This summer, more visitors than ever before look set to visit Cornish vineyards as wine tourism comes of age on the south-facing, increasingly vine-covered slopes of the far west.
Cornish Wine Tours, the first travel experience of its kind in Cornwall, is reporting a surge in interest and high booking numbers, thanks to a buoyant English wine scene and improved transport links into the Duchy.
Founder Kate McBurnie said: “We’re certainly talking to people who are planning their trips to Cornwall based around visiting vineyards, having enjoyed similar experiences in other wine-making counties like Kent and Hampshire.”
She added: “The new routes into Newquay Airport, the improved A30, and the double summer timetable of GWR services all allow more tourists on a whistle-stop summer visit to the UK to make the journey to Cornwall, and vineyards are high on the list of things they want to experience.”
Malcolm Bell, chief executive of Visit Cornwall, welcomed the news that visitor numbers to vineyards are rising.
“The vibrant food and drink scene has helped make Cornwall a truly global destination,” he said. “Vineyards, breweries and distilleries are all part of the attraction, and Cornish Wine Tours is a great asset, offering a truly immersive experience as well as adding additional revenue for our wineries.”
Cornish Wine Tours was launched last year, and McBurnie now runs a busy schedule of full and half day tours between March and October, visiting vineyards including Camel Valley, Trevibban Mill Vineyard, Knightor Winery, Polgoon Vineyard and Orchard and Bosue Vineyard.