Champagne arouses the senses: the eyes feast on vines parading up hillsides and vertical processions of tiny, sparkling bubbles; the nose breathes in damp soil and the heavenly bouquet of fermentation; the ears rejoice at the clink of glasses and the barely audible fizz; and the palate tingles with every sip. The imagination and the intellect are engaged as Champagne cellar visits reveal the magical processes – governed by the strictest of rules – that transform the world’s most pampered pinot noir, pinot meunier and chardonnay grapes into this Unesco World Heritage–listed region’s most fabled wines.
Despite the prestige of their vines, the people of Champagne offer a warm, surprisingly easygoing welcome, both in the stylish cities and along the Champagne Routes, which wend their way through villages to family-run cellars and vineyards.
These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Champagne.
Whether it’s a guided tour of a historic landmark, private tasting of local delicacies, or an off-road adventure — explore the best experiences in Champagne.