Wine tours

Pictures: 1 to 5)  Private cellar tours and wine tastings arranged by Four Seasons Travel.  

Wine tours

Using comfortable and spacious vehicles with an experienced English speaking driver/guide, our private sightseeing and wine tours are ideally suited to solo travellers, couples or small groups of friends or family who would like to explore the most popular sights and hidden gems of the region, whilst indulging their quest for discovering new wines.

We would like to think of ourselves as wine enthusiasts rather than wine experts, discovering and enjoying new wines in relaxed and informal settings.  Our featured wineries have been researched and selected for the quality of their wines, a good selection of indigenous and international grape varieties, and for the friendliness and hospitality of our hosts. Where possible our wine tasting and cellar tours are hosted by the owners of the vineyards so that you can meet the personalities behind the wines.

 

How to book your private wine tour with us:

You might already have decided which places you would like to visit, or perhaps you would prefer to rely on our recommendations? Either way, please contact us and we can provide you with a first draft of our proposals, including the details of an itinerary and prices. From your subsequent feedback, we will provide you with further versions of the running order until you are fully satisfied. When the final version of the tour itinerary and price is agreed, you will be required to secure your private tour reservation with a deposit payment. For some examples of tours that we have already created, please refer to the drop down menu above and take a look at our sample itineraries.

What is included in your private tour package and what is optional?

Included:

  • Hotel accommodation, room and breakfast – with a choice of traditional inns, boutique or luxury style properties.
  • Pre-arranged cellar tours and wine tastings.
  • Transportation by deluxe private car or minivan.
  • The same English speaking driver/guide/tour manager from start to finish.
  • Local orientation, typically a short guided walk of the vicinity.
  • Useful tips for how to make the most of your free time at leisure, including dining recommendations.
  • 24/7 assistance.
  • All tour design, planning, administration and travel expenses.
  • All local taxes, road and tunnel tolls, and parking fees.

Optional:

  • Entrance fees at visitor attractions such as national parks, caves, cable cars, castles, museums, galleries, castles, city walls and places of worship.
  • Specialist local city guides or park guides.
  • Lunches or dinners.

This enables you to freely pick and choose the extras you would like to include, and to make decisions at the last minute which could be effected by the weather or how you feel on the day? For larger size group travelling by bus, we can also maintain this level of flexibility. However, experience tells us that for such groups it is more realistic and beneficial to take a more fixed approach, and to include the entrance fees and some lunches or dinners.

Assistance with your luggage between the vehicle and the hotel lobby is provided, porterage at some hotels might be available on request.

Please contact us with your enquiry.

Further details regarding our general booking terms and conditions can be found on this website in Payments and terms.

 

 

Details of our wine regions, sub-regions and the typical grape varieties:

Discover with us some of the best wine regions in Slovenia, Croatia and Montenegro where you can enjoy the contrasting landscapes, cultures and flavours of each country.

Slovenia has three defined wine regions which are located in the south-west of the country (Primorje), the south-east (Posavje) and the north-east (Podravje).  These three regions are further divided into sub-regions and here is a summary of the sub-regions featured in our wine & sightseeing tours.

Goriška Brda (our so called ‘Tuscany of Slovenia’), the Vipava Valley and the Karst region are all located in the Primorje (Primorska) wine region of Slovenia and adjacent to the border with Italy. You will be able to sample a good range of red and white wines, from grape varieties you will be familiar with such as Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Pinot Grigot, Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay and Sauvignon. Furthermore, the region offers lesser known grape varieties for your discovery and enjoyment, including Zelen, Rebula, Pinela & Malvasia (whites) and Barbera, Teran & Refošk (reds).

The scenery of this region is absolutely stunning, characterised by rolling hills, cypress trees, medieval hill top villages and lush green vineyards – all sandwiched between the dramatic mountain peaks of the Julian Alps and the Italian Dolomites to the north, and the azure blue Adriatic sea to the south – providing contrasting backdrops to the fairytale landscape of this beautiful wine region.  The area is also renowned for its fantastic cuisine where you can enjoy a good variety of traditional Slovene dishes with hints of Italian influences.

