The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in collaboration with the Georgian National Tourism Administration, proudly organized the 1st UNWTO Global Conference on Wine Tourism, which was held in the Kakheti wine region of Georgia on 7-9 September 2016.
For 8000 years, wine grapes have been cultivated in Georgia. Proclaimed by archeologists to be the “Cradle of Wine”, Kakheti, Georgia´s main wine-producing region and of one the oldest regions in the world, is the land of hospitable, open-hearted people that live surrounded by monasteries, ancient castles and glorious churches. Kakheti is characterized by its unique vine grape varieties, ideal climate, countryside, and centuries of exceptional winemaking experience. Kakheti is home to 65% of Georgia’s vineyards, harvesting 80% of the country’s grapes. Unique and award winning Georgian wines and brandies are produced there, using ancient techniques by generations of small farmers.
The event convened over 200 participants including representatives from the Ministries, Destination Management Organizations (DMOS), National Tourism Organizations (NTOS), and tourism experts from nearly 50 countries. It offered a unique opportunity to discover the richness of local Georgian culture and to exchange innovative ideas to promote wine tourism between destinations, a key component of gastronomy tourisdm and a growing pillar in the strategies of diversification of many destinations. The unique and dynamic format of the conference fostered the involvement of the attendees, as interactive debates took part at each table together between the participants and the expert speakers.
The conclusions of the Conference will be a compilation of all the information debated during each meeting and will be uploaded soon.