Our Wine Tours
Currently tours are focused in the Macedon Ranges, Heathcote and Geelong/Bellarine Peninsula wine regions.
These regions feature a variety of premium wine producers and are suitable for day trips from Melbourne.
Tours are conducted on an 'on-demand' basis; we don't run a standard timetable of tours.
Tours generally take place on a Saturday or Sunday and the all-inclusive price provides the following;
- Central pick-up and return by air conditioned mini coach.
- Your tour host (and driver).
- Fully planned and booked itinerary to suit your requirements.
- Morning tea
- Visits to wineries as per itinerary - we recommend 4 wineries as the optimum number to visit in one day.
- Any tasting fees that may apply.
- Lunch: pre-arranged menu or picnic hamper.
- We aim to include a 'bonus' activity such as a presentation by a winemaker, a winery tour or other wine related activity depending on availability.
More . . .
Pricing depends on numbers and the agreed itinerary;
(for example per person price for twelve is less than the per person price for six.
Per person price is from $125 all inclusive.
The Wine regions -
The Macedon Ranges Region is on Melbourne’s door step, less than an hour from the city and elevated with the vineyard areas generally above 400 metres and up to 700 metres.
The vineyards are located along either side of the Great Dividing Ranges seeking the optimum interaction of soil, topography, aspect and climate. In general it is a high winter rainfall area. With cool summers (the ranges attract weather), the ripening period is in the cool of autumn-delayed, slow and long- the latest vintage to occur anywhere in Australia.
The wines reflect the climate and topography. There is a diversity, but the predominant characters are a natural lively acidity and steely backbone; fine, intense but delicate fruit characters and soft tannins in the red wines. The balance of alcohol, acidity and fruit provide complexity and longevity, and make the wines a superb match for a wide range of food
After the late nineteenth century viticulture was revived in the area in the late 1960’s with plantings at Virgin Hills by Tom Lazar and by Gordon Knight (Granite Hills) at Baynton in 1971. This was followed in 1977 by Gordon Cope-Williams plantings at Romsey, Bob Nixon’s planting of Gisborne Peak Winery in Gisborne South in 1978 and the establishment of Hanging Rock, Rochford, Portree and Roseberry Hill in 1983. Since then wine-making and grapegrowing has continued to expand, with Cleveland established in 1984, Cobaw Ridge and Mt Gisborne in 1985, Mt William and Bindi in 1987, Mt Macedon in 1989, and Curly Flat, Braewattie and Stonemont in 1993.
The history of Heathcote is one similar to so many small towns of its era - once a bustling gold mining and logging town, bringing people of many different cultures and nationalities, with hopes of making a gold fortune. To the north of the town, those immigrants disillusioned with mining struck a new type of gold, with the development of land for grazing, cropping and vines. Henning Rathjen was one of the early German settlers to arrive to the Colbinabbin area, at the northern end of the Mount Camel Range in today's Heathcote wine region in the 1850s.
He planted one of the earliest vineyards in the region, before the arrival of the vine louse, phylloxera, which resulted in the destruction of the vines. The land was then used for agricultural purposes. In the bush to the north-east of Heathcote, Italian immigrants planted more vines, some of which still exist today. More recently, Albino Zuber and Bruno Pangrazio were responsible for plantings, which today contribute to some of the iconic wines that the Heathcote wine region is renowned for - both at home, and internationally.
Today, there are around 40 wineries, and 70 vineyards in the Heathcote region, including descendants of those early settlers, once again growing grapes on the range overlooking Colbinabbin.
The Geelong Wine Region boasts historical roots back to the early 1800’s when Geelong was a booming regional centre, hub of the vast Western District trade. The planting of vines by Swiss Settlers saw Geelong and its surrounding areas emerge as the largest grape growing region in Victoria, and one of the largest in Australia.
Whether it is the distinctive maritime flavours of The Bellarine, the ancient richness of the Moorabool Valley or the rugged, exposed coastline of the Surf Coast, the Geelong Wine Region is united by boutique, family owned winegrowers producing premium quality hand crafted wines.
With each sub region and winery displaying their own unique characteristics, visitors are invited to explore the diversity of the stunning scenery, touring routes and restaurants whilst sampling some of Victoria’s finest cellar door experiences.
Geelong's family owned boutique operators maximise their wine’s potential by hand pruning, hand picking and hand crafting their wines allowing regional characters to develop.
Areas within the region have varying micro-climates influencing the depth of colour, bouquet and flavour of the wines. The Bellarine has a maritime climate with bay breezes and spectacular views, whilst the hills and valleys of the Moorabool Valley have a warm, continental style climate. The Surf Coast is famous for its long summer days and cooling ocean breezes.
James Halliday in his Wine Atlas of Australia and New Zealand wrote: “If there is a unifying feature in all of the Geelong wines, it is their strength and depth of colour, bouquet and flavour.”
Not only does the Geelong wine region produce some of Australia’s best wines, but the wineries are surrounded by some of Victoria’s best scenery and touring opportunities.