Adelaide wine regions: a helpful guide
11th May 2023
One of the best things about Adelaide is that it’s surrounded by wine regions. With a beautiful mediterranean climate – sunny days and cool sea breezes – as well as diverse soils and topography, a wide range of varietals to be grown. South Australia’s wines are certainly some of the best in the world. During a visit to Adelaide, you might want to sip on some wines and walk amongst the best vines in the country. In this article, we talk about six incredible Adelaide wine regions and help you decide which ones to fit into your wine-packed holiday schedule.
Adelaide and its wonderful wine
We all know it by now – Adelaide is a top notch wine destination. In fact, South Australia is home to some of the world’s most renowned wineries, and there are several reasons why.
- Firstly, the region’s climate is ideal for wine production, with warm, sunny days pervading through summer as well as cooling breezes which lift up from the ocean. Such weather patterns are ideal for growing grapes. The result is exceptional flavour and complexity.
- Secondly, South Australia’s diverse soils and topography also contribute to the quality of its wines, allowing for a wide range of varietals to be grown. We’re talking anything from Shiraz to Riesling, Grenache to Saperavi.
- Finally, South Australia has a long history of winemaking, dating back to the late 1800s, which has led to a culture of craftsmanship and excellence.
All of these factors combine to make South Australia a premier wine region, and therefore giving you a great reason to book a trip to the city and indulge for a whole weekend in the state’s best offerings.
Adelaide wine regions
South Australia has over 680 wineries. And with many located near Adelaide, you’ll have easy access during your visit. Some of the most amazing wineries in the region include Penfolds, Henschke, and d’Arenberg, all offering stunning wine-tasting experiences and beautiful vineyard views. Visitors can also enjoy the local cuisine and explore the rolling hills and valleys of the Adelaide wine regions they visit.
Excited? In this article, we share six incredible Adelaide wine regions and help you decide which one to explore during your Adelaide escape.
McLaren Vale is close to Adelaide – approximately 45 minutes to an hour of driving. As a result, it makes for a great day trip from the city. A world-renowned wine region located in South Australia, it is famous for its premium vineyards, breathtaking scenery, and its delicious Shiraz wines.
Visitors can explore over 70 cellar doors and wineries in McLaren Vale, each with its unique character and offerings, from boutique family-run wineries to larger established brands. With stunning views of the rocky coastline, rolling hills, and historic wineries and cellar doors, the McLaren Vale offers a unique opportunity to experience the beauty of Australia’s true wine country.
And you won’t find this region to be too touristy either. It’s the perfect combination! In addition to the wine, visitors can experience guided tours, culinary delights, and outdoor adventures that make the McLaren Vale wine region an unforgettable destination for wine lovers and tourists alike. Visit d’Arenberg for the ultimate McLaren Vale experience, or Hugh Hamilton for a classy tasting with amazing views.
Looking to learn more about McLaren Vale? Find out what a day trip here looks like.
Fancy a wine tasting afternoon only moments from the city? The Adelaide Hills wine region is a stunning destination located just a short drive from Adelaide’s city center in South Australia (literally it takes only 20 minutes to get there from the CBD). This beautiful region is renowned for its cool climate wines, with over 90 wineries and cellar doors to explore.
Visitors can enjoy the breathtaking scenery, picturesque vineyards, and world-class restaurants that make the Adelaide Hills a top tourist destination. In between wine tastings, visitors can also participate in a range of activities such as cycling tours, hot air balloon rides, and hiking along the stunning trails. A handful of quaint little towns here also offer unique experiences including German shops, breweries, restaurants and more. Whether you’re a wine lover or not, the Adelaide Hills wine region is a must-visit destination for anyone who enjoys spectacular views and unforgettable epicurean experiences.
Some beautiful wineries in the Adelaide Hills include Hahndorf Hill Winery, Bird in Hand Winery, Somerled Wines, Shaw & Smith, Mt. Lofty Vineyard, Leconfield & Richard Hamilton Wines, The Lane Vineyard and much more. Take your pick!
If there’s an Adelaide wine region to visit, it’s this one. The Barossa Valley is one of Australia’s oldest and most renowned wine regions, located just outside of Adelaide. It takes about one hour to get here from the city, making it an easy day trip.
This stunning region is known for its rolling hills, picturesque landscapes, and incredible vineyards that produce some of the world’s best wines. From whichever country or Australian state you’re visiting, you’ll recognise a heap of its labels from your supermarket shelves, bottle shops or wine stores.
