South Africa, February 27 – March 9, 2015

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

  • 8 nights, 9 days
  • Many winery visits & gourmet meals, & relaxed sightseeing
  • Safari, if you want
  • Price 2800 euro

Wine Tour to South Africa: Stellenbosch, Franschhoek and more!

Meet the ambitious and talented winemakers with us

— In the last twenty years South African wine country has gone through a revolution. Today South Africa is a major producer of quality wines. The new generation winemakers have increased the quality dramatically. There is a lot of new thinking and experimentation. And the producers listen closely to what the wine consumers want.
South Africa is also a spectacular country to visit, not just for the wines: dramatic mountain ranges and rocky shores, wildlife with a stunning richness. Yes, exceptional safaris, but not only that. South Africa has its own gastronomy with many exciting and high quality restaurants to enjoy. In short: this is a wine tour with many outstanding wines, excellent food, nature and beautiful scenery.

Program    |    Travel facts    |    Book    |    More on the tour

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The wines of South Africa do not really need any introduction. We all know the great success that the wines have had internationally after the end of apartheid at the beginning of the 1990s. The country opened its doors and wine consumers all over the world had the opportunity to taste the full-bodied and fruity wines from the regions around Cape Town. And the quality is now excellent. There is a steady supply of good wines today. Many of the new wine producers are exceptionally ambitious. They make wines that can often hold their place in competition with other top quality wines from around the world.

A winery in Franschhoek in Cape Dutch style

A winery in Cape Dutch style, copyright BKWine Photography

As a wine country South Africa is considered as The New World, but it is “new” with a long history. The Dutchman Jan Van Riebeek planted the first vines in 1655 not far from Cape Town.

Then came the Huguenots from France at the end of the 17th century. The sweet wines from Constantia were world famous already in the 18th century.

The climate in South Africa is similar to around the Mediterranean. Our wine tour takes place at the beginning of March when we can expect very comfortable temperatures without the summer’s sometimes excessive heat.

It is the very beginning of autumn with a weather that is more like summer in central Europe. Harvest is in full swing and it is busy times in the wineries.

Enjoying a glass of sparkling wine on the beach

Enjoying a glass of sparkling wine on the beach, copyright BKWine Photography

We will visit the famous wine regions of Stellenbosch, Paarl and Franschhoek and also Hermanus and Walker Bay on the south coast. The environment and climate is quite different here, but just as stunningly beautiful. The wines are also quite different.

We will also have plenty of time to enjoy South Africa as a country. We will visit the Cape of Good Hope and the Table Mountain as well as some other “must do:s”.

We will enjoy many excellent meals featuring the local gastronomy. We will have time to stroll around the towns of Franschhoek and Stellenbosch as well as the bigger city of Cape Town. And there will be plenty of opportunities to enjoy the fabulous South Africa scenery.

To go on a safari in South Africa is also a special experience. On thos tour we will visit the nature reserve at Cape Point but a safari is not part of this program. If you want to combine this tour with a safari we can help you organise it.

When you come on this trip you will also be contributing concretely to the development of the South African society and to the education of South African children. See more details below.

More info

We have written a lot about the South Africa and about wine touring in the region, what to do and what to expect.

Here you can find more about travelling in South Africa.

You can also find more information on South African wines on BKWine Magazine.

Travel pictures

We have made two photo galleries with pictures from previous trips to South Africa to give you a better feeling for what you will experience on this exceptional trip:

The pictures were all taken by us on previous editions of this fabulous tour to the tip of the African continent. It is all genuine; nothing is stock photography from other sources or general tourism promotion images!

Travel reportage on video

We also have a few videos from early tours:

Elephant lunch time

Elephant lunch time, copyright BKWine Photography

Program — Wine Tour to South Africa

Preliminary program.

There may be changes to some details of the program, e.g. which wineries we visit. As always on our wine tours we put a great emphasis on that the visit will be exceptional and memorable. We do not always visit the most well-known or “famous” wineries (those that have half a dozen guides employed) but instead those that will give you a unique experience.

