Epic Brewcations: Top 8 International Beer Experiences

Epic Brewcations: Top 8 International Beer Experiences

Does your appetite for beer adventures surpass domestic borders? If our Top Unusual USA Beer Experiences peaked your curiosity for international opportunities, check out these unforgettable boozy tours, bars and accommodations abroad. You can sleep in a beer barrel, take a biking tour of Belgium breweries or explore the origins of South African beer-making by watching a woman home-brewing using ancient techniques.

 

Chicha de Jora. Photo courtesy of Explore Paragon.
Chicha de Jora. Photo courtesy of Explore Paragon.

1)  Tour A Traditional Andean Chichería (Sacred Valley, Peru)

As part of Explore Paragon’s 8-day tour of Macchu Picchu & The Sacred Valley, you can tour a traditional Andean chichería in Peru’s Sacred Valley. In the Andes, chicha de jora has been the drink of choice amongst indigenous groups for centuries and an integral part of Andean culture.  This fermented corn beer is pale yellow in color with a thick, milky appearance and a slightly tart aftertaste.  You can taste a variety of chicha made in-house by a local Quechua woman at an authentic chichería.  She will explain how the corn beer is made and demonstrate every step of the fermentation process.
Select tours with also include a live Andean musical performance at the chichería led by famous ethnomusicologist and cultural expert, Holly Wissler. While drinking chicha and playing sapo, a popular drinking game in the Andes, Holly will discuss traditional Andean music and its significance throughout surrounding rural Andean communities. Holly and the Q’eros Quechua group then will treat you to a live performance featuring various types of flutes and native Andean instruments.
In addition to this chicha experience, as part of this tour, booze lovers will also learn to make a pisco sour (Peru’s signature cocktail) from an expert sommelier, while in Cusco.  This 8 day tour starts at $3,998 per person.  Click here for more information.

Bike Across Belgium.  Photo courtesy of Bike Across Belgium.

Bike Across Belgium. Photo courtesy of Ciclismo Classico.

2) Beers, Benedict & The Battle Of The Bulge (Belgium)

Belgium’s rolling hills, romantic canals, quaint towns, charming castles, outdoor cafés and incredible restaurants make the country a cyclist’s dream. In addition to beautiful biking paths, there are 1,130+ beers brewed in Belgium — perfect for pairing with a day of pedaling. Trappist ales, abbey beers and lagers such as Stella Artois and Jupiler are all part of the fun. Choose from an array of wheat beers, brown ales, red beers, golden ales, saison beers based on old farmhouse recipes, and any number of regional brews. A Belgium Bike Tour with Ciclismo Classico is your best option for getting the full experience, as it gives you access to an array of boutique breweries, with chances to meet the brewers and ask questions. Rates for this nine-day vacation start at $4,495. Click here for more information.

Beer barrel. Photo courtesy of IgorAleks via shutter stock.

Beer barrel. Photo courtesy of IgorAleks via Shutter Stock.

3) Sleep In A Beer Barrel (Ostbevern, Germany)

Make your wildest beer dreams come true when you stay at Hof Beverland. You can snuggle up on a queen-sized bed inside of a wooden, nineteenth-century suds receptacle, which was still producing brews that made people tipsy until 1995. Also spend time relaxing in their beer barrel sauna. While you’re here, explore the area’s beer heritage at nearby Potts Naturpark Brauerei, which maintains traditional production methods since opening in 1769. The museum features the world’s largest beer label collection and the restaurant serves typical German fare paired with beers brewed in-house. Click here for more information.

Beer Cruise!  Photo courtesy of AmaWaterways.

Beer Cruise! Photo courtesy of AmaWaterways.

4) Christmas Beer Cruise Down The Danube (Europe)

Spend your holidays cruising down European waterways with an incredible collection of authentic ales and lagers with AmaWaterways’ 2015 Christmas Beer Cruise. “Hop” aboard AmaPrima where you will enjoy excursions to historic breweries with guided tours, as well as tastings and educational on-board discussions. This festive journey kicks off in Nuremberg, where you’ll savor some hot mulled Glühwein, wine featuring raisins and mulling spices. You will cruise through the charming regions, decked out in their holiday finest and filled with Christmas Markets, including stops in Regensburg, Salzburg and Vienna. Another highlight of the cruise is a beer pairing dinner presented by acclaimed beer expert and writer Don Russell. The seven-night Christmas cruise starts at $2,899 per person. Click here for more information.