Visitors can explore a wide range of wineries and cellar doors in the Barossa Valley, sampling everything from full-bodied Shiraz to crisp Rieslings. But the Barossa Valley is more than just wine; it’s also home to a vibrant cultural scene, with gourmet restaurants, local farmers markets, and artisanal shops. Visitors can take in the sights and sounds of this beautiful region on an endless array of tours, from hot air balloon rides to cycling tours through the vineyards. With its world-class wines and unforgettable experiences, the Barossa Valley is a must-visit destination for any wine lover or tourist.
The Langhorne Creek wine region is a lesser-known but highly-regarded wine region located in South Australia, just east of Adelaide. If you enjoy the smaller scale, less touristy wine tour, then you’ll absolutely love it here. Langhorne Creek is home to many boutique wineries and is known for producing premium red wines, particularly Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz.
The region’s unique microclimate just south of the hills, combined with the rich soil and proximity to the Murray River, creates ideal growing conditions for the particular varietals that it specialises in.
Besides wine, visitors to the Langhorne Creek wine region will discover a charming and picturesque landscape which offer a truly authentic South Australian feel. With fewer crowds than some of the more well-known wine regions, the Langhorne Creek wine region offers a chance for wine lovers to discover hidden gems of Australia’s wine country. During your visit, drop into wineries including Bleasdale Vineyards, Lake Breeze Wines, Bremerton Wines, The Winehouse and Langhorne Creek Winery.
South Australians flock to the Riverland region throughout the year for its ability to soothe. The region’s nature, majestic river and beautiful scenery make it a favourite holiday destination. But what most people don’t know is that the Riverland actually makes the most wine in South Australia (much much more than more famous regions such as the Barossa). The Riverland is well known for its large scale wine industry, particularly in areas such as Berri. However, over the years many more Riverland wineries have popped up offering the more boutique and small scale feel that wine tasters seek on a vineyard tour. One of the greatest things about wineries in the Riverland is that they are often not too far from the Murray River (sometimes right next to it), meaning that the views are always great.
A few of the best wineries to visit during your Riverland wine tour might include 919 Wines, Banrock Station and Mallee Estate. Only a two hour drive from Adelaide, you could visit for the day, or you could stop over and stay at a local hotel to break up the journey.
Further afield wine regions in South Australia
The beautiful Clare Valley Wine Region is located about two hours drive north of Adelaide – but it’s totally worth the drive. Nestled in a luscious green valley, this stunning region is famous for its premium Riesling wines but also offers a wide range of other varietals, including Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Grenache.
Visitors to the Clare Valley can explore over 40 cellar doors and wineries, each with its unique history, charm, and offerings, and one of the most popular ways to explore is via bike. Taking the 35 kilometre Riesling Trail, you can pass a great deal of fantastic wineries on a bike and pedestrian only trail which winds through the valley. The picturesque landscape and historic wineries, combined with the exceptional wines make this region a must-visit for wine lovers and tourists. In addition to wine-tasting, visitors can also experience guided tours, outdoor adventures, and culinary delights.
Some of the most famous wine regions within the Clare Valley itself include Watervale, Sevenhill, and Polish Hill River. Visitors to the Clare Valley can explore these regions and their respective wineries, many of which have a long history and reputation for producing exceptional wines.
The Coonawarra wine region is a little further afield still, but nevertheless makes for a great trip from the city (perhaps with a night spent in a local hotel). The region is known for producing some of the world’s best Cabernet Sauvignon wines and is characterised by its unique terra rossa soil, which is rich in red, iron-rich clay and limestone.
Visitors to Coonawarra can explore the many cellar doors and vineyards, tasting some of the world’s most acclaimed Cabernet Sauvignon wines. But in addition to wine-tasting, you can also enjoy local cuisine, art galleries, and scenic drives through the rolling hills and vineyards.
Since it’s a little less known, but also offer a stunning quality, the Coonawarra wine region is a must-visit destination for wine lovers and tourists alike, offering a unique and unforgettable experience in the heart of Australia’s wine country.
Stay in prime position amongst the best Adelaide wine regions
Receive 10% off accommodation in Adelaide when you use the code SAWE10 upon booking.
Adelaide Meridien Hotel is located in quaint North Adelaide, only a short walk from all the best sites in the city. With its prime position in Adelaide, the property offers its guests great proximity to all the best wine regions in the state. From here, you’ll be able to drive:
- one hour north to the Barossa Valley
- one hour south to McLaren Vale
- … and similar distances to all other wine regions in the state.
Adelaide Meridien provides guests with comfortable accommodation, free car parking, an onsite restaurant, a swimming pool and prime position near cafes and restaurants in North Adelaide.
Looking for more options? Use your 10% discount on other Adelaide accommodation. Find out more here.