The Istrian wine hills of the Slovenian Adriatic are also located in the Primorje wine region of Slovenia, where the Italian influences on the wine, food and culture are again characteristic of the area. This region is located directly on the Adriatic coastline, nestled between Trieste to the north and the Croatian border to the south, historically being part of the Venetian Republic and Italy itself.  The ‘terroir’ of the region, with its rocky landscape, chalky soil, infamous ‘burja’ wind and a dry climate lends itself perfectly to the most popular Refošk (Refosco) and Malvasia grape varieties. Other popular varieties in this region include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Pinot Grigot, Sauvignon and Chardonnay.

The Podravje wine region of Slovenia, is located in the region of Štajerska, in the north-east of the country nearby to the borders with Austria, Hungary and Croatia.  This region is best known for its outstanding white wines and sparkling wines including Riesling, Muscat Blanc, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Grigot, Chardonnay and Sauvignon and the lesser known Traminec, Šipon (Furmint) and Kerner varieties. However, the region also produces some more than respectable smooth reds including Pinot Noir, Blaufrankisch, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.

This region is also blessed with some beautiful contrasting scenery, from the highest points of the gentle rolling Jeruzalem wine hills down to the fertile Drava river valley below. Reminiscent of parts of Austria and Germany, there are several picture postcard medieval towns in the area, including Ptuj which is reputed be Slovenia’s oldest town. Magnificent ancient castles dating back to Hapsburg times or the Austro-Hungarian era also provide an interesting addition to the landscape. The food specialities of this region are most influenced by a combination of Slavic and Germanic traditions, offering an interesting contrast to the south western and coastal regions of Slovenia.

Croatia has several wine regions located inland and in its coastal regions, from the north-east of the country all the way down to the south-west. Our wine tours feature three of the best wine regions of Croatia; Istria, the Pelješac peninsula and the Konavlje Valley (near Dubrovnik).

Located just over the border from neighbouring Slovenia, Istria (Istra) is best known for its red Teran and white Malvazija varieties. Other popular Istrian grape varieties include Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Pinot Grigot, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. The landscape is green with gentle rolling hills and forested valleys. Ancient hilltop villages such as Motovun or Bale and delightful Venetian style coastal towns such as Rovinj offer attractive locations to overnight.

Arguably the most prestigious wine region of Croatia, the Pelješac peninsula in Dalmatia produces some of its finest wines. The best known local and indigenous grape varieties are the red Plavac Mali (also known as Dingač) and the white Pošip.  The wine making tradition in this region can be traced all the way back to Greek civilisation. The vineyards are situated in lush green valleys and perched on the hillsides directly above the Adriatic sea where stunning views across to the nearby islands of Korčula and Mljet can be enjoyed.

Further down the coastline and sandwiched between Dubrovnik and Croatia’s borders with Bosnia & Herzegovona and Montenegro is located the Konavlje Valley. Next to the internationally known varietis such as Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon numerous local and autochtonous types are also cultivated, such as Plavac Mali, Kadarun, Dalmatinka and Dubrovnik Malvasija.

A visit to Montenegro or Bosnia & Herzegovina also provides an opportunity to make some new wine discoveries. The most popular local wines in Montenegro include the red Vranac and the white Krstač varieties and some of the most popular producers tend to be located in the vicinity of the capital city Podgorica and the shores of Skadar Lake. In Bosnia & Herzegovina, the fertile valleys close by to Mostar and Trebinje in the south of the country are home to a number of producers where the red Blatina and the white Žilavka varieties can be sampled.

Italy is the best known wine producing country in our portfolio of wine tour options. Our coverage of north-east Italy focuses attention on three wine regions:

1) Friuli Venezia Giulia – sandwiched between Veneto and the border with Slovenia, this region of gentle rolling hills is best know for its fruity reds – Merlot and Cabernet Franc, and the dry and spicy Refossco – and its dry whites – Ribolla Gialla, Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay.

2) Veneto – a region of generally flat and fertile plains that surround the localities of Venice, Verona and the southern shores of Lake Garda is best known for the dry white varieties – Pinot Grigio, Soave and especially Prosecco – and for the light and fruity reds – Valpolicella and Merlot.

3) Trentino-Alto Adige – with a hilly and mountainous landscape located to the north of Lake Garda through to South Tyrol, the typically steep slopes of this region are well suited to the fresh and fruity dry whites – Pinot Grigio, Gewurztraminer, Chardonnay and Pinot Blanc – and the softer red varieties – Schiava and Pinot Noir – and the drier and fuller tannin variety La Grein.

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