When thinking of wine destinations in Europe, a few like France, Spain and Italy likely come to mind. These best wine countries in Europe go beyond basics. Any vino lover needs to take a tour of these beautiful regions, where you can tour vineyards and sample all the best grapes and vintages there are.
Visit these wine destinations from western to eastern Europe.
Best wine countries in EuropeHow do these rankings work?
France is home to some of the best-known wine regions in the world such as the Rhône Valley, Bordeaux, the Loire Valley and Champagne. While you could spend a lifetime exploring the many vineyards and chateaus of France, we suggest a road trip to the regions that beckon to you the most.
Focus on the north or south, however, for a more thorough experience.
Italy is home to some of the oldest wine regions in the world. The country grows more than 400 grape varieties, which means there are seemingly endless wines to try. Head to renowned Tuscany for high-quality table wine at every meal.
Spain is actually the world’s third-largest wine producer, so there’s plenty to go around while traveling here. La Rioja is one of the most popular wine regions of Spain, and its namesake wine is truly delicious. Other popular regions include Castilla, Catalonia and Galicia.
Though it might not be the first wine destination to come to mind, Moldova is one of the world’s top 20 producers of wine. The world’s longest cellars are also found here, and the vast majority of the country’s land is covered in vineyards. With so many wineries to visit, it’s a wonderful weekend getaway to please any oenophile.
Croatia’s Pelješac peninsula is perhaps the country’s most famous wine region thanks to the robust reds that are produced there from the Dingac and Plavac Mali grapes. With fresh oysters and mussels harvested in nearby Ston, this coastal escape is a homerun.
Winding around the shore of Lake Léman from Geneva to Vevey and Montreaux, you’ll find rows and rows of vineyards terraced towards the sky above. This region of Switzerland produces crisp whites that are certainly worth sampling alongside sharp cheeses. Head to Spiez and Thun too, for more sharp whites.
Beer might be the first beverage you think of in the Czech Republic, but Czech wines are also delicious. Beer is primarily made in Bohemia, the western part of the country, while their amazing wines are made in Moravia in the east. Talk to locals to find the very best bottles.