South Africa Hops & Hippos. Photo courtesy of Africa Adventure Consultants.

South Africa Hops & Hippos. Photo courtesy of Africa Adventure Consultants.

5) Hops & Hippos (Johannesburg, South Africa)

Join African Adventure Consultants for a 13-day tour of South Africa’s best attractions, with visits to visits to Cape Town, the Garden Route, KwaZulu-Natal for a safari and Johannesburg. Your trip will be action-packed with game viewing, sightseeing, authentic cultural experiences and… beer! Learn about the origins of South African beer making by visiting the home of a woman who uses ancient techniques and sampling her traditional brews. For a more modern experience, you will visit breweries in Cape Town, Hermanus and KwaZulu-Natal to tour the
Southern Associated Maltsters in Caledon and SAB World of Beers in Jo’burg. You can’t leave Africa without a safari, so you’ll spend three days in Thanda Private Game Reserve with daily game drives and accommodations in a luxury tented safari camp. This 13-day tour starts at $3,929. Click here for more information.

Pub for New Zealand Cruise. Photo Courtesy of Royal Caribbean.

Pub Onboard New Zealand Cruise. Photo Courtesy of Royal Caribbean.

6) Historic Pubs Of Port Chalmers Cruise With Cheese Pairings (New Zealand)

If you think wine is the only booze that pairs well with cheese, the historic pubs of Port Chalmers outing will prove you wrong! Royal Caribbean offers a New Zealand trip onboard where you can take a signature shore excursion to explore the old port and visit several pubs. You will sample New Zealand beers and pair some with a platter of the country’s best cheeses. A knowledgeable guide will share stories of this famous port city while you wend your way through town, sipping Speight’s “Pride of the South,” the North’s Lion Red and DB Lager along the way. This 3.5 hour excursion costs $99. Click here for more information.

Shock Me beer-tail.  Photo courtesy of The Milestone.

Shock Me beer-tail. Photo courtesy of The Milestone.

7) Signature Beer Cocktails In An Old Stable (Kensingston, England)

Visit the majestic The Milestone boutique luxury property in Kensington for exquisite accommodations and beer-centric cocktails. You will feel like royalty on a property that overlooks Kensington Palace. Head to the property’s old stables for the aptly named bar “The Stables.” They serve several craft beer cocktails including “Shock Me,” featuring 75ml of Brown Ale (“Bishop Fingers”), 50ml bourbon, 25ml of Southern Comfort and one teaspoon of maple syrup.

 Combine all the ingredients in an ice-filled cocktail shaker before stirring gently for 10 seconds. Next, strain into an Old Fashioned glass over fresh cubed ice.

 Garnish with a crispy slice of maple cured bacon. This cocktail served at The Stables costs approximately $24. Click here for more information.

Interior of Cervejaria Trindade. Photo courtesy of Cervejaria Trindade.

Interior of Cervejaria Trindade. Photo courtesy of Cervejaria Trindade.

8) Beer Factory In An Old Covent (Lisbon, Portugal)

When a 1294 convent was destroyed by the 1755 earthquake, the nuns probably did not expect their home to be replaced by a brewery; however, the Cervejaria Trindade is still going strong, even after over 175 years of being Portugal’s oldest tavern. In 1834, the building made on the convent’s foundations became a beer factory and restaurant, with the patio area located where the cloister used to be. Today, it’s a beautiful place to savor Portuguese craft beers, named on a convent theme. Walls are covered with eighteenth century azulejos (traditional hand-painted tiles) depicting seasonal classic beer scenes. Beer is no longer brewed on site, but you’ll have a full selection to choose from and plenty of seafood as a supplement. Click here for more information.

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