NOW AVAILABLE - Australia's "Cool" Yarra Valley
Melbourne, Australia
Thursday, January 9, 2020 | 8:30 AM - 5:00 PM

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The Yarra Valley has an enviable reputation for being one of the world's greatest wine regions. From architectural statements to rustic tin sheds hidden among the fines, the Yarra Valley has a wonderful range of cellar doors that reflect all the diverse styles of wine made in this cool-climate region, only a stone's throw from Melbourne.

The first grapes planted in this part of Australia were in the Yarra Valley in the mid - 1800's. Over the years the vineyards matured and this appellation is now considered to be one of the premier winemaking regions in the world. The generally cool climate favors the classic Burgundian grapes - Chardonnay and Pinot Noir - as well as the production of excellent methode champenoise sparkling wines. Other grapes grown in smaller quantities include Sauvignon Blanc, Gewurztraminer, Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Your guide today is Australian sommelier Samantha. As a wine-competition judge and writer, Samantha will educate and entertain you during the hour and half journey from the pier in Melbourne to the Yarra Valley. Your first stop is at the cellar door of Oakridge Wines. Considered by many to have one of the region's best winemakers, Oakridge creates Chardonnays that excite both the public and critics alike. Here you will enjoy tasting a special selection of their best wines.

A twenty-,minute ride down the road is Seville Estate. Founded in 1972 by Dr. Peter McMahon and his wife Margaret, their winemaking legacy now lives on with their grandson, Dylan McMahon becoming head winemaker in 2004. IN August of this year, James Halliday, the multi-award winning Australian wine write and winemaker, named Seville Estate his "Winery of the Year" in his 2019 Halliday Wine Companion. As Halliday recalls, when it came time to review his recent tasting notes for this year's awards, "with its absolutely dazzling array of great wines made over the 2015, '16 and '17 vintages, I instantly knew that it had to be the Winery of the Year."

Following your tour and premium wine tasting, you will enjoy a wine paired luncheon at the cedar door's restaurant. The menu focuses on locally sourced meats and produce, and highlights the many herbs and vegetables grown onsite at the winery estate. After lunch, the coach will take you back to the ship.

Per Person Price: $365

Tour Includes: Luxury coach and driver, sommelier guide, water on the bus, wine tastings with a wine-paired lunch, and all local taxes.

Not Included: Gratuities for guide and driver and all items of a personal nature.

Activity Level: Medium - walking is primary activity of the tour.

Note: Times and providers are subject to change.

Travel Insurance: F&WT highly encourages protecting your travel investment in case of an emergency requiring you to cancel your trip. Your F&WT's Travel Advisor can assist you with procuring the appropriate coverage. Please make sure to read the cancellation policy on the registration form outlining our cancellation policy.

NOW AVAILABLE - Discover Dunedin
Dunedin, New Zealand
Tuesday, January 14, 2020 | 11:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Located in the picturesque Otago region on New Zealand's South Island, Dunedin's architectural and design influences were modelled after Edinburgh, Scotland. Dunedin is indeed touted as one of the best preserved Victorian and Edwardian cities in the Southern Hemisphere. Today you will have an opportunity to revel in the historic ambience imprinted on the region with a brief visit to a hilltop Victorian castle overlooking the Otago Harbor.

From the Dunedin pier, it is about a forty-five minute drive along the scenic Otago Peninsula to your first stop of the day, Larnach Castle. Built in the late 19th-Century, and considered to be the only true castle in New Zealand, you will have the opportunity to tour the remarkable Estate and surrounding grounds. The Castle Gardens are only one of five gardens in the country to have received the rating of "Garden of International Significance" by the New Zealand Gardens Trust.

Heading back into Dunedin, your next stop will be Emerson's Brewery. The craft brewery produces a range of traditional beer styles, from Pilsners to robust Stouts, as well as some more experimental seasonal brews. Start with a brewery tour, followed by a beer tasting with lunch in their taproom and restaurant.

Your final stop of the day is Urban Vino Winery. Newly opened in 2018, this is the South Island's first and only urban winery, where owner/winemaker Brendan Seal will show the group how he processes the finest Pinot Noir sourced from Central Otago into three distinct wine styles. He will guide the group through a tasting before you head back to the ship.

Per Person Price: $299

Tour Includes: Guide, transportation, water on the bus, castle entrance fee, lunch served with beer, wine tasting and all local taxes.

Not Included: Gratuities for guide and driver and all items of a personal nature.

Activity Level: Medium to High -Castle has many stairs. NOT WHEELCHAIR ACCESSIBLE.

Note: Times and providers are subject to change.

