Motovun Named Second-best Wine Tourism Destination in Europe

By 26 October 2019

October 26, 2019 - The European Cultural Tourism Network named Motovun the second-best European destination for sustainable cultural tourism in the wine tourism category. Motovun is thus positioned between two renowned French wine destinations, behind the first-placed Loire Valley and ahead of the third-placed Pays d 'Armagnac.

Glas Istre writes that the official proclamation of the best European destinations for sustainable cultural tourism in different categories was held in Granada, Spain, where Motovun also received the European Iter Vitis Award. 

The applications were evaluated by a jury of experts from several European countries, nominated by the organizers - European Network of Cultural Tourism and Project Partners - European Travel Commission and Europa Nostra and NECSTouR. The election was also supported by the Council of Europe's Iter Vitis Cultural Route.

In the competition of 55 destinations from 19 European countries, the best European destinations of sustainable cultural tourism included three Croatian destinations, each in its own category - Motovun, Krk and the Batana Eco-Museum from Rovinj, which placed first in its category. 

"Congratulations to all the wine tourism stakeholders in the Motovun Municipality. This is a huge recognition of everything that has been done so far and the motivation for an even greater momentum of Motovun as a wine destination," said Motovun Tourist Board Director David Matkovic on Facebook.

“It is the first recognition for all that has been done so far in the field of wine tourism. It is deserved by all the stakeholders of wine tourism, especially our winemakers, who have recognized the value of this segment and, in addition to their wine business, offer facilities such as winery management, lodging, wine tours…. We were not hoping for second place, so we are pleasantly surprised to be positioned between the two renowned French regions that have come a long, long way in the area of ​​wine tourism. We invited representatives of the two French wine regions to the Iter Vitis General Assembly, to the international wine tourism conference "Vitis - from the heritage to the brand", which will be held this year from November 14 to 16 in Motovun. Thus, Motovun will host the General Assembly of Iter Vitis, the Council of Europe's Cultural Route, which is another high-level wine event in the field of wine tourism. At the European level, the highest possible,” Matkovic points out.

The award was accepted by Motovun Mayor Tomislav Pahovic, who is also the president of the Motovun Tourist Board, which formally applied for the competition.

“It is a special and beautiful feeling, considering we are one of the top three finalists, with two truly reputable wine destinations in France. Being in such nice company, sharing experiences, and talking to people who engage in similar activities and have similar goals is always interesting. We are in talks with the finalists to come to Motovun for the Iter Vitis conference and maybe even sign a cooperation agreement and network our winemakers with the winemakers of these two famous French regions. The special European Iter Vitis Award, which we also received in Spain, is an additional recognition. It is an organization that deals with cultural tourism, which includes wine and everything that has to do with it. This means that they too recognized the quality of Motovun, the Motovun area as a wine area, and what we have to offer. They see the potential, of course, for further development. There is room for further development in the first-ranked French wine destination, the Loire valley, so how could there not be in Motovun?” Pahovic concluded.

Motovun can boast some of Croatia’s top winemakers - Benvenuti, Bertoša, Fakin, Facchin, Novak, Roxanich, Tomaz, Valenta - who make the best use of Motovun's natural resources for wine production, recognize the potential of wine tourism, and continuously invest in expanding production capacities and equipping wineries, especially tasting rooms and accommodations. There is excellent momentum in Motovun as a wine destination, and the opening of the specialized Wine & Heritage Hotel Roxanich has undoubtedly aided in this.

The international competition was open to tourist destinations across Europe who wished to present their results in sustainable cultural tourism across seven different categories. Motovun registered in the category of culinary heritage, wine, food, and gastronomic tourism, and applied under the title "Motovun - A cultural, historical and gastro-enological center of the interior of Istria".

Rovinj also continues to be successful, especially when it comes to the synergy of culture and tourism. This is confirmed by winning first place at the European Destination of Cultural Tourism in the category of intangible cultural heritage, which was awarded to the Batana Eco-Museum.

“Behind every award is a lot of seemingly invisible work, which is to say, behind the scenes. What I always emphasize is that our Association is characterized by a diversity of professions, knowledge and skills that are complementary and contribute to sustainable development in all segments - economic, cultural, social and environmental,” said Tamara Nikolic Đerić, the program manager of the Batana Eco-Museum, who took the opportunity to thank all members of the Casa della Batana - Batana House Association for their dedicated work with which they conveyed a voice about this Mediterranean gem - Rovinj.

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