Margaret River has the perfect location for growing and producing excellent wines. It has the ideal combination of rich gravel loamy soil, combined with the pure cool air of the Indian Ocean as well as the perfect Mediterranean climate with mild temperatures throughout the year. That’s why the Margaret River Wines are the true flagship for the Margaret River Region, producing 25% of all Australian premium wines. Below is how to tour this stunning wine region and 10 of the best Margaret River wineries that should be on your list.
A few interesting Margaret River Wineries Facts
Situated between Cape Naturaliste on the north, the Margaret River wine region extends over 140km south to Cape Leeuwin, near Augusta. What are the Margaret River wines known for? Here are five interesting facts about the wineries in the region:
- Margaret River Wineries are known for their Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon wines. But there are many more excellent wine varieties that you can try, like Shiraz and Semillon Blanc.
- After the first commercial vineyard started production at Vasse Felix Winery in 1967, the number of wineries has grown to over 160 within 45 years. Sustainability has become one of the key factors over the years. Many wineries are dedicated to producing preservative-free wine, while some specialise in organic and biodynamic winemaking. The region also holds the first Australian winery 100 % carbon neutral (Cullen wines).
- Margaret River Wineries are a great place to indulge in a culinary experience. During a Wine and food tour, you can taste excellent wines and some of the best fresh local produce, such as organic avocados, macadamia nuts, and ostrich. Many wineries also feature a restaurant on-site.
- Meeting the winemakers and tasting wines is a must, but some wineries offer you the chance to go even further. Did you ever think about a wine blending class, or have you ever wanted to become a winemaker yourself? You’ll get the chance to do so in Margaret River.
- Dive fully into the wine-making process by booking a farm stay to complement your winery visit.
How to best explore the wineries in Margaret River
A great way of learning about Margaret River wines is to go on a guided Wine Tour. If you want to learn about the winemaking process from vine to wine, choose a Wine and Food Tour. If you enjoy being active, cycle around the wineries during a Bicycle Winery Tour.
If you do not fancy sitting in a bus travelling from one winery to the next, this is an excellent way of combining physical exercise with wine and food tasting. I went on this tour; biking around Margaret River’s beautiful hills was great fun. I recommend it if you like to be active and don’t want to drive and drink.
Book the guided e-Bike Wine Tour in Margaret River
The Best Winery Tours and Food & Wine Tours in Margaret River
You can do all of them. Here is a list of the Wine Tours we recommend in Margaret River. Click the links below.
Check out the 6 Hour Margaret River Wine Tour
Check out the 7.5 Hour Margaret River Wine & Food Tasting Tour
A Self-Drive Winery Tour
The self-drive option allows you to decide which wineries you want to visit. From the Augusta and Margaret River Tourism Office or the Busselton Tourism Office, you can grab a list of all 160 wineries with a beautiful territory map. You can also get details about the type and features of each winery. Alternatively, hire a driver if none of you wants to miss out on the wine tasting. To rent a car, click the link below.
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10 Best Wineries To Visit in Margaret River
If you think that if you’ve seen one winery, you have seen them all, well, think again. The Margaret River region offers many high-quality wineries, from pioneers such as Vasse Felix and Cape Mentelle to boutique cellar doors with innovative wine production processes. From the +160 wineries available in the region, we have picked out the top 10 Margaret River Wineries. But if you want to visit more, here is a complete list of wineries to explore.
1. Vasse Felix
Vasse Felix is the oldest winery in Margaret River and one of the region’s top wineries. Their prime goal is to ‘make the best possible wine’, which they accomplish by intervening as little as possible. The Australian-inspired restaurant is trendy, so make reservations if you plan to have lunch here. Also, don’t forget to visit the on-site wine museum and art gallery. In 2018, Vasse Felix also acquired the known Watershed Winery.
2. Cullen Wines
Not only is Cullen Wines one of Australia’s most-awarded wineries, but it’s also the only carbon-positive winery in the country. Their focus is on biodynamic wines that they produce thanks to intelligent soil. They firmly believe that nature is perfect and that no additives are necessary. Have lunch at the winery restaurant that serves biodynamic products from their garden, or stay the night at the Cullen Homestead for the ultimate experience.