Travel Insurance: F&WT highly encourages protecting your travel investment in case of an emergency requiring you to cancel your trip. Your F&WT's Travel Advisor can assist you with procuring the appropriate coverage. Please make sure to read the cancellation policy on the registration form outlining our cancellation policy.

NOW AVAILABLE - Kiwi Lunch With Winemakers of Martinborough
Wellington, New Zealand
Thursday, January 16, 2020 | 8:15 AM - 4:00 PM

Sitting quietly at the food of New Zealand's North Island is the charming and historic village of Martinborough, which is also the center of a small wine-growing district of the same name. Most of the district's 58 cellar doors are walking distance from the village. The journey to Martinborough from Wellington is a little over an hour and a half but according to your guide, Yvonne Lorkin (who is a well-respected wine writer, broadcaster, wine judge, host, entrepreneur and co-created of a New Zealand wine focused television show) "the wines are well worth the drive."

The majority of Martinborough's planted vines are Pinot Noir, but additional varietals have added depth and complexity to the Martinborough story: distinctive Sauvignon Blanc, elegant full-flavored Chardonnay, appealing aromatic Riesling and Pinot Gris are all gaining recognition. It all started in the late 1970's when a few brave souls followed the advice of a soil scientist and converted farmland into vineyards, which proved to all that Martinborough is indeed well suited for viticulture.

After a scenic drive over the wild and beautiful Rimutaka Range, you will arrive at Palliser Estate. Considered pioneers in the region, Palliser harvested their first grapes nearly 30 years ago. Their operation and wines now rank among the largest and best producing estates within the Martinborough Terrace. You will be greeted by the lively winemaker Guy McMaster who will guide you through a selection of local wines by some of Martinborough's most colorful winemakers.

Following your tasting you will be treated to a delicious gourmet Kiwi BBQ lunch created by the onside cooking school's star chef, Jo Crabb. Afterwards, if time allows, you'll pay a visit to the historic village of Martinborough on the way back to the ship.

Per Person Price: $315

Tour Includes: Guide, transportation, water on the bus, wine tasting, lunch served with wine and all local taxes.

Not Included: Gratuities for guide and driver and all items of a personal nature.

Activity Level: Low - some walking on grass-covered ground.

Note: Times and providers are subject to change.

Travel Insurance: F&WT highly encourages protecting your travel investment in case of an emergency requiring you to cancel your trip. Your F&WT's Travel Advisor can assist you with procuring the appropriate coverage. Please make sure to read the cancellation policy on the registration form outlining our cancellation policy.

NOW AVAILABLE - The Giants of Hawke's Bay
Napier, New Zealand
Friday, January 17, 2020 |9:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Located on the east coast of of New Zealand's North Island is the towering Te Mata Peak. Known to locals as the 'Sleeping Giant,' it stands 400 meters above sea level and offers stunning views of the entire region below. Hawke's Bay is New Zealand's ultimate winemaking region, mostly because there is really nothing that won't grow here. With blazingly hot summers and crisp autumn afternoons, and a vast range of soil types or 'terroirs,' it has proven to be an unbeatable environment for the vines to thrive.

Today, you will visit two of Hawke's Bay winery 'gaints,' and acting as your guide once again will be Yvonne Lorkin, a well-respected wine write, broadcaster, wine judge, and both host and co-creator of a New Zealand wine focused television show.

An hour drive from Napier is the first stop today of the day, Craggy Range Winery. Considered by many to be one of Hawke's Bay's best, Craggy Range was the dream of two men who shared the same vision of making single vineyard designated wines. Here they planted vines to suite the terroir, building one of the most technically advanced wine facilities in all of New Zealand. Begin with a tour of the estate's appropriately named 'Giant Winery' - for the towering mountain peak in the distance - and tasting of their wines led by head winemaker Julian Grounds.

Your next destination is the famous Gimblet Gravels Wine Growing District where you will visit Te Awa Winery. This beautiful venue is home to three different labels, producing superb whites, wonderful rosés and rich reds. A group of winemakers from the Gimblett Gravels will take the group through the story of their soil and explain how this region put Hawke's Bay on the map. Following a tasting you will be treated to a lovely wine-paired lunch prepared by their highly acclaimed chef, Stephen Tindall, before returning to the ship.

Per Person Pricing: $315

Tour Includes: Guide, transportation, water on the bus, all entrance, tours and fees, wine tasting, lunch served with wine and all local taxes.

Not Included: Gratuities for guide and driver and all items of a personal nature.

Activity Level: Medium - walking is primary activity of the tour.

Note: Times and providers are subject to change.

Travel Insurance: F&WT highly encourages protecting your travel investment in case of an emergency requiring you to cancel your trip. Your F&WT's Travel Advisor can assist you with procuring the appropriate coverage. Please make sure to read the cancellation policy on the registration form outlining our cancellation policy.

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