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Mexico is known for its tequila, but in Valle de Guadalupe (Guadalupe Valley) you’re presented with some more spectacular experiences. Valle de Guadalupe is the historical wine region in Mexico, where the clear blue skies blend with the mountains, which form a fortress around a valley full of vineyards, where the vines are romanced with the light sea breeze.
Wines from this region can compete with the best in the World. A tour of Valle de Guadalupe presents you with an opportunity of discovering many tasty Mexican varieties. It also gives you the chance of trying out world-class restaurants and staying at small and cozy hotels fitted with modern amenities and gadgets.
Here are 5 things you shouldn’t miss out on when visiting Valle de Guadalupe…
1. Try Out the Cuisine
Visiting Valle de Guadalupe without complementing the excellent wines with appetizing Baja food will make your trip much less satisfying. Luckily, you will find different varieties of high cuisine in Valle de Guadalupe there is high any time of day; from the traditional breakfast in San Pedro de las Minas to special dinners that the best wine houses prepare in their properties. If you love seafood, then you’ll get a lot of super fresh fish and seafood straight from the Pacific Ocean is super-fresh fish and seafood.
2. Imbibe in the Wines
It would be a sin not to taste some of the many splendid wines produced in Baja which can compete with some of the best wines in the World. Valle de Guadalupe wineries produce some of the finest wines in Baja and you should certainly check them out. Would be expert sommeliers can try out their wine tasting skills here coupled with the breathtaking views offered by the green vineyard fields.
3. Visit the Vine and Wine Museum
Your tour will be incomplete without a visit to the Vine and Wine Museum, where, in addition to having a prevailing view of the Guadalupe Valley, you will be able to learn about the history of winemaking in the state of Baja California, from the coming of the missionaries to the kinds of crops and the variety of grapes found in Baja.
4. Try Out the Cheese
n a visit to Valle Guadalupe, you should certainly head down to La Cava de Marcelo, in Ojos Negros, for cheese that will perfectly complement your wine choices. At the 100-year-old artisanal cheese cellar, one of the few in all of Latin America open to the public, spending an afternoon on your tour sampling their many regional cheese variants, from queso fresco flavored with basil to two-year-old añejos will certainly not be an afternoon wasted.
5. Stay at the Hotels
Stay at one of the valley’s bed and breakfasts or boutique hotels for a full Valle de Guadalupe experience. You will find a great number of small, comfortable and warm hotels with that special Mexican ambience. If you desire more luxury, you will find a host of modern hotels with world class amenities and gadgets.
You need a first-hand experience…
Nothing beats a firsthand experience of Valle de Guadalupe attractions. If you’d to love to get a first-hand feel of what it feels like to enjoy the many attractions of Valle de Guadalupe, then waste no more time and book a tour with Baja Winery Tours.
Just a few hours south of downtown San Diego and across the Mexican border lies Baja California Sur’s Valle de Guadalupe, a place of verdant valleys and sweeping vistas that has grown to become one of the region’s most exciting food and wine destinations. The valley has long been building its gastronomic reputation, but only in recent few years have things really taken off, with new and exciting talents putting up shop, and travelers on southbound excursions reaping the rewards, among them, exclusive limited-release Mexican wines, the best olive oils the New World has to offer, terrific cheeses, and a world-class culinary scene.
Besides having an exciting food and wine industry, Baja also offers an incredible array of destinations of attractions that make the trip to Mexico all worth it. If you’re looking to visit and want to do something besides booking your own Baja winery tours, here are some ideas.
If you’re an art buff, you can’t go wrong by visiting Todos Santos, a self-described bohemian town located some 37 miles north of Los Cabos. The local art enclave is home to a thriving community of local and expat artists, who have put up several galleries and studios to showcase and sell sculptures, oil paintings, handicrafts, and jewelry. Spend an afternoon wandering the town’s bougainvillea adorned streets, and you never know what you’re going to see—unique bookstores, bustling cafés and bistros, and gorgeous colonial-style buildings.
Baja’s crystal-clear seas and long stretches of powdery, white sand beaches should give anyone a strong case to visit the region. Bahia Santa Maria’s turquoise waters, with a backdrop of towering cliffs and wide beaches, is a popular snorkeling spot, boasting of pristine coral reefs beneath the surface of the water.
And for thrill-seekers, Baja is also a mecca for watersport enthusiasts. Go diving around Cabo Pulmo, home to a 20,000-year-old coral reef. If surfing’s more your thing, head over to Playa Costa Azul. On the other hand, go for a relaxed day of swimming and sunbathing at Las Palmas (Playa San Pedro, the perfect lounge spot for vacationers.
Still on the subject of water, Baja’s waters along the Sea of Cortez is rich in game fishing, earning the moniker of being the “'Marlin Capital of the World.” Book a charted fishing trip and choose from a local panga, or a decked out cruiser complete with a guide.