For more details, contact BKWine.

Program overview

  • Day 1 — Leave home
  • Day 2 — Arrival, welcome to Cape Town
  • Day 3 — The Cape Peninsula and the Cape of Good Hope
  • Day 4 — Constantia, introduction to South African wine
  • Day 5 — Hermanus and Walker Bay along the coast
  • Day 6 — Somerset West on the south coast
  • Day 7 — Franschhoek, blend-your-own-wine workshop
  • Day 8 — Stellenbosch, the capital of wine production
  • Day 9 — Stellenbosch
  • Day 10 — Departure from Cape Town
  • Day 11 — Arrival back home

Day 1, Friday, February 27
— Leave home

You leave your home location, probably with an overnight flight into Cape Town. (NB: See below under “flight” for important comments.)

Day 2, Saturday, February 28
— Arrival in Cape Town

Arrival at Cape Town airport in the morning. We pick you up at the airport. Around 11 AM, when everyone has landed, we head out to our waiting bus.

Cape Town and Table Mountain

Cape Town and Table Mountain, copyright BKWine Photography

Our first stop will be the impressive Rhodes Memorial which is on the north side of the Table Mountain. Here we will have a welcome meeting and a light buffet lunch where we will go through some of the details of the program. After lunch we hope that we have luck with the weather so that the cable car that takes you up to the mountain is open (it is closed if the wind is too strong). From the top of Table Mountain you have a breath-taking view over Cape Town, the Waterfront and all the surrounding landscape and sea.

After Table Mountain we check into our 4-star hotel, very centrally located near the city centre and shopping district, and also not far from the famous Waterfront district. We will stay here for two days. Settle in, relax and then later in the evening it is time for our welcome dinner in the city.

Enjoying a sunset dinner by the sea

Enjoying a sunset dinner by the sea in Cape Town, copyright BKWine Photography

Day 3, Sunday, March 1
— Day trip to the Cape Peninsula

After breakfast we head towards Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope, the south-westernmost part of Africa. Here it is almost always sunny and very windy.

Ostriches on the beach on the Cape

Ostriches on the beach on the Cape, copyright BKWine Photography

The entire tip of the peninsula is a nature reserve with an extraordinary flora and fauna. The famous South African feinbos, with more species that almost anywhere else in the world. There are ostriches, antelopes, springbok, baboon and much more. Do be careful with the baboons – they are very curious and grab every little thing or piece of food they can.

This is also where the Flying Dutchman supposedly sank!

We will visit the spectacular Chapman’s Peak Drive, a recently opened road along the coast that clings perilously to the side of the cliffs. It takes us along the Atlantic Ocean past Noordhoek.

We take the funicular at Cape Point up to the historic lighthouse with a 360 degree view over the area. Definitely, and literally, one of the high points of the trip. Not far from there we stop at the Cape of Good Hope. Perhaps the local ostrich colony (!) will join us.

We will have a late lunch near the small naval base town called Simon’s Town.

Late afternoon we are back in Cape Town. The evening is free to explore the city and to relax.

We can recommend a visit to the charming Waterfront, the old harbour that has been remodelled as a luxurious residential area and a centre for many restaurant as well as shops and museums, many also open in the evening.

A view over Cape Point and the sea

A view over Cape Point and the sea, copyright BKWine Photography

Day 4, Monday, March 2
— Constantia

Time to start on the wine! We begin our journey of discovery in the South African wine regions in Constantia, just south of Cape Town.

A few wines at a wine tasting

A few wines at a wine tasting, copyright BKWine Photography

Today we explore the Constantia Valley, the oldest wine region in South Africa. Today there are eight different wine estates and we will visit some of the classic properties such as Buitenverwachting, High Constantia and the very elegantly and modern winery and restaurant at Steenberg.

