Traveling to the Southern Côtes-du-Rhône Wine Region

The southern part of the Rhône Valley manages to combine the charms of Provence with the pleasures offered by wine. Following our wine trail you will be seduced by the beauty of the countryside and the small villages, and you will discover red, white and rosé wines full of character, the best known of them coming, without a shadow of doubt, from Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

Our wine trail through the southern part of the Rhône Valley passes through four départements: Ardèche, Gard, Vaucluse and Drôme. The region includes a number of towns interesting from a tourist point of view (Avignon, Orange and Vaison-la-Romaine), as well as a host of small villages of genuine charm (Séguret, Rochegude, Grignan, Taulignan, Gigondas, Crillon-le-Brave and so many more).

Not far from Vaison, the Dentelles de Montmirail offer the visitor landscapes of utterly breathtaking beauty which will delight casual walkers as well as agile climbers. As for lovers of wine, lulled by the mild climate they will delight in stopping over at one of the many wine producers whose vineyards border their route: there, often in an incredibly beautiful situation, they will be able to sample typical local red, white and rosé wines of high quality.

A Brief History of Southern Côtes-du-Rhône Wine Region

The Templar influence on the development of the vineyards of Châteauneuf-du-Pape in particular and Provence in general.

The Characteristics of Côtes-du-Rhône Wine

A Mediterranean climate, a great diversity in varieties of grape grown (for both red and white wines), and typical local wines which are often of a high standard.

Classification

There are several levels of appellation: two regional AOCs – AOC Côtes-du-Rhône and AOC Côtes-du-Rhône Villages – and five local appellations: Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Gigondas, Vacqueyras, Lirac and Tavel.

Insider Travel Tip

It’s quite impossible to claim to be able to see the whole region in one or two days: if you tried you would just come back frustrated. The southern part of the Rhône Valley is a huge area ideal for rather longer stays – at least 3 or 4 days – and for coming back to as often as you want.

For lovers of wine, they can concentrate on one small area and then come back and explore another the following year!

Planning a more extensive trip to French wine country?

Get info on our recommended wine tourism sites.

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Categorized as Wine

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