With its dry and sunny weather all year round, it comes as no surprise why Los Cabos has earned a reputation for being one of the world’s best golf destinations, offering a wide variety of unique championship courses, designed by names such as Robert Trent Jones Jr. and Jack Nicklaus. Whether you're looking to have a calm day of golf, or looking for a real challenge with friends, Baja California Sur’s golf courses are sure to keep you entertained.
Although Mexico has a long and storied tradition of producing and enjoying alcoholic beverages —in particular, beer, mescal, and of course, tequila— the country’s wine industry is a relative newcomer to the international wine scene, which may come as a surprise to some due to the country’s Spanish heritage. Even more surprising is that Mexico is actually the first wine-producing country in the Americas, a claim to fame that dates back to when the conquistadors and friars brought vine clippings to the New World hundreds of years ago.
Signs of Improvement and Change
Still, attitudes are changing, with Mexico’s wine production showing clear signs of growth, particularly in Baja, where Valle de Guadalupe wineries have helped transform the region into an up-and-coming wine destination often dubbed as “the next Napa Valley”—a comparison that may not be completely accurate, but one with merit nonetheless.
Mexico’s recent wine consumption has showed near-prodigious growth. In the last 10 years, wine consumption has increased by at least 40 percent, with no signs of slowing down. By 2020, it’s predicted that consumption will triple to 180 million liters per year—or two liters for every Mexican citizen, about the same per capita consumption of Brazil. Still, this level of consumption is but a drop in the bucket next to international standards—for example, the annual per capita consumption of French adults is an average of 50 liters a year.
While the Mexican government has yet to make any real concerted effort to promote Mexican wines to the rest of the world, institutions such as research centers and universities have taken up the task of raising awareness of the quality and unique characteristics of the Mexcio’s wines.
Universidad Autónoma de Baja California
Researchers from the Universidad Autónoma de Baja California (UABC) have conducted a number studies on Mexico’s wines, with one paper delving into the production needs of Baja’s wine industry. Since 1993, the UABC has also held an annual international wine tasting competition, with the support of the International Organization of Vine and Wine, the intergovernmental organization based in Paris, France. The contest aims to promote the production of superior Mexican wines and encourage the reasonable consumption of wine within Mexican society, thereby encouraging the growth of the country’s wine culture. The university also offers undergraduate minor in studies focused on the local food and wine industry.
Colegio de la Frontera Norte
Another educational institution, the Colegio de la Frontera Norte (COLEF)—a prestigious research center and think tank in Baja—has conducted several research activities focused on Mexico’s wine industry. The institution is funded and administered by Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACYT), the government agency that oversees Mexico’s developments in science and technology.
If you’d like to learn more about Baja’s rich wine tradition, book your very own Valle de guadalupe winery tours at Baja Winery Tours today.
Looking for the best wine varietals in Valle de Guadalupe? We listed our favorite wine flavors while recounting the history of Mexico's wine country in Baja.
As summer fades and temperatures cool down in Baja, a Valle de Guadalupe winery tour offers a calm and refreshing respite from the hustle and bustle of the urban grind. For many of our guests, the weeks between the middle of October and early December are the best time to be in Baja wine country, when the fall gives the region a much-needed break from the heat and humidity of summer.
Cool Weather and Fewer Tourists
Another reason to visit during the fall is a noticeable difference in the number of tourists. Although the Los Cabos travel industry sees a steady, year-round stream of tourists from all over the world, August and December are typically the low season of the year, which makes it a fabulous time to come and visit if you want quiet seclusion.
What You’ll See
A Valle de Guadalupe winery tour also brings you up close and personal with luscious bunches of grapes hanging heavy from the vines. If you come early, you can see the vineyards before the harvest while you enjoy a glass a glass of wine. The colors can be a lovely sight, with the leaves turning to gold and red—an awe-inspiring spectacle indeed. And because of the cool autumn weather, walking around the vineyards won’t feel like a chore at all.
What You’ll Eat and Drink
Fishing is at its peak in Baja during this time of the year, which means an influx of fresh-off-the-boat seafood for you to enjoy at any of the great restaurants in Valle de Guadalupe. You can also take your pick from year-round table offerings, such as charcuterie, tapas, pizzas, and salads—a fresh winery tour salad is an experience we also recommend to our customers’ delight.
No Valle de Guadalupe winery tour would be complete without sampling the local wines. The Valle de Guadalupe region contains more than 60 wineries—all packed in a 35-square-mile area—so different winery tours may let you see different places (and sample different wines!) each time. Try any of the local whites and match it with a light meal.
Why Valle de Guadalupe?
Just an hour’s drive from the San Diego border and a few minutes away from Ensanada, Valle de Guadalupe has grown to become one of North America’s most intriguing food and wine destinations. The area is also one of the oldest wine cultivating regions in America, beginning with the Spanish, who brought over vine clippings from Europe some five hundred years ago.
