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Les Grappes & Le Parisien
Tout ce que vous avez toujours voulu savoir sur le vin sans jamais oser le demander

Definition of wine tourism

Visit of the cellars and tastings at the winegrowers’ places

Wine tourism is above all about meeting people. While strolling around the estate, you will discover the history of the castle or the methods of cutting the grapes. Indeed, it is by exchanging with the owners, the winegrowers or the grape pickers that you will dive into their universe.

Wine tourism is also a tasting experience for the most discerning wine lovers!

Accompanied by expert oenologists, you will learn, perhaps blindfolded, to describe the wines: fruity, mineral or round in mouth. These one-day mentors will make you an experienced amateur, so that you can then pass on these skills. Because yes, wine tourism is the interaction between a passionate professional and an interested amateur.

And that’s why you absolutely have to try wine tourism!

Wine tourism: innovative activities

If you want to get off the beaten track, the most inventive winegrowers will make you discover their profession… differently !

For those closest to nature, the winegrowers will propose hikes in their vineyards and to give a few shots of pruning shears during the harvest period. For others, more academic, to participate in internships and conferences in wine academies. Excursionists can also make their own wine, spend one or more nights at the Château or try to create their itinerary type « Wine Route ».

Without a doubt, you will find your happiness!

Appearance and development of wine tourism in France

Visiting the vineyards: a concept that is not new

The strongholds of French wine production such as Bordeaux or Burgundy now offer visitors classic experiences: visits to vineyards, tastings… Although France is a reference in wine, wine tourism was born in the 1970s on the lands of Uncle Sam, in California. The phenomenon arrived in Europe, Japan and South Korea in 1980 with initiatives such as the Best of Wine Tourism or the Great Wine Capitals Network. Today more than just a fashion, the wine and wine tourism figures are turning heads.

Wine tourism is tending to develop and is seeing its number of followers increase. The challenge for winegrowers: diversify, with more innovative services to attract more visitors. Vine professionals will have to redouble their imagination to offer an immersive and personalized experience to modern wine tourists.

3 things to know about the development of wine tourism

Like Napa Valley in California or Chianti in Tuscany, French wine-growing regions are adapting and attract several million visitors each year. Curious people from all over the world want to discover the universe behind the name of the French Grands Crus. Metropolitans too, since they represent 58% of oenotourists in France: a total of 10 million pilgrims visit the country’s terroir each year. France has seen its number of visitors, linked to wine tourism, increase by more than 30% in a few years.

In short, the professionals in the profession have a major challenge to face! Fortunately, impossible is not French, Napoleon once said (a great lover of good vintages, let’s remember)! Tourism figures are increasing, which opens up a considerable field of possibilities for winegrowers and innovative and varied experiences for French and foreign visitors.

So let’s take our pens, and together we’ll write the history of wine tourism with the help of Clusters!

The Great Wine Routes in France and around the world

If we had to write a definition of wine tourism worthy of the Petit Robert 2018, it would give: « Wine tourism, or wine tourism, is a form of tourism based on the discovery of wine-growing regions, the wine grower’s profession and their productions »… not very digestible, we grant you that!

This concept will seem recent to most of us, but it is not: the Alsace Wine Route will celebrate its 65th birthday this year. Did you say Wine Routes?

The Wine Routes are countless. From Burgundy to Cahors, from the Côtes du Rhône to Champagne, you can take these roads, on foot or by bike, discovering breathtaking landscapes. These hectares of cultivation will surely make you realize how dangerous it is for a winegrower to work in these wide spaces, sometimes very winding as are the Côtes-Rôties.

Located in Alsace or elsewhere, the actors of the Vine and Wine industry, and their Routes, are now referenced thanks to the 67 destinations labelled « Vignobles et Découvertes ».

So, what are you waiting for?

Lucas Chartier

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