At High Constantia we will meet with David van Niekerk who is a very talented winemaker. He has revived High Constantia from its Cinderella sleep and is now solidly positioned as one of the very top wineries. He also makes an excellent Methode Cap Classic, or MCC, the South African version of Champagne (as it cannot be called, of course). He ages it for three years on the lees and the result gives the “real” champagnes fight for the top spot.

At Steenberg they are fortunate to have the cool winds coming in from the sea. It gives their excellent sauvignon blanc that extra freshness. They also make a very unusual nebbiolo! One of the few in South Africa. The winery also has a stylish restaurant, designed by Richard Perfect, and this is where we will enjoy lunch today.

Late afternoon we continue towards the south coast and Hermanus. This is a nice little town on the sea front of the Western Cape. The wine region is called Walker Bay. It stretches both north and east from here. We check in at our friendly hotel in Hermanus.

Here we will stay for two nights. After you have settled in we will meet for something very South African, a braai. A braai is the typical South African barbecue party. The word is of Afrikaans origin but today it is used by everyone in South Africa. There will be all sorts of goodies on the grill: meat of different kinds, sausages, chicken etc.

Ripe for picking, pinotage?

Ripe for picking, pinotage?, copyright BKWine Photography

Day 5, Tuesday, March 3
— Walker Bay, an exciting wine region on the south coast

On the menu today is to explore the Walker Bay wine region. In recent years the wines from here have attracted a lot of attention. The proximity to the ocean and the cool wines that this brings to the vines and the grapes makes for a longer period of maturation. This is good for the acidity and the freshness.

A vineyard in the mountains

A vineyard in the mountains, copyright BKWine Photography

Walker Bay is know for its high quality wines made from grapes such as pinot noir, chardonnay and sauvignon blanc.

Several of the famous estates lie in a valley called Hemel-en-Aarde. It is a spectacular landscape, between the sea and two impressive mountain ranges.

There are many interesting wine producers along the scenic Hermanus Wine Route. The fauna is exceptional and there are many species of birds here. Bouchard Finlayson and Hamilton Russel are two producers here, but regarded as pioneers for pinot noir in South Africa.

We will visit three producers here. One of the vinsits, and the lunch, will be at Creation Wines, a small winery in a fantastic location, almost like a corner of Paradise. Over lunch we will have a particular focus on finding the best wine and food pairings.

Early evening we are back at our hotel in Hermanus. The evening is free to explore this small town.

Harvest of red grapes at Nitida, Durbanville, South Africa

Harvest of red grapes at Nitida, Durbanville, South Africa, copyright BKWine Photography

Day 6, Wednesday, March 4
— Paarl and Franschhoek

After breakfast we board our bus, with our luggage. We will head for Franschhoek taking the route going through Somerset West.

Enjoying lunch, and wine, in a restaurant

Enjoying lunch, and wine, in a restaurant, copyright BKWine Photography

In Somerset West we will stop at Waterkloof Wines, a very interesting winery. Waterkloof belongs to the Boutinot family and is one of the few wine farms in South Africa that is biodynamic.

They recently finished building a new cellar and it won  The Great Wine Capital’s Best Architecture Award. The view from the tasting room is not something you see often. We will visit the vineyard and will get an introduction to the advantages of working biodynamically. This is an excellent occasion to get an understanding of this often misunderstood way of farming.

After a visit to the vineyard and the winery we will be treated to a gastronomic lunch in their own restaurant. The chef, Gregory Czarnecki is excellent and very ambitious, only working with the fresh produce. The restaurant has been voted as one of the 20 best in South Africa.

After the visit at Waterkloof we continue towards Franschhoek, “the French corner”, where the French Huguenots settled in the 17th century.The French influence can still be felt.

We will have one after-noon wine visit here today.

We check in at the family run and very welcoming La Fontaine Guesthouse**** in Franschhoek (www.lafontainefranschhoek.co.za). Country hotels in South Africa are often called guest-houses, for a reason. At La Fontaine it almost feels as if you are a personal guest of the family. The architecture is colonial and there is a quiet garden, where you can have breakfast, and a pool. We will stay here for two nights.