Today, the combination of local ingredients and impressive new talent rewards visitors with an incredible array of limited-release wines, some of the best aged cheeses and olive oils in the entire continent, and topnotch gastronomic experiences from some of Latin America’s most critically-acclaimed restaurants. Get in touch with us today and book your tour.
Summer is a good time to plan your Valle de Guadalupe winery tour. Different people have different ideas about when summer starts and ends, however, for our purposes, let’s call summer June, July and August. June is when the country restaurants, also known as campestre, start to open, so it’s a perfect time to visit if you have food on your mind. And the annual vendimia, or wine harvest festival, comes around in August. If you’re like most people and worried about it being too darn hot, don’t be. While the sun shines bright, daytime temperatures only reach sunbathing levels and nights in Guadalupe are always cool.
The Vineyards in Summer
Summer is flowering time for vines so, although the harvest won’t begin until Fall is either upon us or just round the corner, you’ll be assured of whole hillsides covered in flowers, which can be a wonderful sight. A wine grower is a gardener at heart, though she or he practices the art on a grand scale, and all gardeners love to be busy. They also like to know that people are watching what they do. And they’ll be doing a lot because summer is a busy time in the vineyard. Pruning was over some time ago and the harvest is when things will really heat up but there’s plenty going on.
The Valle de Guadalupe experience, though, isn’t just about Mexico wine tours, as delightful as they are. It’s also, among other things, for the birds: the gray thrasher, which is the endemic bird of the Baja, is found here, as are California thrashers, California gnatcatchers and lots of different kinds of hummingbirds. If you’re a serious birder, you might want to take some extra time after the tour to head for the coast, where you will see in a day more ducks than most people can even think of, as well as long-billed curlews, falcons and if you’re lucky, an albatross or two.
Hummingbirds, of course, mean flowers and you won’t look at the borage and nasturtium flowers for long without realising that they are in your salads. There are so many vineyards, wineries and restaurants in Valle de Guadalupe that we like to change things up regularly, which means if you join us on three different Valle de Guadalupe winery tours, chances are you’ll see different places each time. It’s a treat for the eyes and the scents are so heavenly you’ll think you’ve found paradise. At the end of the day, however, rest assured that we never forget the main purpose of the vine, which is to produce the perfect foil for a good meal. And we know exactly where to take you for something delicious to eat.
You’ll choose the dishes and the wine, of course, because choosing what you’re going to eat and drink is a big part of the pleasure of eating out, but if it were us we’d probably be going in high summer for a chilled white wine like a local Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc or Semillon and, to eat, something fairly light. Maybe a selection of tapas, a frittata or even a pizza. Whatever you do, don’t miss out on the salads; a fresh winery tour salad is a delight many of our customers have raved about.
Summer Will Be Here Soon
People have been making wine in Mexico for more than 500 years, so it’s not surprising that they know how to get things right. If you’re a wine lover – or just someone who likes a glass of something good now and again, and would like to see where and how it’s made, contact us today and book your tour.
Ask a wine lover what the most important thing is in winemaking. The answer will tell you a lot about the person. Not much about wine.
Some will say it’s climate and point out that most wine comes from one of only three climates: Mediterranean, continental and maritime. QED. Others, though, say “No, no, it isn’t the climate, it’s the place.” Except, of course, that true wine lovers don’t say “place”; they say “terroir”.
What Is “Terroir”?
Well, the French like to have their say and it is a French word so this is what l’Organisation Internationale de la Vigne et du Vin said in 2010: terroir is “an area in which collective knowledge of the interactions between the identifiable physical and biological environment and applied vitivinicultural practices develops, providing distinctive characteristics for the products originating from this area.” Or, if we dare translate the long-winded frogs, it’s “a place where everyone knows what they’re doing.”
What about the Soil?
Some wine lovers would add that the nature of the soil is not irrelevant: Chablis grows best in a clinging white clay while anyone drinking a red Bordeaux would like to think the vines have had their roots in some well-drained gravel. But who are we to argue with l’Organisation Internationale de la Vigne et du Vin?
So What Does Baja Wine Country Have?
Join us on a Baja winery tour and you’ll find that Baja California settles the argument by saying that it’s actually both.
If you were to go higher into the Sierra, you’d find cooler summers and in winter there could actually be frost on the ground but that’s not where wine is made.The climate in the area where vines are grown is Mediterranean. Summers are dry and mild and the winters cool and (sometimes) rainy.
As for the soil, those Bordeaux growers would dig their hands into this well-drained and stony soil – and they’d smile. They’d recognize this as a perfect place to grow Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.
Do people actually know what they’re doing? Well, sixteen million gallons of wine are made here every year, and the people who drink it are generally smiling as broadly as those Bordeaux growers we mentioned.
Come and See for Yourself
But don’t take our word for it. Contact us today and book your tour.