3. Voyager Estate
A visit to the Voyager Winery Estate is an absolute must, even if you are on a tight schedule and can only see a few wineries. The classic Dutch Style building is nestled in a massive estate with a beautiful garden home to various flowers, plants and roses. Visit in spring for the full experience with thousands of blossoms surrounding you. The Voyager Estate offers a 360° wine and culinary experience with various types of wine and food tours. The on-site restaurant is also an excellent location for lunch!
The Adinfern Winery produces intense red wines, dessert wines, fortified wines and port wines. This family pivoted its sheep farm to cultivate wine but kept some original decorations as a reminder of past activities. Stay the night in one of the four earth cottages on the estate if you’d like to immerse yourself in country life.
5. Leeuwin Estate
The Leewin Winery is one of the most famous wineries in the region and produces an award-winning Chardonnay (Art Series Chardonnay). It’s also well-known for its concert season. They organise a pop music festival every summer in the green courtyard adjacent to the forest. The scenery is truly spectacular, as are the music performances.
6. Cape Mentelle Winery
The Cape Mentelle Winery is located in a beautiful setting and has been producing excellent red wines for over three decades. They have helped make Margaret River a prime wine region on the map. Sustainability is one of the critical factors which is reflected in their wine production process and waste management. During summer, the winery organises Movies in the Vineyard at Cape Mentelle, a top-rated event among locals. You can taste wine in their barrel cellar and sip it in their beautiful garden.
7. Xanadu Winery
Xanadu Winery is a beautiful estate that focuses on producing premium wines. As one of the pioneers in Margaret River, the winery is a must-visit. The European-inspired restaurant features distinctive, innovative architecture and offers some excellent dishes to pair with award-winning wines. If you’re looking for a winery to visit with children, this is the one – the restaurant offers a kids’ menu and a playground on-site. Also, make sure to try one of the special releases that are only available at the cellar door.
8. Stella Bella Wines
Stella Bella Wines is a small winery in the southern part of the region. They have excellent white wines and offer a creative range of Luminosa, Suckfizzle and Skuttelbutt wines. The winery’s goal is to create a memorable wine experience while capturing the essence of Margaret River. To accomplish that, they produce their wines in small batches that show the unique flavour of each of the five vineyards. You can bring your picnic and enjoy a glass of Stelle Bella wine at the estate.
9. Fishbone Winery
The Fishbone Winery produces wines that reflect the natural beauty of the region. The on-site Japanese restaurant is great for enjoying an excellent lunch and a glass of Fishbone wine. If you’re in a hurry, a unique opportunity here is to get some chilled wine and sushi. This adds a whole other dimension to takeaway food.
10. Fraser Gallop Estate
Fraser Gallop is an award-winning boutique winery in a beautiful and peaceful setting. The winemakers value a hands-off approach, which leads to smooth and well-balanced wines that are both unique and collectable. Make sure to try the Cabernet wines, it’s the estate’s speciality, but the Chardonnay and Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc wines are also of high quality.
How to plan a Margaret River Wineries Trip
Whether on a guided Food and Wine Tour, a Bike and Wine Tour or a self-guided wine tour, they are all great ways to discover the Margaret River wineries that offer wine tasting and the opportunity to eat at their restaurant and go on a cellar tour. And dive deep into the rich food culture of South Western Australia, which is a jewel among the top 10 food regions in the world.
Considering the distance of 300 km from Perth city, I would allocate at least a long weekend or possibly an extended trip of one week or longer to see it all from Bunbury, Busselton, Dunsborough, Cape Naturaliste, Margaret River, Augusta, Cape Leeuwin, with so many fun things to do in the Margaret River Region
Where to stay in your Trip
Here are our recommendations for staying in the Dunsbourough Hills or in Margaret River Town.
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First published in 2013, last updated in Jan 2023