Visiting a wine region or country isn’t all about just tasting what they have to offer. You will also be looking through the countryside and indulging in the local cuisine. However, harvest time is still one of the most popular times to visit these regions, but many wine areas host festivals and other celebratory events throughout the year.
In this guide, we’ll suggest which wine region to go for each month of the year, as well as what you can expect when you’re there.
January – Champagne (France)
Champagne, France, known for their delicious and popular bubble wine, is a go-to spot in January because that is when they have their beautiful brown vineyards and gray skies. The annual feast of St. Vincent of Saragossa, patron saint of winemakers, is also in this month as it lands on January 22. The people celebrate by dressing up in traditional costumes and joining in a parade. There is music, food, and loads of champagne.
February – Marlborough (New Zealand)
Although it may seem odd to go to New Zealand in the “winter” time, it is actually summer for them and they often have great weather for the Marlborough Food and Wine Festival. The celebration is the perfect chance to taste wines of the region, sample the local cuisine and take part in the live music and entertainment.
March – Mendoza (Argentina)
March in the Southern Hemisphere is harvest time, and the Argentinians celebrate it with the National Grape Harvest Festival in Mendoza, home of the Malbecs. Take part in ceremonies, parades, live performances and fireworks throughout the weekend.
April – Andalucia (Spain)
April time is Andalucia’s time for fiestas as well as their ripe wine season. This area is isn Southern Spain and they come alive during this time with their big Seville Fair (Fereia de Abril). So, plan a visit to Jerez in the heart of Sherry country. The bodegas, or wine cellars, are all in downtown, so you can sample wines from many different producers without needing a car.
May – Willamette Valley, Oregon (USA)
Memorial Day Weekend is special in the United States and all the wine regions tend to plan some major events to celebrate. However, the scenic Willamette Valley in Oregon is something special. There, you can enjoy special tastings, vineyard picnics, food pairings, chef-led lunches and dinners, concerts, art shows and more, with over 150 wineries and tasting rooms participating.
June – Rioja (Spain)
A special even that takes place in Rioja every year on June 29 is the Wine Battle (Batalla del Vino). This is a big party and concert that includes a whole day of spraying, pelting, dousing and deluging others with red wine. While there, definitely plan a visit to the gorgeously-designed Bodegas Ysios winery and the Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia tasting room.
July – Finger Lakes, New York (USA)
You’ve probably never heard of Finger Lakes in New York, but it makes some of the best white wines in the world and has stunning scenery. In July especially, the area has its annual Finger Lakes Wine Festival that features live music, wine-tastings, a parade, a four-course banquet and more.
August – Sicily (Italy)
Italy is going to be great no matter where you decide to go, but in August, we recommend the Night of the Shooting Stars (Calici di Stelle) celebration that happens on the 10th of every month in Sicily. This event comes with dinners, live entertainment, art and design shows and much more.
September – Sonoma, California (USA)
Now let’s move on to a wine region that many are probably familiar with and that is Sonoma, California. Labor Day here is celebrated through the annual Taste of Sonoma festival. Sample wines from more than 100 local wineries, enjoy food from the best chefs and restaurants, and learn about all things wine.
Certain credit cards, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card, offer great perks for this event, including discounted tickets, early entry or preferred seating.
October – Rosslyn, Virginia (USA)
Head to Rosslyn in October for the annual Virginia Wine Festival. The event features 200+ local wines, live music, Chesapeake oysters, as well as gourmet food vendors and food trucks.
November – Margaret River (Australia)
During the time that winemakers in the northern hemisphere are transferring their operations to the cellar, the vineyards in the south are coming to life. It is one of the best times to visit Margaret River in Western Australia. The 3 hour drive from Perth is worth it to experience the annual Gourmet Escape, featuring celebrity guests, a gourmet beach barbecue and over 40 other events throughout the gorgeous region.
December – Mosel Valley (Germany)
Mosel Valley in December is absolutely stunning during the festive season, so you will be able to enjoy Germany’s famous Christmas markets and dabble in the regions fine Rieslings and warm, spiced Gluhwein. If you want to visit a winery, make sure to make appointments with each cellar. Or, you can visit the town’s Vinothek to sample almost 200 wines from the region.
Credit Cards Mentioned
As mentioned above, there were certain credit cards that offer some extra perks if you plan on visiting events such as the Taste of Sonoma festival in California. Below we will go into great detail of each card.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card offers 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
• 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards
• 3X points on dining
• 3X points on select streaming services and online grocery purchases
• 2X points on all other travel purchases
• 1X point per $1 spent on all other purchases
Enjoy new benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit and when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards, you'll get 25% more value!
This card carries a $95 annual fee.
The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card offers a one-time bonus of 75,000 Miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.
You're able to earn:
• 2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day.
• 5 Miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
This card does come with a $95 annual fee. Enjoy no foreign transaction fees and receive up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre?®.
If you’re looking to travel in general or you’re a hardcore wine lover than our list of The Best Wine Region To Visit Each Month Of The Year won’t disappoint. We have locations across the world, what that region is best known for, and when the best time to visit it is. On top of that, we’ve even suggested some of the best credit cards to use if you’re traveling or simply want to take advantage of their perks.