18. 8. 2014
No summer is complete without taking part in a wine pilgrimage. Stroll through places where you can feel the history while tasting fine wine!
Tours of the Czech vineyards will lead you to the sunny hillsides where high quality Czech wines come from, as well as allowing you to experience unique wine cellars and picturesque wine cellar streets. The most vineyards can be found in South Moravia, which is the warmest area of the Czech Republic.
Znojmo - City of Virtue
If you like white wine, you must take a trip to the historic city of Znojmo. And there you should definitely visit Louka monastery, because the history of the former center of spiritual life includes the bright side of worldly life - you just have to see the giant wine cellars that are located there. Take a peek inside the barrel making and wine museum or the Romanesque crypt and at the end of the tour a wine tasting awaits you. Countless wine themed trips can be taken around Znojmo. The best way to admire the beauty of the vineyards and picturesque landscape is from the saddle of a bicycle asthe whole of South Moravia is interwoven with wine trails. The most popular destinations include Blue Cellars in Nove Šaldorf, Painted cellar in Šatov, decorated with folk paintings or the famous Šobes vineyards in Podyjí National Park. In early September, in the historical center of Znojmo a traditional historical gathering of grapes will take place where young wine from this year's harvest will flow!
Mikulov – a city with the scent of the South
Another important center of wine making is the city of Mikulov. Its dominant feature is a Baroque castle, where you will discover the largest domestic exhibition of wine making and viticulture with a unique giant wine barrel. Now you can now take a tour with a guide of not only the castle but also the entire historic center of the city. In addition, a small tasting of local white wine will again await you at the finish. Mikulov is at its most vibrant during the second weekend in September, when the popular Pálava grape harvest takes place. A trip to the surroundings is also worth your while. Did you know for example, that one of the oldest examples of human artistic creation - the about 25 000 year old statue of a woman made of fired clay named the Venus of Dolní Věstonice - comes from the vicinity of today’s Mikulov?
Modern winemaking on ancient soil
Near Mikulov is another of the places that wine tourism enthusiasts should definitely not overlook in their itinerary, if only because the prominent feature of Moravia, the Pálava hills, can be beautifully seen from there. The mentioned location is the unique and ancient Sonberk vineyards, whose history dates back to the 13th century. Wine from these sites was delivered to the court of Empress Maria Theresa. The winery, established there since 2003 and last year declared as the best winery in the country, naturally follows this tradition, but with the use of modern elements. Its new building, a remarkable architectural masterpiece perfectly fitting into the Pálava landscape, is proof of this. The winery produces authentic white select wines exclusively from their own grapes. Wines with a distinct fruitiness, high minerality and exciting spiciness, namely varieties such as Riesling, Pálava, Tramíner, Sauvignon and Pinot Gris do really well at the vineyard. At Sonberk you can pair their tasting with tour of the winery and vineyards.
Valtice Wine Salon
You can finish your South Moravian wine journey at the National Wine Center, which is located in the Baroque chateau in Valtice. In the beautifully restored castle cellar the Wine Salon of the Czech Republic is available to visitors, with its permanent tasting of top rated wines from all over the Czech Republic, meaning also from other wine regions than South Moravia. And if you're already in Valtice, you can’t miss the grounds of Lednice-Valtice. This area is nicknamed the "Pearl of South Moravia" and is a UNESCO heritage site. The area is the largest artificial landscape in the world and includes a number of artistic masterpieces, such as the 23 meter tall Obelisk, commemorating since 1798 the peace agreement between France and Austria.