The evening is free for your own culinary discoveries. The town is beautifully situated in a valley between three mountain ranges. There are several very good restaurants to choose from. We will be happy to tell you which are our favourites.

Merlot in the vineyards

Merlot in the vineyards, copyright BKWine Photography

Day 7, Thursday, March 5
— Franschhoek, the famous valley

Today we will not travel very far but stay in Franschhoek. We will both do a “normal” winery visit and a unique winemaker’s workshop with one of the best winemakers in Franschhoek.

Welcome to Franschhoek

Welcome to Franschhoek, copyright BKWine Photography

We  will next go to Rickety Bridge and meet with their charming young winemaker Wynand Grobler. Here we will have a “blend your own wine” seminar. The final blending of the wine is of course very important for the wine maker, especially if he uses many different grape varieties. Now you will see how difficult – or easy! – it is.

For lunch we will visit the Môreson Wine Estate. Their chef, Neil Jewel, is famous in South Africa for his talent in making charcuteries so that will no doubt be on the menu, together with other seasonal specialities. It is a family owned property. Four siblings grew up here and three of them are involved in running the winery. It is a jovial place, as it should be when the address is Happy Valley Road!

We are back in town early afternoon and you can spend the rest of the day shopping, enjoying an espresso in a café, perhaps a chocolate from the famous Franschhoek chocolatier, or in the pool. The evening is free to enjoy the restaurant of your choice. If you want to dine at one of the most famous restaurants in Franschhoek we recommend to book well in advance. We can help you with that.

Taking a close look at the vines in the vineyard

Taking a close look at the vines in the vineyard, copyright BKWine Photography

Day 8, Friday, March 6
— Stellenbosch, the wine capital

Today we will begin exploring what is perhaps the most famous of the South African wine regions, Stellenbosch.

Sorting the grapes improves the quality

Sorting the grapes improves the quality, copyright BKWine Photography

Westart with a visit to Oldenburg Vineyards in Banghoek Valley. It is owned by Adrian Vanderspuy. He arrived at Oldenburg in 2003. Before that he worked in finance. Even before that time the property was planted with vines but it was all sold to the co-operative.

Adrian started to change Oldenburg, he focused on quality grape varieties and made his first vintage in 2007. He has cabernet sauvignon, syrah, malbec, petit verdot, chardonnay, chenin blanc and others. His low yields give wines with concentrated fruit and excellent balance.

At lunch we will have one more occasion to savour both the south African gastronomy and a beautiful view. It is the Jordan Wine Estate that offers us both. Plus many good wines of course!

In the afternoon we will make a stop at Reyneke Vineyards. Johan Reynecke Jr took over this family 40 hectare property in 1998 and started to refine the production and the wines. He went from “conventional” agriculture to organic and then became one of the first in South Africa to become biodynamic and to be certified by Demeter. Now is the occasion to ask all the questions that we forgot asking on Wednesday at Waterkloof. (Or the ones that came to mind after that visit.)

Late afternoon we check in at our hotel in Stellenbosch, d’Ouwe Werf Hotel****. It is on Church Street, in the historic centre of the town. It is said to be the oldest hotel in South Africa, and we have no reason to doubt that. It is a charming old hotel recently renovated. We will stay two nights here.

The evening is free to enjoy Stellenbosch. The hotel is at walking distance from all the restaurants, shops, cafés and bards. Stellenbosch has become the main town in the wine districts and there are many exiting restaurants as well as other attractions.

Tender South African meat from the grill

Tender South African meat from the grill, copyright BKWine Photography

Day 9, Saturday, March 7
— Stellenbosch, more of this charming wine town

Our host for a big part of this day is one of the great personalities in Stellenbosch, the highly acclaimed winemaker Teddy Hall.

