10. Private-Tour of Chilean Wine Country: Colchagua
Visit one of the country’s most famous wine regions, the Colchagua Valley, set in the heart of the Central Valley, 100-miles (160 kilometers) from Santiago, is the epicenter of wine production in Chile. Production started here shortly after the Spanish conquest in the mid-16th-century with the introduction of vineyards by Jesuit missionaries. The mining boom of the late 19th-century brought wealth and noble grapes of French origin. The area is known for its award-winning Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Merlot, Syrah and, Carmenere.
After a three-hour drive to Santa Cruz, the region’s capital, first stop at Viña Santa Cruz. Here, see the place where the body connects with the soul. Begin your tour by conquering the body in the garden of varieties and learn how to differentiate their strains. Then get to know the soul by using the cable car to enjoy the most amazing views on your way to Cerro El Chaman. There, learn firsthand how the Aymara culture, Mapuche and Rapa Nui lived in harmony with nature and their environment through their rituals and beliefs. But especially, meet their guides Machi and Chaman, the inspiration behind their wines. Next, stop for lunch at a countryside restaurant.
In the afternoon, visit Viu Manent Vineyard, a model for wine tourism in Chile. Climb aboard a horse-drawn carriage for a remarkable experience visiting the historic Malbec Hall, gardens, and wine cellars. Explore the wine shop and handicraft emporium. The visit ends with a tasting of the vineyard’s best wines. Internationally renowned for the quality of its wines, Viu Manent is particularly famous for its Malbec.