Wine Vineyard

These are the best vineyard experiences in the UK

Whether you are looking for fine wine labels, wine tours, tasting experiences or staycation ideas at UK vineyards, we have got you covered with a handpicked list of the best vineyards in the country. Most of the best vineyards in the UK are located in Kent, aptly named the ‘Garden of England’, but there are plenty of fine wineries spread across the rest of the country, from Surrey to Sussex.

Chapel Down, Tenterden, Kent

Chapel Down in the Kent countryside is one of the UK’s top three and perhaps the country’s best-known vineyards. They offer award-winning still and sparkling wines and produce their own range of gin, beer, vodka, and cider. Their wines were the first English label to be served at Ascot and are regularly supplied to 10 Downing Street.

The sprawling 25-acre estate located near the market town of Tenterden is open to the public free of charge throughout the year.  Guided experiences, seasonal tours, wine tastings, and masterclasses are offered on a paid basis. There is also an onsite restaurant. You can try the 1-hour 45-minute guided tour that includes a wine tasting for £25pp or the walking wine tour for £35pp.

Biddenden Vineyards, Biddenden, Kent

Another of Kent’s jewel in the crown are the Biddenden Vineyards. The 23-acres estate located on the outskirts of Wealden was established in 1969 and is an original vineyard of the county. Once an apple orchard, it is now known for award-winning wines, ciders and juices. It cultivates a dozen varieties of grapes, which produce about 80,000 bottles in a year of red, white, rosé, and sparkling.

A favourite among wine tourists for the range of facilities available, Biddenden offers both self and guided tours and tastings and hosts special events for visitors. You can purchase guidebooks from the gift shop or try a private guided tour for £40pp.

Denbies Estate, Dorking, Surrey

The Denbies Estate in the Surrey Hills outside Dorking is the UK’s largest vineyard with an area of 627 acres. Its many still and sparkling fine wines regularly compete on an international level and win multitudes of awards. One of the largest producers in the country, Denbies is also a buzzing tourist hub.

The estate houses a vineyard hotel with 17 luxury rooms, three restaurants, a gift shop, and a variety of tours and experiences. Choose from the indoor wine tasting winery tours, group tours, or outdoor vineyard train tours. You can even opt for a secret vineyard tasting trail tour of the areas of the estate not usually open to the public, for £29.50pp.

Hambledon Vineyard, Hampshire

Hambledon in Hampshire is UK’s oldest commercial vineyard. Established in 1952, it scored a perfect Vindex score last year for excellent visitor experience. The estate is one of the UK’s top sparkling wine producers and is served at the Houses of Parliament and in British Embassies around the world. The 200-acre South Downs estate is home to over 100,000 hand-pruned vines.

There is a range of paid experiences and facilities on offer for guests, such as tours, workshops, tasting sessions and special events. You can join a tour that offers a sneak peek of the UK’s only gravity-fed state-of-the-art winery and takes you through the stunning vineyards into the underground cellars cut into white chalk.

Adgestone Vineyard, Isle of Wight

A close second to Hambledon on the Vindex rankings is the Adgestone Vineyard, also located in Hampshire’s wine quarter. Despite being a small family-run estate spanning only 10 acres, it is one of the top tourist attractions on the Isle of Wight, with stunning sea views, on-site accommodation in shepherd huts and rustic cottages, and excellent facilities. Around 19,000 litres of wine are produced annually, which include red, white, rosé, and the UK’s only blue sparkling wine.

Try one of the tours for the whole grape to glass experience, with lunches, live music, and tasting of the Adgestone wines that owe their exclusivity to the chalky south-facing slopes and nearly frost-free climate of the region.

Camel Valley, Bodmin, Cornwall

The small family-run wine estate in the Cornish countryside used to be a cattle farm until 1989 when founders Bob and Annie Lindo planted 8000 vines of the sparkling wines that would place Camel Valley in the fine wine world’s hall of fame. The award-winning wines earned the vineyard a royal warrant in 2018, making it the first English wine producer to be granted the honour.  

Currently, the estate also produces white and rosé wines. Try one of the daily weekday tours with a wine flight of the estate’s four flagship wines, starting at as little as £5pp, or take a virtual tour and shop with free delivery and discounts on the Camel Valley website.

Ryedale Vineyard, Westow, York

Located close to Malton, Yorkshire’s food capital, Ryedale is UK’s northernmost commercial vineyard. Yet another family-run estate, the vineyards were planted as recently as 2006 and 2008. The sunny south-facing slopes at the foot of the idyllic Yorkshire Wolds produce some award-winning still and sparkling wines. Ryedale also produces ciders and juices out of its two apple orchards.

Guided tours and tastings sessions are conducted throughout the summer, accompanied by local cheeses and homemade nibbles, all for £15pp. For the best of the rest of UK vineyards, you can explore Tinwood Estate in Sussex, Langham Wine Estate in Dorset, Three Choirs Vineyard in Gloucestershire. and St Martin’s Vineyard in the Isles of Scilly.

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