New Zealand is renowned for its unrivaled natural beauty, all conquering rugby team… and some of the world’s finest wines.
The wine regions of New Zealand are spread throughout the North and South islands, although most congregate on the east coast in the rain shadow of the mountains. The snow-capped peaks and clear water rivers provide a spectacular backdrop to the vineyards – with around 700 wineries scattered across the rolling, green hills.
While the country’s largest wine growing region, Marlborough, can be found in the South Island, most of the revered New Zealand wineries in the North Island are spread across several influential districts.
The warmer and more humid climate enjoyed by wineries in the North Island of New Zealand has seen the country’s trademark Sauvignon Blanc flourish, closely followed by Chardonnay and Bordeaux-style red wine blends – attracting an influx of wine enthusiasts to the underside of the world.
At Wine Paths, our local experts can organise exclusive tours of the best wineries in New Zealand’s North Island – including vineyard visits, elaborate tastings, luxury stays, fine-dining and exciting outdoor activities. All of our private tours of New Zealand North Island wineries can be tailor-made to meet your exact requirements, ensuring ever detail is taken care of so that you can relax and enjoy the matter at hand – tasting wonderful wines surrounded by incredible natural beauty.
The region is one of the oldest in the country and home to some of the largest wineries. Waikato and the Bay of Plenty are two of the smaller regions, featuring pockets of vineyards scattered across rolling farmland where the focus is on Chardonnay followed by Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc.
Hawke’s Bay is the leading wine and food tourism destination, and home to many of the New Zealand’s finest wineries. It is the second largest wine growing region, with an established route that also showcases the area’s art deco architecture and artisan producers. Chardonnay and red blend varieties are the dominant styles.
No wineries in New Zealand’s North Island receive as much sunshine as the region of Gisborne, which are also the first vineyards to see the sunrise. There are a mixture of large and boutique wineries bearing Chardonnay and Pinot Gris. The first vines in New Zealand were planted in the Northlands region in 1819, although wine making became almost extinct in this small area before a resurgence in interest from New Zealand North Island wineries. The region is now rapidly expanding, with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlots and Chardonnay as the most planted grapes.
New Zealand wineries in the North Island region of Auckland envelope the surrounding towns of Henderson, Kumeu and Huapai where Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay are the most popular varieties. The region is one of the oldest in the country and home to some of the largest wineries. Waikato and the Bay of Plenty are two of the smaller regions, featuring pockets of vineyards scattered across rolling farmland where the focus is on Chardonnay followed by Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc.
The Wellington wine region occupies the southern section of the North Island. The small sub-region of Wairarapa, which means ‘glistening waters’ in Maori, is where a small cluster of wineries of New Zealand’s North Island produce some exceptional Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc varieties.
Our tours of wineries in the North Island of New Zealand typically allow you to explore the vineyards, meet with the winemakers and sample some sensational wines that are often paired with local gourmet cuisine.
Contact Wine Paths for more inspiration before deciding a visit to wondrous New Zealand.