Fertile valleys nestled between the mountains and the ocean are the perfect terroir for some of the best wines in the world.
Let us arrange a trip you won’t forget. Experience new flavours, aromas and colours with a tasting glass in hand, as you enjoy the sights and sounds of these famous vineyards, a deep-rooted element in Chile’s culture and identity.
Today your guide will take you on a tour of Santiago’s most important historical sites, including the downtown area surrounding the Plaza de Armas and La Moneda Presidential Palace. You will also pass by the Mercado Central, one of Chile’s largest fresh seafood markets and stroll by the many bustling stalls to see the tremendous variety available from Chile’s bountiful sea. You will visit some of the lesser-known barrios of Santiago including Republica and Concha y Toro, which were historically privileged neighborhoods and home to Santiago’s colonial high society. There will be time to walk around and take photos of the varied styles of architecture dating back to the 19th and early 20th century. Continuing through the cobblestone Lastarria neighbourhood, you will walk through the Parque Forestal and pass by the Bellas Artes Museum. For a panoramic vista of the city, you will visit the top of Cerro San Cristobal Hill. At the end of your tour you will enjoy a welcome dinner.
Your guide will meet you at your Santiago hotel this morning to depart to the famed Aconcagua Valley. In the shadow of Mt. Aconcagua, the valley is Chile’s smallest, but very well known as “a viticulturist paradise” for its natural balance of wind, heat, and soil diversity, Aconcagua has produced many fine wines, including Von Siebenthal’s Tatay de Cristobal 2007 which scored 97 points. Several 95- and 96-point wines are also the pride of Aconcagua.
Your first stop will be Errázuriz Winery. Founded in 1870 by Don Maximiano Errázuriz, Viña Errázuriz is one of the most iconic wineries in Chile and has played a crucial role in developing the country’s wine industry. One of the most game-changing moments occurred at The Berlin Tasting in 2004, where three of Errázuriz’ best wines beat some of the most prestigious French and Italian names in a blind taste test, solidifying Chilean wine’s place on the international stage. Famous labels include Viñedo Chadwick, Seña, and Don Maximiano Founder’s Reserve, the 2010 blend of which won best in show in the tenth annual Wines of Chile event.
Afterwards you’ll return to your Hotel in Santiago.
After breakfast, you will take a trip to the central coast. Approximately 90 minutes west, you will pass through the lush agricultural valley of Curacaví and the renowned Casablanca Wine Valley, renowned for innovative wineries that are producing Chile’s top white wines and cool-climate reds.
Your first stop is Valparaíso, one of the first Chilean cities founded by the Spanish. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2003 for its architectural and cultural significance, the city is also one of Chile’s most interesting. You will start in the downtown sector, learning about the history of “Valpo” and its importance in South American trade and commerce. Century-old hillside elevators will transport you up into the city’s steep hills, where a labyrinthine maze of streets reveals brightly colored buildings, bohemian cafes and elegant restaurants, and spectacular views of the harbor below. Your tour will lead you on foot through two of the most famous and eclectic neighborhoods, Cerro Concepción and Cerro Alegre. In addition you will visit one of Pablo Neruda’s three homes-turned-museums, La Sebastiana.
*Please note that Fundacion Pablo Neruda does not permit purchasing tickets in advance, or making reservations for visits. Visitors are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.
Your lunch in Valparaíso will be at one of the city’s top restaurants nestled in the hills. With a privileged vista of the bay and a varied menu paired with a fresh pisco sour or a glass of excellent wine, what could be better?
After your lunch your will continue your tour towards Matetic Winery. A state-of-the-art winemaking facility, Matetic is designed to complement its beautiful natural surroundings. The winery incorporates organic agricultural practices and design that optimizes vinification. Grapes are handpicked and carefully examined to ensure only those of highest quality are used in the winemaking process. In 2015, Wine & Spirits called its 2014 EQ Coastal Sauvignon Blanc, a wine in “surround sound, powered with pear scents, candied lemon and fresh herbs. In that same year, Wine Spectator rated three of their 2012 wines, a Chardonnay and two Syrahs at 90 points or above. A colonial, country home-turned-hotel with manicured lawns and a pool called La Casona make staying overnight here a pleasure.
After your adventure-filled day you will return to your Hotel in Santiago for the evening.
