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New Zealand wineries prove major attraction for holidaymakers

Almost a quarter of international tourists exploring New Zealand are opting to visit NZ wineries and vineyards during their stay, finds Emma Hyde. 

According to the latest figures from New Zealand Winegrowers, 24% of foreign travellers are choosing to take advantage of the country’s wide range of cellar visits, winery dining options and vineyard tours. This growth in wine tourism is proving a key opportunity for winegrowers to showcase their wines and increase public exposure.

To further boost figures, New Zealand Winegrowers have revamped their website to advertise over 450 different wine-based experiences, making it even easier for holidaymakers to plan their itineraries. These are categorised under four experience types:

  • Sip – cellar door tastings
  • Dine – dine in a winery setting
  • Stay – overnight accommodation in a vineyard
  • Play – onsite tours and experiences

“Wine tourism provides an exciting new opportunity for us to showcase our wines in the unique locations where they are grown and produced,” says New Zealand Winegrowers Global Marketing Director Chris Yorke. “Our visitors are also able to meet the people and hear the stories behind the brands.”

“We’re seeing evidence of just how much tourists are enjoying wine tourism in New Zealand through the strong TripAdvisor ratings our wineries are receiving”.

The average rating on TripAdvisor for such experiences is an impressive 4.6 out of 5 stars. It is also a huge benefit to NZ tourism to promote their wine tourism ventures; a NZ wine tourist will typically spend 6 days longer in the country and will explore at least one additional NZ region during their stay, compared with other tourists.

New Zealand Winegrowers will also partner Tourism New Zealand to develop tourism training courses for the wineries. Tourism New Zealand CEO Stephen England-Hall has been invited to deliver a keynote speech at the Romeo Bragato Conference later this month, one of the largest conferences for viticulturists in the country.

“Wine tourism has such wide appeal because visitors to New Zealand can explore wineries in any season, and across many regions during their stay,” says Tourism New Zealand CEO, Stephen England-Hall. “Our research has found that wine visitors spend more, stay longer, and visit more regions than the average international holidaymaker.”

“Nzwine.com/visit will enhance the experience that tourists have by providing useful information before and during their trip. This allows visitors to make the most of their stay, and go home with great stories and memories.”

2 Responses to “New Zealand wineries prove major attraction for holidaymakers”

  1. Mike says:

    In my experience these are way overrated and often a bit of a ripoff. It’s typically 10NZD to taste a couple of thimble fulls of wine, that has often sat in the bottle for a couple of hours. You are then given the chance of buying bottles at around 40NZD per bottle while comparable branded wines cost about 10-15 NZD in supermarkets.

    • Kiwi says:

      That depends where in NZ you visit. Winemaking in Waiheke Island persists thanks to tourism so the pay for pour is required. Elsewhere in the country you’ll rarely be charged more than $5, if anything, for a tasting.

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