Just because you’re traveling with kids doesn’t automatically mean that you have to cross wine regions off your list of places to visit. Wineries are often some of the most beautiful landscapes on the planet, surrounded by excellent cultural and adventurous opportunities—not to mention great food and wine. Here, discover six of the best wine tasting vacation destinations for your entire brood.
Located near the fantastic British Columbia town of Kelowna, Mission Hill Winery is the Okanagan Valley’s largest and most prominent producer. A stay offers dramatic views of the vineyards that slope to Lake Okanagan, stunning architecture and special events throughout the year. New this summer, Mission Hill Family Estate is hosting Long Table Dinners set right in the vineyard. Nearby, there is endless hiking, water sports and historic downtown to explore.
This Spanish wine region is a favorite of Tatiana Livesey, mother of two and co-founder of Winerist, a website specializing in wine and food trips worldwide. The Priorat region, according to Livesey, is filled with “quaint villages, organic vegetables that you can pick from the garden and animal farms to explore.”
The Willamette Valley in Oregon is a mecca for Pinot Noir lovers. Stretching through the capital of Salem and down to the Calapooya Mountains just outside of Eugene, it has the state’s largest concentration of wineries and vineyards. While tasting at Stoller Family Estate, kids can enjoy time on the tire swing followed by a trip to the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum and nearby water park. Willamette Valley Vineyards even hosts a family-friendly Grape Stomp and Harvest Celebration each September, which includes a kids-only stomp and costume contest.
Viña Vik, a hotel and spa overlooking the Winery at Vik in Millahue, Chile, has created special program for children including “Smell Don’t Taste” wine non-tasting, field oenology (where they learn the viticulture and viniculture of wine making), cooking classes, paintball and capture the flag on the winery’s 11,000 acres.
Several of the region’s wine routes, including Constantia, Stellenbosch, Paarl, Franschhoek, Wellington and Walker Bay, are within an hour or less driving distance from Cape Town. The area offers activities such as hiking Table Mountain, learning about the history of Nelson Mandela on Robben Island and even mini safaris. The Cape also has the best land-based whale watching in the world, unspoiled beaches and abundant bird watching.