This 'Underground Wine City' Is Home to 1.5 Million Bottles
Take a drive through the largest wine cellar in the world.
Buried 270 feet below the ground in Moldova, there is a 34-mile labyrinth of tunnels. Based on those numbers alone, Milestii Mici doesn’t seem like the most welcoming of places. However it’s what lines the halls of the tunnels that make the place a veritable destination.
In 2005, the Guinness Book of World Records awarded Milestii Mici the title of Largest Wine Cellar in the world, by number of bottles. Its shelves are estimated to store over 1.5 million bottles of “holy drink” (their words).
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The “underground wine city” was founded in 1968 and carved out of limestone. Although the winery does produce its own wines (harvested between 1986 and 1991), it imports and stores fine and vintage wines from around the world. The oldest of the collection date back to the 1960s.
The space was specifically built to age red wines, thus they comprise the majority of the collection (70 percent). However there are also white and dessert wines on the shelves.
Visitors can take a tour of the expansive cellar and even sample some of the collection in one of their tasting halls. Those who enjoy the finer things in life should be sure to stop by the “Golden Collection,” where the wine cellar’s most precious bottles are stored.
Each “street” of the city is named after a different type of wine and is accessible by foot, bicycle, or car, in accordance with traffic rules. Travelers can book a guided tour and tasting in one of the cellar’s cars for about $90.