A traditional house in the town of Stellenbosch

A traditional house in the town of Stellenbosch, copyright BKWine Photography

But before we meet Teddy we will make a morning visit to the Van Ryn’s Distillery, on the edge of town. South Africa has a long tradition as a brandy producer and Van Ryn’s has won many awards. We can certainly certify that their brandy is delicious. It is a bit in the style of cognac but different of course. And very, very good. If we are lucky their cooper is in his workshop. They have their own cooperage!

Teddy Hall, today winemaker, left a career in finance in 1994 to dedicate himself to his great passion: wine. Teddy Hall wants to make approachable wines with good fruit expression. Balance is his keyword. His chenin blanc wines are exceptional and considered among the very best in South Africa.

Teddy will show us some of his favourite spots in Stellenbosch. He will tell us some curious stories about some of the historic personalities that build Stellenbosch. He is not only a very talented winemaker but also a great history buff. And a great storyteller.

After our walk around town it is time for our last lunch together. We will enjoy it together with Teddy and with his lovely wines.

After our delicious (and no doubt long) lunch you have time for shopping, or just stroll around and visit some cafés or wine bars, a swim in the pool or just relaxing. Early evening we meet for a farewell aperitif. After that the evening in Stellenbosch is free.

Doing some serious wine tasting at a winery

Doing some serious wine tasting at a winery in Stellenbosch, copyright BKWine Photography

Day 10, Sunday, March 8
— End of the wine tour

Transfer to the airport in Cape Town to catch your return flight home. If you return home (not staying some extra days in South Africa) you will probably be catching one of the overnight flights that will get you home in the morning the following day.

Day 11, Monday, March 9 — Arrival home

You arrive back home.

The program may be subject to minor modifications.

Vineyards and mountains in Stellenbosch

Vineyards and mountains in Stellenbosch, copyright BKWine Photography

Fact sheet — Wine tour to South Africa

Dates: February 27 – March 9, 2015

Price per person: 2800 euro

Single room supplement: 480 euro

Included in the price:

  • 8 nights in four star hotels, double occupancy, including breakfast
    • 2 nights in Cape Town, 2 nights in Hermanus, 2 nights in Franschhoek, and 2 nights in Stellenbosch
  • Meals as described in the program (*) :
    • 8 gastronomic multi-course lunches with regional specialities at wineries or in restaurants, all including wines
    • 2 dinners, gastronomic multi-course meals, on of which is a braai, all including wines
  • Start and end point: Cape Town
  • Bus transport during the whole trip
  • All vineyard and winery visits, as per the program
  • Private, high quality tastings at wineries
  • Day trips, as described in the program
  • Local, English speaking guide
  • Wine guiding and wine tutoring by an expert BKWine guide: Britt Karlsson
  • Porterage at hotel check-in and check-out

(*) See below for more important information on our meals.

Not included:

  • Travel (flights) to the destination and back from your home location.

You organise your travel to Cape Town yourself. If you want assistance with organising your flight tickets etc, please contact us.

We warmly recommend that you plan a few extra days here if you have the time! It is a very interesting place and well worth some “non-wine” tourism too! We can assist you with booking additional hotel nights if you want.

For this trip to take place we must have a minimum of 12 participants registered at the “book before” date. Maximum number of travel guests: 22.

Guide

Wine guide: Britt Karlsson, BKWine

Britt is co-founder of BKWine Tours, named World’s Top Wine Tours by Travel+Leisure Magazines. She is the author of “The Creation of a Wine” that won the World’s Best Wine Book for Professionals award by the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards as well as Best Wine Book of the Year in Sweden in 2010. In 2012 she published “Wine and the Environment” that was named Best Wine Book for Professionals in Sweden and won second place as World’s Best Educational Wine Book in 2013. In 2011 she was also chosen as Wine Personality of the Year by Munskankarna and has been named one of the five most influential wine writers in Sweden.

This wine tour is organised in collaboration with a local travel operator in South Africa. To assure the best possible organisation and a unique experience it is important with very good local knowledge, not least in South Africa. In South Africa it is also a legal requirement to have a South African licensed guide on a tour. So on this tour we will have two guides, each expert in his field: South Africa and wine respectively.

