BAY OF ISLANDS PRIVATE TOUR WITH THE WINE TASTING
After a morning exploring the Bay of Islands, enjoy a scenic drive through the Kerikeri vineyards, as your guide talks about the region’s long winemaking history and how it became the foundation of New Zealand’s wine industry. Along the way, stop at a local winery to stroll the vineyards, peek into the wine cellars, and sample an array of Chardonnays, Pinot Gris and Viogniers.
Winery visits can be customized to your preferences, and you could also choose to tuck into a delicious lunch (own expense) at one of the wineries.
After lunch, your tour ends with drop-off back at your Paihia hotel or cruise port.
Bay of Islands Wines
The first vines in New Zealand were planted in the Bay of Islands by the missionary, Reverend Samuel Marsden in 1819. In the late 1800’s, the Croatian gumdiggers arrived in Northland, bringing their European tradition of winemaking. This has been the foundation of the New Zealand wine industry, with many of today’s successful wine companies able to trace their lineage back to Northland.
Its northern location and closeness to the sea (nowhere is the sea more than 50 kilometres away) give the Northland region an almost subtropical climate – humid, sunny and warm. With the country’s highest average annual temperature, the total amount of heat available to the vines to ripen their grapes during the growing season is greater in Northland than in any of the country’s other wine regions. Soils are mainly clay-rich loam soils over a sub-soil of compact clay, with most of the region’s land lying below 150 metres.
In terms of wines styles, the regions tropical Chardonnays, popular Pinot Gris and vibrant Viogniers are leading the white wine growth, whilst red wines include spicy Syrahs, stylish Cabernet / Merlot blends, peppery Pinotages and complex Chambourcin.
Waitangi Treaty Grounds (Paihia) is New Zealand’s most important historic site. That is an absolute must-do when you are at Paihia. A high-energy, entertaining Cultural Performance. NZD 50.00 per person to pay at the site (on request)
Haruru Falls (Paihia) – just around the corner from Paihia showcases a breathtaking waterfall …
The Stone Store & Kemp House – Kerikeri Mission Station (Kerikeri) – the lovely site of two of the country’s oldest surviving buildings…
Makana Boutique Chocolate Factory – hand-made chocolates and other natural irresistible temptations. Tasting included
Rainbow Falls (Kerikeri) – stunning Rainbow Falls in Kerikeri’s outskirts
St James Anglican Church (Kerikeri) – the wooden historic church on the hill above the Stone Store…
Wharepuke Falls (Kerikeri) – a picturesque forest falls
3 wineries with wine tastings (included) and gourmet lunch ( payment on the site)