From the North to the South, the Regions are focusing with increasing conviction on tourism that is not only sustainable, but also responsible and respectful of places. The Veneto case study.
Analysts and international organisations agree that despite the variations and limitations adopted by some countries, 2022 will be a good year for tourism. And the Italian Regions are ready to seize the opportunities of the relaunch, also focusing on sustainability. A case study of a region that is particularly active on these issues is Veneto.
"We have started important work on our 9 UNESCO sites - comments the Councillor for Tourism of the Veneto Region, Federico Caner - the Dolomites, the Botanical Garden of Padua, Venice and its lagoon, the city of Verona, Vicenza and Palladio's villas, the pile-dwelling sites, the Prosecco Hills of Conegliano Valdobbiadene, the Venetian defence works between the 16th and 17th centuries and the most recent, the cycle of pictorial frescoes in Padua Urbs Picta, combined with the recognition of Monte Grappa as a UNESCO Biosphere. In both cases, the development of tourism is matched by maximum attention to the territory and the environment. A commitment that would be rewarded with the candidacy to host the International Exchange of UNESCO sites.
Some municipalities have joined the initiative promoted by the Directorate of Tourism of the Veneto Region, the European Charter of Sustainable Tourism, financed with European funds of the project 'Take it Slow', for which more than 370 thousand euros have been allocated to Veneto. The project aims to promote and encourage slow, sustainable and accessible tourism along the entire Adriatic coast. Others are thinking about GSTC certification, the Global Tourism Council, a body that certifies sustainable policies and practices".
"Cycle tourism also represents a real opportunity to regenerate what’s on offer. Together with the Provinces and the Municipalities we are working on the development of the bicycle network, for example the project Cycling in the Land of Venice is continuing. This is precisely why the Service Charter for the Bike product clubs has been drawn up. Forms of slow tourism have been encouraged with the launch of the Cammini Project: Veneto is a very attractive destination for walkers and can potentially attract 53% of Italian walkers. The Horse, Trek and MTB routes represent three strategic products of the Pre Alps route that touches 12 territories, from Monte Grappa to Valpolicella, Garda and the Small Dolomites and Asiago".
Numerous other projects have been initiated in recent years. In 2020, the region approved the Charter of Welcoming and Hospitality, which is aimed at businesses in the tourism chain, but also seeks to involve guests. “This tool summarises the fundamental values of quality tourism in a real decalogue, adapted to the different types of tourist accommodation. Veneto wants to be a destination: for everyone, reliable, authentic, competent, connected, beautiful, informed, safe, respectful and sustainable", continues Caner.
"Developed before the emergency, the Charter is now even more valuable in strengthening the culture of welcoming. The document starts from the awareness that 'We are the destination': we are the destination when we greet smilingly at the desk or ticket office in the language of the customer, when we offer to give directions to a tourist, when we proudly take care of welcoming squares and streets. We can make a difference in making our region's destinations a source of wealth, growth, economic and cultural enrichment for the local community".
Italy is in the spotlight at BIT 2022, which will be held at fieramilanocity from Sunday 10 to Tuesday 12 April.