South Africa guide: local, licensed South African guide, who can tell us all not only about tourist sites, but also about the society, the culture and the history of the country.

Flights

We have chosen to not include the flights in this tour. Here’s why.

We have customers coming from many different countries, and even different continents. By allowing you to book your own flights it gives you maximum flexibility in how and when to travel.

Today it is also in many cases cheaper to buy flight tickets as an individual than as a tour operator (especially a small and very specialised niche tour operator). We have chosen to put all our effort into creating an exceptional travel program and still keep the cost reasonable, instead of including a flight booking service and therefore have to cut corners on the on-location program. In this way, you as a travel guest, get much more value for your money we believe.

We will do all we can to make it easy for you to arrange your travel and can also put you in contact with a travel agent partner if you want more assistance with booking flights. Do contact us if you have any questions regarding flight arrangements.

Booking your flight to South Africa

We recommend that you book a flight that arrives in the morning of “Day 2″. Depending on your home location that is likely to be an overnight flight leaving on “Day 1″. In the morning of “Day 2″ we have a meeting point with all travellers at the airport. This is the start of the program. If you choose to arrive earlier, for example with a day flight, we can help to arrange additional hotel nights at our hotel.

Special booking conditions

For the South Africa wine tour special booking conditions apply, different from those in our general Terms & Conditions.

Cancellation of booking can be done according to the following:

  • More than 60 days before the beginning of the trip: the Traveller pays a fee equivalent to the Booking Fee
  • 31-60 days before the beginning of the trip: the Traveller pays a fee equivalent to 75% of the total price
  • 30 days or less before the beginning of the trip: the Traveller pays the full fee

Please note: BKWine does not sell “cancellation insurance” or “travel insurance”. We advice you to contact you regular insurer or a travel insurance specialist.

How you as a traveller on this tour contribute to the society in South Africa

A class of school children in Kirstenbosh Botanical Garden

A class of school children in Kirstenbosh Botanical Garden, copyright BKWine Photography

In 20 years there has been a tremendous development of the South African society. But much remains to be done. Each tourist that arrives in the country actually represents one more employment for a South African. But not only that!

When you join this trip you also contribute to the development of the South African society through development programs that BKWine’s South African partner is actively engaged in. These social programs are primarily focussed on children, schools and education, health care and to help people find employment.

For example:

  • Sponsoring of tuition fees for two children in the Fish Hoek Primary School
  • Contributing school equipment and volunteer work at the Talhado school
  • Volunteer work at the Red Cross Hospital in Cape Town
  • Sponsoring of rugby sweaters to the team at the Fish Hoek School and equipment to the sports club

You contribute concretely to all this by coming on this trip through our partner in South Africa who is engaged in all these projects, as well as others. All contributions are important, big and small.

You can also contribute more specifically when you come on this trip: Bring writing equipment (writing pads, pens etc), educational toys (jigsaw puzzles etc) and other things that can be used in schools and children’s hospitals. Perhaps you have something at home that children or grand-children no longer use?

Safari: a possible extension

Two blesbuck antelopes on the lookout

Two blesbuck antelopes on the lookout, copyright BKWine Photography

The

If you would like to extend your trip to South Africa a few days with a safari we can help you to organise that.

It can be for example a two day visit at a malaria-free private game reserve with luxurious accommodation, full board and 4 safari excursions in a jeep. Often you get to see all of the Big Five: elephant, lion, rhinoceros, buffalo and leopard.

There are some good private game reserve safaris along the south coast an hours flight time from Cape Town. They give you an excellent opportunity to experience much of the wild animals. There are also the better-know safaris in e.g. the Kruger Park. The Kruger Part is far north in South Africa, on the border to Mozambique, quite a long way from Cape Town.

Travel photos from the safari

Curious to know how it looks and what you will see? We have put together a page with photography from the safari. All pictures on that page come from a two day stay at the game reserve.

