Whilst the concept of being a ‘beer tourist’ is still fairly new to many beer drinkers, the practice of travelling to a destination for its beer is quickly gaining momentum in craft beer circles.
Thanks to the passion of craft and speciality beer enthusiasts and the craft beer boom, beer tourism is quickly becoming a reason, if not the sole attraction, for a day trip, long weekend away or a holiday. These days, true craft beer lovers are often travelling all over the world to explore breweries and sample the region’s finest offerings.
Why is it becoming more popular?
The craft beer revolution has led to a rise in demand for artisan beers. Craft beers and the emergence of ‘microbreweries’ are part of a much wider societal trend towards authenticity and localism, resulting in an unprecedented period of growth in the once incredibly niche industry. As a result, ‘beer tourists’ are flocking to regions where the trend is burgeoning, or where a strong history of brewing already exists. The historical aspect of beer tourism is also important, especially in areas where abbey and Trappist beers are brewed.
Destinations for beer tourists
Popular European destinations for beer tourists include Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, Ireland and the Czech Republic. All these countries have a very strong brewing heritage, as well as cultural variation in beer types. Travelling to these regions affords tourists an opportunity to not only enjoy the beer, but also to educate themselves.
Other destinations around the world where ‘beer tourism’ is quickly gaining traction are Australia, Canada and the USA. The craft beer revolution has also drawn attention to niche Asian and African beers, yet the beer tourism industry in these regions is still much smaller than its European counterparts.
You can take a tour of our monastery in Ghent to learn about the abbey and its rich brewing history. Our beer was first brewed within the monastery walls by monks in 1295, and the monastery still retains much of the same architecture.
Would you consider yourself a beer tourist? If the answer is yes, leave us a comment below with details of your trip and how far you have travelled for great craft beer!