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Gastronomy

Exciting adventures for big families in Tokaj

  • Novitatis
As a big family, trips are not as easy as we might think. It is no coincidence that the needs of big families have become a key focus of national tourism developments: more and more service providers are preparing to welcome them, both in terms of infrastructure and supply. Play corners and games that occupy the older children are mushrooming. Moreover, the trend is being extended by some service providers to the level of the full experience offer and are preparing with programs especially for children. Surprising at first, but wineries are no exception.
As a big family, trips are not as easy as we might think. It is no coincidence that the needs of big families have become a key focus of national tourism developments: more and more service providers are preparing to welcome them, both in terms of infrastructure and supply. Play corners and games that occupy the older children are mushrooming. Moreover, the trend is being extended by some service providers to the level of the full experience offer and are preparing with programs especially for children. Surprising at first, but wineries are no exception.

Having a big family, we rarely think that wineries and wine-cellars can be great program options for our outings. Especially if we have really small kids in our team. We wouldn’t even think how many exciting adventures a wine-cellar can hide for children. Beyond the classic play corner and thematic workbooks, we can see examples of must or syrup tastings created following the example of wine tasting, or playful cellar and vineyard tours with animators and many more colourful program options.

Holdvölgy Wine Cellar in Tokaj is a real pioneer in the field of wine tourism experiences: their leisure centre host many experiences for adults and children. It is especially unique that they look at wine tasting and the cellar tour itself with a holistic attitude: we can learn not only about the wines, but they cover everything from the volcanic rock that forms the soil of the wine region, through the history of winemaking to the built environment on their thematic cellar tours. On their historical tour, they invite us on an imaginary time travel to get lost in the past centuries. On the cellar tour combined with treasure hunting, we can walk within almost 500 years of walls in the largest cellar system of Mád, almost 2 km long. During the one-hour walk, large sections can be wandered in the oldest cellar branches, five to six hundred years old, as well as in the passages added in the following centuries. On the adventurous underground walk, in the cellar a map-based treasure hunt takes wine enthusiasts to bottles hidden among the barrels, designated for tasting. The tasting includes a total of 6 or 8 different wines, depending on whether guests choose the regular or exclusive wine line. Of course, the tasting lines also include gold-medal winner wines from domestic and international wine competitions.

But how can this special wine tasting experience be related to children? Holdvölgy Wine Cellar was really unique in this field, as they thought not only of wine-loving adults, but also of the smaller children who had not yet consumed wine Following the example of their extraordinary cellar tour, a treasure hunt especially for minors was born, where instead of wine specialties, local syrups and chocolates are hidden at various points in the cellar. It is the children’s task - just like that of the adults - to discover the hidden treasures with the help of a map, and then, if they have skilfully solved the task, to consume the well-deserved reward.

Programs for adults and children can be run in parallel, so no one will be bored from the family. Such an early experience associated with wineries can play an important role later in the children’s character development: these positive memories lay the foundation for the love of domestic wines and can promote conscious wine consumption in adulthood. The program needs to be reserved in advance, and mainly at special events such as Easter, the winery workers also prepare thematic treasure hunts, where children can embark on an adventure in a larger group. To keep up with these, you’d better pay attention to their programs throughout the year. And even if this is not convincing enough, the special treasure hunt experience should be included in the obligatory elements of our trip to Tokaj only because it has won the award for the best wine tasting-cellar walk experience in Hungary for two consecutive years.