Sleeping

Hotels are fairly thin on the ground, but that gap is filled by plenty of apartments, private rooms and guesthouses that lie scattered throughout the valley. Advance bookings are strongly recommended in summer.

Eating

The Vipava Valley is well-known for its wines, but local cheeses and air-dried pršut make the perfect accompaniment. A handful of rural restaurants, and even the occasional winery restaurant, are also present.

Drinking & Nightlife

Some of Slovenia's best wines make for fabulous drinking. Head to the wineries for a taste, then pack a picnic or sample the local wines at one of the region's restaurants. Make a beeline for Faladur for excellent local options and knowledgeable service.

Wine Tasting in the Vipava Valley

The constant winds, plus the proximity of the sea, and the sun on steep slopes, contribute to ideal conditions for wine production. Both reds and whites are produced, including fresh whites from the indigenous zelen and pinela grapes, and a total of 25 different grape varieties are grown across the Vipava's 2500 hectares of vines. The focus is generally on small-scale family producers, boutique wineries and chemical-free production.

It may help to get a big-picture view of wines, producers and flavours before you take to the back roads. For in-town tastings, try Faladur in Ajdovščina or Vinoteka Vipava in Vipava.

One way to take the hassle out of tracking down each winery (and let someone else do the driving) is by taking a tour. Winestronaut offers excellent vineyard and tasting tours and can arrange pick-ups around the valley.

Recommended labels to try (and estates to track down) include:

Batič A versatile biodynamic wine producer, Batič has a winning suite of whites, reds, rosés and dessert wines. Visitors are welcome for tastings and cellar door sales, but ring ahead to let them know you're coming.

Burja Whites and reds, local zelen grapes and a Vipava version of the Istrian malvasia variety – Burja is a dynamic winery with plenty of local and international awards across its portfolio. Ring ahead to arrange a tasting.

Guerila This excellent biodynamic, boutique winemaker is the work of Zmago Petrič and his family. They work primarily with the local zelen and pinela vines, in a chemical-free environment. They offer tastings and estate tours if you contact them in advance.

Tilia Estate This respected winery produces a lot of different varieties on its 10 hectares, and is sometimes called the 'house of pinots', including pinot noir and pinot gris. It also produces merlot, cabernet sauvignon, sauvignon blanc, chardonnay and yellow muscat. Guided tours and tastings are usually possible whenever they're open, although ring ahead just to be sure.