Central Otago winery experiences & wine tours
Discover some of New Zealand's most spectacular landscapes, Central Otago offers jaw-dropping views and world-class Pinot Noir, so even when you are driving from one winery to the next, you won't feel like you've wasted a second. Queenstown is the gateway to Central Otago where you'll find over 140 wineries within a 40-minute drive, so there is plenty to visit and see.
At a latitude of 45° south, Central Otago is the southernmost wine growing region in the world. Surrounded by mountains, Central Otago surprisingly has a continental type climate since it's situated on a small island. Split into six separate subregions, including the Cromwell Basin, Bendigo, Bannockburn, Gibbston, Alexandra and Wanaka, each with their unique climate, offer very different styles of wine. The first three account for the majority of the wine production and being warmer tend to craft more robust wines, while the other three tend to create lighter, more perfumed expressions.
The first recognition of the region's wine came in the 1880s, but only really started in the1970 by pioneers such as Rippon, Chard Farm, Gibbston Valley, and Black Ridge. The reputation of Central Otago was built upon Pinot Noir due to their stunning array of styles, elegance, and high quality, but one must not overlook the other varieties and wine styles, including standout sparkling wines, Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, and Gewurztraminer.
Wine is not the only thing on the cards in this magical region, think adventure with bungy jumping, skiing, helicopter rides, jet boating, rafting, zip lining and more. For those who prefer to take it easy why not relax in one of the luxury accommodations, enjoy a round of golf at one of the stunning course, or indulge in one of the award-winning restaurants with what else, but a bottle of Otago Pinot!