Israel’s main wine-producing regions are: Shomron region, Galilee, Negev Desert , the Judean Hills and the Samson region. Over 80% of the vineyards are located in Samson, Galilee or the Shomron regions. During the last twenty years, the Israeli wine industry has experienced a boom and there are now over 350 wineries with many offering extensive wine tours. Here’s our list of five wineries you can visit.
One of the largest and oldest wineries in the country, it produces 15 million bottles annually. Visitors are welcome to take part in workshops and tours, as well as wine tasting. A cultural center offers other activities for tourists including a look into the history of the winery, which Baron de Rothschild set up in 1882.
This winery is built at the foot of the Tel Arad Fort, a mere ten minutes from the vineyards of the Yatir Forest. It was founded as a joint venture in 2000 by the local vineyard owners and the Carmel Winery. This winery has been awarded with exceptional recognition, its wines rated among top wines in Israel by international and local wine critics. The Negev desert climate makes their process of wine making unique. If heading south, this winery should be a sure stop.
An iconic place located not far from the beautiful town of Zichron Ya’akov, this winery was established in 1952 and is situated in an old perfume factory. It has since expanded and now the Binyamina winery offers wines under five different labels. You can enjoy wine workshops, a short film and a vineyard tour. Bring the little ones with you – they offer grape juice tasting for underage visitors!
Tishbi Estate Winery
Located in the seaside town of Zichron Ya’akov, and established by Baron de Rothschild over a century ago, wine lovers can tour the six vineyards owned by the winery, sample the wine and learn about the history surrounding it. Over a million bottles are produced every year. This winery also produces delicacies such as wine jellies, jams and chocolates.
Golan Heights Winery
This winery has been pioneering wine-making techniques since the early eighties. Visitors can take a tour of its cellars and vineyards, view a short movie explaining the history of the area and enjoy a wine-and-cheese tasting that features local cheeses. The Gamla, Golan and Yarden labels produced here are distributed internationally. Don’t miss out on visiting this winery, with its gorgeous mountainous backdrop!
Although of all the wineries you come across on your travel throughout Israel will be worth a stop and taste, these five should be on your itinerary.