Wine tourism is a concept that will probably seem very recent. In fact, it is not. Wine tourism was born in the 1970s in Mondavi, California. Little by little, visiting vineyards and tasting wines directly at the place of production became a trend in the United States and spread to the big cities (Washington DC, New York, San Francisco...). The countries of the New World quickly caught up with the trend, and Chile, Argentina and South Africa are now lands of wine tourism.
At the beginning of the decade, Europe, China, Japan and South Korea welcomed the first tourists who came to discover thelocal vineyardsand taste the wines produced there. Institutions then took initiatives that allowed wine tourism to develop worldwide.TheGreat Wine Capitals is a worldwide network of 10 cities and territories with a high potential for welcoming tourists with a commercial terroir: La Rioja, Bordeaux, Florence, Cape Town, Mendoza, Napa Valley and many others benefit from this designation.
Thefigures for wine tourism clearly show that the market has strong development potential. According to Atout France, between 2009 and 2016, the number of visitors who came to discover French vineyards increased by 30%, from 7.5 to over 10 million. It is from this observation that the Conseil Supérieur de l'Oenotourisme was born in March 2009. On the initiative of the Ministers of Tourism and Agriculture and attached to Atout France, the body brings together the actors of the wine industry and tourism in order to develop wine tourism in France.
As president of this project, Hervé Novelli (former minister in charge of trade, craft industry, SMEs and tourism under the Fillon government) is carrying out a series of actions to perpetuate and develop the market, for example with the "Vignobles et découverte" label. This label, created in 2009, lists 67 destinations offering a complete and attractive range of services to visitors: bed and breakfast, restaurants, visits to estates and wine tasting are all part of the selection criteria. On 20 November at the Palais de Congrès in Paris, the first National Wine Tourism Conference will be held, bringing together all the players in the wine tourism market around testimonies, round tables and speeches by professionals from the sector. If the Council's initiatives are continuing, it is becauseFrench wine tourismis doing well : Atout France has announced average annual growth of 4%, an encouraging figure for a country that has the ambition to position itself as a world market leader.
Les Grappes offers many activities and tastings at winegrowers' homes in all French wine-growing regions