Cinque Terre, Italy
People have become more interested in where there food is being produced, and what is a better way to experience that first hand than in Italy. Agritourism, or Agritourismo, involves any agriculturally based operation or activity that brings visitors to a farm or ranch of some kind and emphasizes on the idea of “farm to table” type of daily life. Agritourism is growing in popularity and has shed light on a new way of seeing the world. In order to be considered an agritourist destination, the place of operation must meet a series of requirements and still be sustaining.
Since being in Italy we have already experienced being an agritourist, but we have also been able to experience the agritourism just by simply walking through Italy. During our hike in Cinque Terre, one of my favorite things I have done on this trip, we were hiking through the cliffs of local vineyards and farms who utilize terraced farming practices. Cinque Terre is a privileged place for natural resources, and agritourism plays a large role in these five towns. So we got to see another side of farming that we had not seen yet. The grape vines were placed in all different directions within the mountain and had various types of vegetables and plants mixed in with them. We knew this was a place for agritourism because the land they were farming on was fenced in and had sign along the fence to be used for this purpose. As the “farm to table” movement still grows, our small group got to grow in the knowledge we will take home with us in the way people here rely so heavily on the ground we literally walk on.
Also, Cinque Terre is considered to be endangered land according to UNESCO. Park administration annually organizes work camps to help inhibit the phasing out of agricultural terraces and the restoration of the desired wine soil. This rescue requires both consolidation and rebuilding of dry stone walls that support the vineyards. -Kourtney C.