Enotourism - what is worth knowing?

via Dawid Lipiec

Long gone are the days in Poland when alcohol was treated as a means to achieve merely a state of intoxication. Today, many people like to drink good, high-quality spirits for the sheer pleasure of the taste and their aroma. This is reflected in wine tourism, which is gaining in popularity. Enotourism, as it is referred to, is becoming more and more popular every year. What exactly does it involve, and where exactly is it worth going and seeing? Everything you need to know about oenotourism.

What is oenotourism?

So what is oenotourism and what does it consist of? In short, it is simply travelling to the vineyards. The aim of such trips is to taste local wines, see the vines with your own eyes and see how the wines are made.

The above explanation, while accurate, is nevertheless rather sparse, as the true essence of oenotourism is much broader. The aim of such visits is also to get to know the local culture, customs and, above all, cuisine. What's more, trips of this kind are often accompanied by visits to local monuments, admiring nature or the traditions of the local people. Although wine is the focal point of any trip, there is a wide variety of attractions alongside it.

How did oenotourism come about?

Now that you know what oenotourism is, it is now worth finding out when exactly such a field came into being. What made it wine drinking enthusiasts have left their homes in search of the places where their favourite spirits are made?

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As it turns out, oenotourism is not a modern invention. According to ongoing archaeological research, it was already popular in ancient times to go to the most popular vineyards. The modern variety of oenotourism as we know it today began in the 19th century. The extremely dynamic development of the railways, as well as the middle class in societies, made long-distance trips along wine routes possible. The fashion picked up considerably in the 1920s and became really popular in the 1970s. After the transition changes in the 1990s, oenotourism also reached Eastern Europe, resulting in a boom of this form of tourism in countries such as Romania, Moldova or the Czech Republic.

Where is it worth going?

What are the reasons for taking an interest in such tours? First of all, you can see where and how your favourite wines are made. What's more, it is possible to learning about new winesand also to buy them at much more attractive prices than in the shops. Of course, oenotourism also involves the possibility of experiencing the special atmosphere of the vineyards, having a nice time learning about the cuisine and traditions of the area.

So as you can see, the benefits of oenotourism are truly immense. But where is it worth going on such a trip? First of all, it is worth taking an interest in our native vineyards. Admittedly, they do not have such a long tradition as, for example, the French, but nevertheless many fantastic locations can be found in the Podkarpacie and Małopolska regions.

But where is it worth going abroad? There is no denying that the most attractive destination for wine lovers is Italy. The vineyards there are not only fantastic winesbut above all beautiful landscapes, interesting culture and a huge number of monuments. Tuscany, Umbria and Sicily are particularly recommended. On the European map, Spain is also worth noting, in particular Catalonia and Andalusia, regions famous for their fantastic wine.

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