Media stories

There’s always a story to tell along the Classic New Zealand Wine Trail. You are welcome to draw from the following information to help build your stories and content.

hawkes bay church road winery tour

An unforgettable wine and food experience 

Three major wine producing regions, a capital city, rural towns and stunning coastline combine to create the Classic New Zealand Wine Trail. This self-guided, 380km wine trail takes visitors through the regions of Hawke’s Bay, Wairarapa, Wellington and across Cook Strait to Marlborough.

The trail covers 80 percent of New Zealand’s wine production regions and is home to 230 wineries... no wonder it has been described as one of the best wine drives in the world.

Key facts

  • More than 80% of New Zealand’s total annual wine production comes from the regions on the Classic New Zealand Wine Trail.
  • There are over 230 wineries along the Trail and more than 120 cellar doors.
  • Hawke’s Bay has 200 vineyards, 76 wineries and 32 cellar doors
  • Wairarapa has 107 vineyards, 33 wineries and 31 cellar doors
  • Marlborough has 120 wineries and 33 cellar doors. Marlborough’s Golden Mile has nine cellar doors within 6km
  • There are 100 road signs to follow
  • There are a multitude of vineyard cafes and restaurants along the Trail
  • Each region is famous for its own distinctive wine style and offers a complimentary experience for the wine enthusiast
  • Seven Farmer’s Markets along the Trail offer fresh seasonal produce for sample and sale, which is a great introduction to regional food specialties and provides the opportunity to meet the growers and locals.
  • Rumour has it that Wellington has more restaurants, bars and cafes per head of population than New York and is New Zealand’s coffee capital.

Hawke's Bay region info

Hawke’s Bay is New Zealand’s oldest wine-growing region with its roots dating back to 1851. Hawke’s Bay is renowned for producing premium rich, full bodied red wines. The warm maritime climate and varying landscapes also produce New Zealand’s richest and most complex Chardonnays.

Wairarapa region info

The Wairarapa’s first vines were planted near Masterton in 1883 and form part of the history of the region’s wine making story. Today, the Wairarapa is largely home to boutique producers located in the three sub-regions of Martinborough, Gladstone and Masterton, all connected by the Ruamahanga River. Together, these areas produce just 1.3% of New Zealand’s total wine production, but represent 2.8 percent of the land and over 9% of New Zealand’s winemakers.

Pinot Noir is the dominant grape variety in the region, but there are also plantings of Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer and Syrah.

Wellington region info

Wellington is New Zealand's capital city and a favourite among foodies. The easy-to-walk city centre is packed with bohemian cafes, top quality restaurants and exciting bars. A stunning harbour and vibrant waterfront add to Wellington’s unique character while Te Papa, our national museum; the cable car; botanical gardens and designer shops are popular with visitors.

Marlborough region info

Marlborough is New Zealand’s largest and most famous wine region and produces over 75% of New Zealand’s wine. It is the undisputed home of Sauvignon Blanc – world famous for its intense and pure flavours. Marlborough’s wineries round off the palate with a large range of world-renowned pinot noir, aromatics and methode traditionelle sparkling wines.

Important links