Our ranger who takes us into the bush

Our ranger who takes us into the bush, copyright BKWine Photography

Eye to eye with the leopard

Eye to eye with the leopard, copyright BKWine Photography

 

Book This Trip

Book before: 15 November 2014 No more bookings!

Booking is confirmed by paying the booking fee of 450 EUR. Full payment should be received at the latest one month before the departure date (see our terms and conditions). Details on how to pay will be sent to you when you register.

You book by contacting Britt Karlsson, BKWine:

Email us:

"I am interested in the South Africa tour in March!"
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 Just curious, want more info
 I want to book!
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Info: We will send you a copy of this mail. If you DO NOT receive this mail copy within a few minutes then something has gone wrong! Perhaps a spelling error in your email address? (Also check your spam folder.) Try again, or send us an email using the mail address in the booking info above. In most cases we respond to emails within 24 hours.

More on our wine tours

v.14.04

About the wine producers and wineries we visit

Ntsiki Biyela, winemaker at Stellekaya in Stellenbosch

Ntsiki Biyela, winemaker at Stellekaya in Stellenbosch, copyright BKWine Photography

Our aim is that you shall experience some of the best and most interesting that the wine region has to offer, both of wine and food.

We put a big effort into finding and creating outstanding winery visits. Often it will not be the most “famous” and internationally well-known wineries that will give you the best and most unique experiences…

It is usually when you get to meet the winemaker or winery owner himself (or often herself) that the visits become really exciting. And perhaps we even meet the whole family at the estate.

You start discussing and start to understand what it is they do and why in the winery and in the vineyard. Maybe we will also have lunch in the winery or at their home. Need we say we invariably have private wine tastings at the wineries?

That is why our trips are not “jam packed” with visits at wineries. Nevertheless we often run short of time since the discussions – and the wine tastings – can easily become very engaging…

Our wine country tours typically include a mix of small family producers, exclusive boutique wineries and larger internationally well-known wine estates, all selected with great care so that it will give you a unique experience of the people and of the behind-the-scenes in the winery and a good understanding of the wine district’s characteristics, tradition and culture.

At the time of publishing a travel program not all visits have been finalised. We are continuously working on improving the program. The domaines / wineries / châteaux that we visit on a tour may therefore sometimes differ from what was written in the original program. Contact us if you want more details, or if you have any special requests.

On meals: food and gastronomy

Preparing a wine tasting and lunch

Preparing a wine tasting and lunch

Wine and food are intimately linked. That is part of our wine travel philosophy; wine is an integral part of the gastronomy.

A wine tour with BKWine will therefore also be a gastronomic experience.

The meals that are included in a tour with BKWine are on a gourmet level and of very high standard.

Sometimes we will have a meal with a winemaker, perhaps in the wine cellar or at the winery, or even in their home. This is a unique experience that is generally not open to other visitors to wineries. It is an occasion to experience exciting combinations of food and wine while discussing with the people who made the wine.

Sometimes we will have a luxurious meal at a gourmet restaurant. At other times it may be not at a prestigious luxury address but at a local restaurant selected for its presentation of local gastronomic specialities, its atmosphere and its quality – a place where locals go. Or perhaps it will be a buffet lunch made at home by the winemaker and his wife. In all cases we want to show you local gastronomic specialities and the local food and wine pairings.

Do not expect a picnic with salad and sausage from the supermarket and wine in plastic mugs… Think instead of a wine-and-dine experience with specially composed menu with three or four courses and delicious wines.

A wine tour with BKWine is also a culinary experience both for the wine enthusiast and for the gourmet. A gourmet wine tour!

Why travel with BKWine?

Wine slowly aging in the barrel cellar

Wine slowly aging in the barrel cellar, copyright BKWine Photography

We are experts and specialists in wine and food tours and wine tourism, but also in wine in a broader perspective.

No other tour operator has a comparable knowledge and experience of wine, wine regions, wine tours and gourmet travel as BKWine.

