Darby's Destinations Luxury Travel - Italy

How to pair a River Cruise with a Wine Tour

Passionate about wine and travel? European river cruises combine both

July 22, 2022

For those who love travel and wine, a river cruise is a unique way to fuse together sightseeing with discovering the region’s varieties. These vacations are immersive, culturally enlightening, and fun with the potential to share the experience with fellow wine enthusiasts and learn from passionate winemakers and wine experts. Read on for more information about how to pair a river cruise with a wine tour.

What is a River Wine Cruise?

Wine cruises take place on the waterways of Europe and navigate through the continent’s premier wine regions.

Much like a traditional wine tour experience by foot, bicycle, or car, your itinerary will include cellar tours, vineyard visits, and ample tastings.  

They typically last for a total of seven days, during which you will live aboard a comfortable vessel. These ships are appointed with staterooms, restaurants, communal spaces, and – in some cases – swimming facilities or spa amenities.

On either side of the cruise, you can consider adding additional days to start or conclude your wine vacation with a city break.  

Where do Wine Cruises take place?

Wine river cruises take place on major European rivers including the Rhône, the Garonne, the Dordogne, the Rhine, the Loire, and the Moselle.

As the prime grape-growing regions are located in close proximity to waterways, the concept of a wine river cruise is a no-brainer.

Throughout the tour, you will be on and off the boat in order to visit the wineries, restaurants, stores, and other wine destinations. While at the same time experiencing the sights, attractions, and landmarks.

What to expect from a River Wine Cruise?

A wine tour by river cruise is an immersive experience that urges you to connect with local cuisine and wine while enhancing your palate and adopting the mindset of slow, mindful travel.

Your tour will be led by a professional host who is qualified to impart their wisdom about the regional wine production, terroir, varieties, and pairings. As well as talks and guided tastings, this host will be available to answer your questions.

Gastronomy is integral to a river wine cruise. You will gain insight into which wines pair with what dish and endure the full breadth of savory, sweet, and aperitifs. This will come in handy for future events and dinner parties.

You will gain insider knowledge of local culinary delicacies and hidden hotspots for tastings. Besides enjoying fine food onboard the vessel, you will have the opportunity to dine at exceptional restaurants as well as beautiful vineyards.

Although you will recognize some of these vineyards and wineries, you will have equal prospects to visit smaller producers who aren’t household names.

How to find your ideal River Wine Cruise

Consider the type of wines that you gravitate towards.

Do you prefer rosè from Provence, crisp white wine from the Loire Valley, or velvety reds of Bordeaux? As part of the planning process, you can take my wine quiz to determine which wine region suits your palate and preference.

When you are ready, contact me to discuss and proceed with organizing your perfect Wine River Cruise.

Ready to embark on your own journey to the extraordinary?