A picturesque view of the lush vineyard and beautiful winery at Chateau Des Charmes in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Photo: Niagara Airbus
Warm weather is just around the corner, and that means it’s almost time for another season of long walks through the vineyards, sharing a refreshing bottle of vino with that special someone while you appreciate a picturesque sunset, and indulging in the occasional Sunday brunch with the girls! Why not let someone else worry about the driving so all of you can sip away without worry?
Niagara Airbus’ Winery Tours let you do just that. The highly trusted and reliable tour bus company has been offering sightseeing tours within the region for 30 years, with door-to-door pick up from Niagara and Toronto area hotels.
“People are looking for various types of experiences, so we set up the winery tour to accomplish this for a complete ultimate experience for each guest,” she said. You’ve got two tempting tour packages to choose from. The Deluxe Niagara Wine Tasting Tour kicks off with a delicious lunch, complete with a panoramic view overlooking the beautiful Niagara River & Yacht Club in Niagara-on-the-Lake. You’ll stop at the breathtaking Chateau des Charmes Winery, where a meticulous team uses modern science and a lot of TLC to coax the best out of every vine. The staff there do ground-breaking research with unique grape varieties, blazing a trail for the future of the industry.
From there, you’ll move onto Inniskillin (which has a rich history in the region), before taking a journey along the historic Niagara Parkway. Don’t forget to shop in Niagara-on-the-Lake’s quaint downtown, which is known as the original Capital of Upper Canada! With its spectacular sights, regional culinary specialties and outstanding hospitality, the town is one of our country’s great natural treasures.
If you’re looking for more of a country vibe, Niagara Airbus has you covered there, too. The Wine Country Bus Tour allows you to take in Niagara’s scenic countryside while sipping the region’s finest wines. First you’ll stop at Inniskillin to indulge in their red, white, and award-winning icewines before arriving at Pilliteri Estates, a family-owned winery with a legacy that’s endured for more than six decades. Make sure to visit their original fruit market and family farm, and explore the one-of-a-kind barrel cellar, vineyard and winemaking facility. See all the details for both tours at niagaraairbus.com/Niagara-Winery-Tours.
The tour includes a visit to Reif Estate (another of Niagara’s founding-family wineries) with its 125-acre farm. Cap off your day with a stop at the boutique winery Small Talk Vineyards. Tucked away from the hustle and bustle of city living, this one is a fun winery that offers genuine hospitality, a lack of pretenses, and features coloured barrels around the property.
This tour also ends with a journey along the Parkway and an opportunity to browse downtown Niagara-on-the-Lake.
When Niagara started to become a popular destination for foodies and wine lovers years ago, Niagara Airbus seized the opportunity and began to expand into winery tours. They’re now well into their second decade of providing tours to discerning guests. The demand for inbound tours is only rising year over year due to an increase of various tourism markets to Niagara, said Christina Pietracupa, Sales-Conference Services Manager at Niagara Airbus.
“With so many new, upcoming wineries to experience, we felt that offering our award-winning Niagara wineries would benefit our customer, the wineries, and Niagara Airbus,” said Pietracupa, adding the company also offers large group tours to Trius, Peller Estates, Wayne Gretzky Estates, Jackson Triggs and many more across the region.
As the first quarter comes to a close, the 2018 season overall has been “a very productive year. Our average number of riders for our tours have increased year over year. We do anticipate more travelers as the season progresses.”
While you can Google “wine tours in Niagara” and find a smattering of other companies offering packages, Niagara Airbus has a few advantages. Unlike many, the company doesn’t require a minimum or maximum number of guests to each winery. Any size group can take a custom tour, and there are group discounts available. You’ll have knowledgeable winery and Tour Guides to enhance your tour experience. Price options are available for each experience, and you can watch for online discounts.
Solid partnerships with the wineries featured in each tour and excited adventurers looking for a memorable weekend escape keep buses full, said Pietracupa, adding the goal is always to provide an excellent guest experience. Niagara Airbus welcomes potential opportunities and partnerships.
Along with winery tours, Niagara Airbus also offers door-to-door airport shuttle service to Niagara, so you can book a shuttle from the airport, and get a discount when you add a tour. All tour costs are inclusive of tastings.
With that kind of value, Pietracupa looks forward to seeing the company expand its offerings to even more areas. She said Niagara Airbus is always looking to grow and that the next possibility for a new tour may be the Niagara Bench.
Visit niagaraairbus.com for more information about winery tours, airport service, multi-city shuttle service, charters and the company’s fleet of vehicles.
Club Italia, Niagara Falls
Shop, sample, and socialize for a good cause at Spring to the Market, a hands-on marketplace with a twist! Admission is $5 and includes entrance and access to select spa services, demonstrations and photo booth. For a small donation, you can also treat yourself to mini manicures, workshops, or test your luck with our mystery raffle to win AMAZING prizes! Don’t forget to pick up some tasty treats from the Black Sheep Lounge as you chat and relax at our Flower Lounge Cafe. Proceeds from this event will go to the Niagara College Nourishing Minds Program in support of students who struggle with food insecurity.
Photo: Niagara College
April 21, 10 am to 3 pm
Heartland Forest, Niagara Falls
A Handmade artisan show featuring 35 unique local crafters.
April 21/22, 28/29
Get Fresh in the Valley is a self-guided wine tour of up to 21 wineries in Niagara's Twenty Valley wine country. It’s one of the most brilliant ways to learn about and stock up on our VQA wines. Our wineries are spread across 5 sub appellations that produce some of Canada's most highly acclaimed wines: Beamsville Bench, Twenty Mile Bench, Short Hills Bench, Lincoln Lakeshore, and Creek Shores. This is such a great event to showcase the new vintage and aromatic wines paired with fresh spring flavours.
You'll meet winemakers with remarkable stories and explore fantastic food pairings offered by our local chefs – farm to table is our local philosophy. Included with your passport is the opportunity to assemble your own Get Fresh Cookbook by collecting delicious spring recipe cards that feature the food and wine pairings you'll be sampling on your winery tour.
Can’t make it out for entire weekend? Then our Sunday passport is perfect and a local favourite! This passport can be purchased for Sunday’s only, providing access for both Sundays of the program.
Get Fresh is the perfect way to kick off the spring entertainment season and stock up on some incredible wines. Click here for Get Fresh in the Valley Feature Pairings!
See these and more photos of this month's events on our Facebook page, and be sure to 'Like' us! Get out and enjoy all Niagara has to offer!
Holidays in the Beach Handmade Makers Market - The Sanctuary - Centre for the Arts - Fort Erie
Photos: Allison Smith
Photos from our Media Partner
Enter our Monthly Draw to win a Wine Country Tour with Niagara Airbus! The winner is entitled to bring two guests on their tour, and pick up and drop off door-to-door from any Niagara hotel. You'll tour and taste the fine wines of Inniskillin, Small Talk Vineyards, Pillitteri Estates, and Reif Estates. Experience the fine countryside of our vast, beautiful wine region, with free time to shop and browse in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Expires April 30, 2019.
You could be the lucky winner...enter today!
Visit our Monthly Draw page to enter the contest. You will receive our monthly e-newsletter, Destination Niagara Falls News, and your name could be drawn as our next winner.
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