We have organised hundreds of wine and food tours. This is what we love to do, because it is fun and exciting. What we want more than anything is to share with you all these wonderful experiences.

It does not matter if you are “a total novice” on wine and food or if you have a life-long experience in the wine sector. We will give you a very special experience, in a way that no other tour operator can do.

We write in specialised wine magazines and one of our books has won the prize as best wine book in the world. We are regularly called on to be part of judging panels in wine competitions.

We personally visit some 300 vineyards every year. We have organised several hundreds of wine and food tours with an experience going back more than twenty years. We are invited as speakers at wine tourism and culinary touring conferences.

We choose our tour destinations and winery visits with great care. Not because a winery happens to be carrying a “famous name” but because they will give our guests — you! — a unique and special experience. You may be looking for a short wine week-end holiday or a longer wine vacation; in all cases you can be confident that you will get a top quality tour, an experience of a lifetime. Or at least one that will last you until the next time you come on a wine tour with BKWine. Many of our travellers are returning clients.

A wine and food tour with BKWine is always guided by a knowledgeable and experienced BKWine guide and tour manager, someone who knows the ins and outs of wine, of the local gastronomy, of the culture and who speaks the language.

Some accolades we at BKWine and our wine and food tours have received:

  • “World’s Top Wine Tours” by Travel + Leisure Magazine, the world’s biggest travel magazine
  • “Best wine tasting holidays”, AOL Travel’s list of top wine tours
  • “Recommended Wine Tours” by Munskankarna, the world’s biggest wine tasting and wine appreciation association
  • “World’s Best Wine Book for Professionals” as well as “Best Wine Book of the Year” in Sweden 2010 for the book The Creation of a Wine
  • “Best wine book for Professionals” again in 2012 in Sweden, as well as silver, runner-up, as “World’s Best Educational Wine Book” for the book Wine and the Environment
  • “Wine Personality of the Year” by Munskankarna, the world’s biggest wine tasting and wine appreciation association
  • On the Wine Media Power List by Wine Business International Magazine (Britt, 2012)

Read more on why to choose BKWine for a wine and food tour.

Read more on what previous travellers have said about our tours.

Important information

Our groups are always small. The group size may vary, sometimes maximum 8, sometimes 20, but always of a modest size (we do not do “minimum 20, maximum 45″). Check the details in each program. This is important since it guarantees a quality experience and a personal welcome at the wineries we visit.

BKWine is a Swedish registered travel organiser. BKWine has a bonded travel guarantee deposit so that you can feel safe when booking with us. We fully comply with European and Swedish travel guarantee regulations. British travellers may be familiar with the ABTA (Association of British Travel Agents) protection scheme which is a similar model. BKWine follows the code of conduct and financial safeguards defined by the Swedish Consumer Agency and The Legal, Financial and Administrative Services Agency (“Kammarkollegiet”, with a history dating back to 1539). Read more about this in our Booking Terms and Conditions.

Read the BKWine Booking Terms and Conditions here. They are important to you!

You organise your travel independently to the destination for most of our tours but on location we take care of everything.

For more inspiration

Read our wine travel blog. And also:

  • Recommend this trip to a friend using the Share/Save (add-to-any) button below!

Newsletter on wine

Subscribe to our free wine and travel newsletter, the BKWine Brief. Each month it gives you news from the world of wine, restaurant recommendations, tips on our favourite wine producers and much more. And keeps you updated on upcoming wine and food tours.

Custom Tours

We also do custom wine and food tours if you want to choose different dates or if you want something different than what we currently offer on our scheduled tours – for individuals, companies, professionals, wine tastings clubs etc.

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  1. Wine tours in Chile-Argentina and South Africa with BKWine Tours | Vinogusto Blog - June 17, 2012

    […] a private game reserve. The detailed program for the wine tour to South Africa can be found here: http://www.bkwinetours.com/scheduled-tours/south-africa-wine-tour/. Tweet This entry was posted in Wine Travel and tagged bkwine tours, chile & argentina, […]

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