Your guide will meet you in the lobby of your hotel this morning, and you will set off two hours south on the Pan-American Highway, to get to Colchagua Wine Valley. This area has long been celebrated for its ripe and juicy red wines. Cabernet Sauvignon continues to hold the lead, although these days Syrah and Carménère routinely steal the show, along with relatively small quantities of excellent Chilean Malbec, a recent innovation, as this wine is traditionally considered the national wine in neighbouring Argentina.
Your first top will be Montes for a tour and tasting. Montes has been a big player in Chilean wine since shortly after opening in 1988. It is still locally owned, though widely distributed, and extreme care is taken in every detail, from incorporating feng shui components of water, metal and wood in their architecture, right through wine production. They pick only completely mature fruit, discard entire bunches if a few grapes are found to be faulty, and this year, used dry ice to bring down Pinot Noir maceration temperatures to reduce phenolic extraction. Their dry-farmed, sustainable 2012 Syrah won one of Wine Spectators top 100 wines of 2015.
Next, you’ll make your way to Viu Manent to enjoy a delicious lunch at this family-run vineyard. Founded in 1935, Viu Manent has been making wine for more than 80 years. Their core philosophy is centred in attention to detail, respect for the environment, and finding the balance between honoring history and tradition, and embracing innovation and modernity as they lead to excellence in their wines. Viu Manent wines have won several awards.
After your time spent at Viu Manent, you will be driven to Santa Cruz where you will visit the Colchagua museum. Once you’ve finished visiting the museum we’ll make our way back to your Hotel in Santiago.
Your guide will meet you at your Santiago hotel to take you towards the Maipo Wine Valley, starting with Perez Cruz winery. The first thing visitors notice about this family-owned winery is the swooping wooden architecture of the 3-million liter capacity bodega. The structure was designed by the local architect José Cruz Ovalle and uses an open structure to promote good air circulation in this breezy part of the valley, to keep ideal winemaking temperatures. Pérez Cruz has a large estate of 140 hectares of vines, with Cabernet Sauvignon, Carménère, Merlot, Syrah, Malbec and Petit Verdot, and they produce and barrel their award-winning wines onsite.
After this you will continue further into the Maipo Valley eventually ending up at Santa Rita winery. Founded in 1880, Santa Rita is one of the Maipo Valley’s oldest wineries and one of the most popular Chilean wineries in the international market. In 2014, Santa Rita’s Medalla Real was voted the 4th best Cabernet Sauvignon in the world by UK publication The Drink Business. An onsite historical museum features many Mapuche artefacts, and is another highlight of the winery visit, which can also include a stroll through the vineyards and property; filled with many old trees and a stately mansion which has views over a lagoon. Here you will enjoy a tour and tasting and a delicious lunch. Return to your hotel in Santiago.
Today you will return to Maipo Wine Valley and will enjoy two more wineries from this special Valley. Your first stop will be the intriguing small boutique winery, Aquitania. Located just outside the capital city of Santiago, Aquitania was born from a partnership among four well-respected French and French-Chilean agronomists. The idea was to combine the best of French vinicultural practices with the agricultural paradise of Chile to create unique, elegant wines. Their 18 hectares of high Maipo Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah benefit from poor, rocky soils that enable deep rooting.
Next you’ll visit the Haras de Pirque Winery. For lovers of architecture, horses and fine wine, Haras de Pirque is a perfect stop on a wine route in the Maipo Valley. The winery is owned by the Antinori family, which traces its involvement in wine back 26 generations, and manages 1,700 hectares all over the world. They make several wines spanning Cabernet Sauvignon, Carménère, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Syrah and Cabernet Franc. While the wines are 100% Chilean, like many wines from this valley, they are often called the “Bordeaux of South America,” and are considered to have elegant tannins. The winery is horseshoe-shaped, which is fitting, since they also raise thoroughbred horses and have a 1,500 meter racetrack. You’ll enjoy a tour and tasting of two wines as well as a bottle of Elegance.
For lunch, you will enjoy typical Chilean dishes at the Fundación Origen restaurant, nestled within the traditional wine region of Pirque. Afterwards you’ll return to your Hotel to freshen up. Shortly after your private transportation will pick you up and take you to one of Santiago’s restaurants to have a farewell dinner.
Return to your Hotel for your last evening in Santiago.
After spending the past days getting to know Chile’s wine country, your driver will pick you up from your Hotel in time to make your international flight.