delicious taste of this fascinating continent. Uncover some of these wine experiences and much more this December aboard Marina’s Rio de Janeiro to Santiago de Chile voyage!