Things to do

Winery Tours

Sussex wine and vineyards near our campsites

Sussex wine is some of the best produced by the English wine industry, which is going from strength to strength. There’s no better place to visit vineyards, taste great wines and find out more about how they are produced than Sussex. Our Sussex campsites are perfectly placed for anyone wanting to visit wine producers and vineyards. Wild Boar Wood Campsite is particularly well-placed if you want to go on a wine tour as it is withing walking distance of The Bluebell Vineyard.

Evidence has been found that vineyards may have been introduced to England by the Romans but vines have not been a constant on the landscape. This is due to a once widely held belief that the climate was not right for viticulture. Times are changing though and today’s English and Sussex wine industry has its roots in a revival which began in the 1950s. English wine production now centres around the south of England, where the climate is more moderate.

Sustainability and Sussex wine

English wines have become more popular as people have become more aware of food miles and more interested in the provenance of the food and drink. In fact, there are now 500 vineyards in England. In addition, as the industry in this country has matured, so have the wines that are produced. English and Sussex wine can now hold their own against wines from countries more traditionally associated with wine production. Many have been the recipients of not just national but international accolades.

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Vineyards near Wild Boar Wood

The Bluebell Vineyard in Furner’s Green is one such vineyard. It has won many awards since the first vines were planted in 2005. The vineyard produces a range of sparkling wines with tasting sessions available from Monday to Saturday. Full tours of the vineyard and winery (for four or more people) are available on Fridays and Saturdays, led by enthusiastic members of their team. Visitors are also welcome to walk among the vines, explore their associated woodlands and even picnic within the grounds. In September you can learn even more about the industry and get hands on with a harvest-experience day. The Bluebell Vineyard is just two miles from Wild Boar Wood Campsite. It is a pleasant walk or very short drive along country lanes and a cross-country walking route between the campsite and the vineyard is being developed (ask the wardens for up-to-date information).

The Bluebell Vineyard

Another Sussex wine producer that is easy to reach during a stay at Wild Boar Wood is Bolneys. Started in 1972 with vines over three acres, the vineyard is one of the oldest in the area. Bolneys now has 39 acres of vines which produce grapes for red, white, rosé and sparkling wines. Tours and tastings are available and the estate is just over 20 miles away – a drive of around 25 minutes.

Bolneys Wine Estate

Camping near vineyards in Sussex

Stopham Vineyard is a wonderful vineyard whose story began in 2007 when winemaker Simon Woodhead planted 21,000 vines on the 15 acre estate. The wine contains only grapes grown on the estate in West Sussex. Stopham wine offers vineyard, winery and wine tasting tours on Saturdays between April and October, so fits perfectly with our camping season! You will gain a fascinating insight into how commercial wine is made and get close to all the equipment. You can also choose to add lunch by the river to your tour to make it even more of an enjoyable and informative day out.

Stopham Vineyard

There are many more vineyards across the south east – 32 in West Sussex at the time of writing, with more in neighbouring East Sussex, Kent and Surrey.  A great time to visit the vineyards is in May during English Wine Week.

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