Greece hosts the XI Charter Network Meeting! “Exploring a Sustainable (tourism) Response”
Every two years, the EUROPARC network of Sustainable Destinations applying the European Charter for Sustainable Tourism in Protected Areas methodology comes together to exchange experience and best practice. With visitor pressure increasing in many European Protected Areas, we need to look at tourism with a different mindset. The XI Charter Network Meeting takes place in Greece between the 9-11th April, with a special post-conference excursion until the 14th April!
The social and cultural impacts of tourism: exploring a sustainable response!
Sustainable Tourism can deliver positive impacts for society. It has the potential to promote social development through employment creation, economic activities and can be a force for peace and understanding. It can also strengthen communities, as facilities and infrastructure developed for tourism can benefit locals as a reaffirmation of culture, tradition and values.
However, these same socio-cultural impacts do change local people ’s everyday experiences, the traditional way of life and intellectual and artistic products. There are concerns over culture commodification, lack of authenticity of traditions, dilution of culture and even standardisation of tourism offers. All this too affects changes in the landscape and nature of the destination.
The European Charter for Sustainable Tourism in Protected Areas, through it partnership approach, seeks to deliver social, economic and environmental benefits to an area, in a way that does not denigrate the existing culture, yet allow too for growth and development. It is a challenge to balance these competing demands.
– Sofia Pachini, Policy Officer, Nature Protection Unit, DG Environment, European Commission – “NATURA 2000: opportunities for sustainable tourism embracing natural and cultural heritage in nature protected areas”
– Emanuele Raso, Municipality of Monterosso, 5 Terre National Park, Italy – “Managing culture and social impacts: the 5 Terre Experience”
– Prof. Dimitris Goussios, University of Thessaly, Laboratory of Rural Space
– Casa de Ecoturismo Quei Victorino – “Ecotourism as a driving force for rural areas: Experiences of a young entrepreneur”
– Carol Ritchie, Executive Director, EUROPARC Federation
In the application form, you will be asked to choose one workshop. The workshop sessions will run on the 9th April afternoon (between 15:00 and 18:00) and on the 10th April morning (between 9:00 and 11:30). A further description of each workshop is available in the Agenda.
Our host in Tzoumerka organised 6 wonderful field trips. On the 11th, we will spend the day outdoors, each participant should choose the field trip he would like to join.
Open activities (where we need you!): marketplace and open mic session
There will be plenty of opportunities to network and share experience, learn from each other and get new ideas to take back to your own areas. For the Marketplace, you are invited to bring information, promotional material, but also the best delicacies from your country or region… Yours + mine = our Food, Enjoy and share experience ! you can either bring the material with you, or post it in advance to the Park.
There will also be an “open mic “ session. Where you can bring a 5 minute presentation of your project, ideas for projects, looking for partners or just general sustainable tourism question you want advise or input from the audience… We give you the Microphone… the floor is your (for 5 minutes).
Location and Accommodation
The meeting will bring together park and partners from across Europe to the wonderful Tzoumerka, AcheloosValley, Agrafa and Meteora National Park, in Greece. One of our newer sustainable destinations awarded with the Charter.
The meeting will take place in the Pramanta Council Hall, Pramanta town, municipality of North Tzoumerka, Region of Epirus. The National Park will kindly provide transfers on the 8th April from:
- Thessaloniki Airport
- Athens Airport
- For those arriving by ferry from Italy, a transfer will be arranged from Igoumenitsa Port
Transfers will also be ensured for the return on 12th am (and on 14th am for those joining the post conference excursion).
Our host have secured excellent value in the following hotels, so please book direct with the hotel of your choice.
All hotels are within 20 min drive and shuttle buses will bring you to the conference venue each day. Make sure you book your trip and accommodation soon, we will need to know your travel details by the end of February to organise the transfers.
We are open now for PRE-REGISTRATION. Please register NOW to secure your place.
- The participation fee for EUROPARC members is only 70€, and 90€ for non – members.
A second registration form will be sent for you to select your workshop and field trip so don’t worry about that for now. But do register now to ensure your secure this great bargain! And so you can make your advance travel plans.
Special 2-day Post Conference tour!
This edition, Tzoumerka National Park is offering a special 2-day post-conference between the 12-14th April for those who would like to have the chance to visit Meteora! This will be an additional cost but it highly recommended!