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More than 10 million tourists visit Italian wineries

More than 10 million tourists visit Italian wineries

As everyone knows data regarding wine tourism in Italy is uncertain but Wine Monitor by Nomisma makes us think that wine tourists might be double what we thought up until now

Castello della sala barrel ageing area

Seen for you by Donatella Cinelli Colombini


This research has been carried out by Denis Pantini from Nomisma and financed by the Consorzio vini del Trentino. This is what they say: 9% of foreign tourists and  4,7% of Italians travel thanks to a prevalently gastronomic interest. Out of caution, regarding especially the figures to follow, it must be said that Bankitalia indicates on the other hand in 730.000 (2012) so 1,5% of the total the foreign visitors attracted by wine and food. More similar to the Nomisma percentages are though those that come from the Osservatorio Nazionale del Turismo that however regard 2010.

Valpolicella wine store and restaurant

Going back to the percentages indicated by the research centre in Bologna these are the figures available: 16 million foreigners and 7,8 Italians considering all our compatriots, children included, as the wine and food tourism is made up mostly of “day trips”, (86% of the total according to WineNews) so a journey with a radius of less than 100 km from home.


This information seems to increase the number of visitors of Italian wineries. In if fact if it is true that the number of visitors for wine and food go to visit the “mysterious underground Bacchus locations” there is however a quota of them that visits more than one winery during the year.


Antonelli Agivi-wine tourism in Umbria

To conclude, although with great caution, we can make a guess regarding the number of visitors, of the 21,000 wineries open to the public, to be superior to 10 million guests, and doubles the estimates made up until now. We are clearly making a hypothesis. No winery has a ticket service similar to museum a there is no research able to tell us on average how many wineries a wine lover visits during the same year. However we do know that Florio in Marsala, and Brolio in Chianti Classico together receive more than 100.000 yearly visits and they are not the only ones to receive a massive and growing flux of wine lovers.


Agivi wine tasting at San Michele

In returning to the recent study by Wine Monitor –Nomisma we find a ranking of the most love by wine tourists, in order, Tuscany followed by Sicily, Puglia, Sardinia, then Trentino and Veneto on a par. In choosing the area to be visited the beauty of the landscape is of upmost importance and in this too it is an area in Tuscany to beat all the rest: the Colline Senesi (29%), followed by Franciacorta (13%), vineyard terraces in Liguria (12%), Trentino and Langhe both with 11%.


The wine lovers’ presence brings financial benefits to wineries and not only: 24% of them buys wine from the region in stores and win shops while only 11% buys directly in the producing winery.

Pantini presents Wine Monitor

All of this analysis has brought Denis Pantini of Nomisma to suggest more commitment on wine tourism as a possible lifeline for the small wineries that actually are 70% of the total and who in this moment are in great difficulty with sales because they are not of the right size to offer their bottles to supermarkets (65% of the total sales of wine) and neither for exporting. For them, says Pantini, a really important opening could come from wine tourism <<In Italy we are certainly not lacking quality wines or areas of value from an environmental and landscape point of view, but we without doubt not very good at creating networks”. It is necessary to understand, to appreciate the wine tourism opportunities, if our limits in guaranteeing a long lasting sustainability for the activities in the area>>.

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