ECTN celebrates 10 years of activities 2009 - 2019 !
ECTN was established as AISLB in Brussels on 20 May 2009. This year ECTN celebrates 10 years of continuous activities and growth, from the 6 founding members in 2009 to 29 members in 2019 and from 5 countries to 19 countries!
During its 10 years of existence, ECTN has participated in 5 EU co-funded projects (4 currently active, established by the ECTN Secretariat), organised 9 international conferences and awarded annual prizes for 'Destination of Sustainable Cultural Tourism' since 2014.
ECTN is a member of the Stakeholder Committee of the 'European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018' (EYCH2018), selected by the European Commission DG EAC in 2017. ECTN was an official supporter of the UN 'International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017', facilitated by UNWTO. ECTN is a signatory of the 'European Manifesto for Growth & Jobs' led by the European Travel Commission and a founding member of the 'European Heritage Alliance 3.3', led by Europa Nostra.
ECTN keynote address at the International Conference on Archaeology and Tourism, entitled:
'The Charter for Sustainable Cultural Tourism & the European Year of Cultural Heritage legacy'
ECTN Conference 2019 to be held in Granada, Spain
24-26 October 2019
in conjunction with the closing event of
CHRISTA project Interreg Europe
Call for Presenters now open!
Deadline for submission of Abstracts: 31 May 2019
ECTN Awards 2019 launched!
1. Intangible Cultural Heritage
2. Heritage Interpretation Facilities
3. Innovation and Digitisation in Cultural Tourism Development and Promotion
4. Transnational Thematic Tourism Products, including Cultural Routes
5. Culinary Heritage, Wine, Food and Gastronomy Tourism (in partnership with Iter Vitis for wine tourism and FOODBIZ Erasmus+ project led by University of Macerata)
6. Contributions by Cultural and Creative Industries (CCIs) to Cultural and Creative Tourism
7. Actions during the ‘European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018’, initiative on ‘Tourism and heritage’
ECTN Awards 'Destination of Sustainable Cultural Tourism' 2014 - 2019 !
Veneto Region joins ECTN
Veneto Region, Italy, has joined ECTN as a member, following successful cooperation in ECTN projects CHARTS INTERREG IVC (2012-2014), CHRISTA Interreg Europe (2016-2020) and Cult-CreaTE Interreg Europe (2018-2022).
ECTN participated in the 3rd UNWTO/UNESCO World Conference on Tourism and CultureThe theme ‘for the Benefit of All’ had two priorities:
1) creating more inclusive partnerships between tourism and culture stakeholders that contribute to SDG implementation; and
2) promoting tourism development that encourages cultural interaction and ensures the benefits are shared by all communities involved.
Androula Vassiliou confirmed as Honorary Member of ECTN
Former European Commissioner for Culture Mrs Androula Vassiliou, currently Vice-President of Europa Nostra was confirmed as Honorary Member of ECTN at the closing ceremony of the ECTN annual Conference, in Pafos, Cyprus, on 26 October 2018. Mrs Vassiliou had been proposed as ECTN Honorary Member during her term as EU Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, as a recognition of her contribution to cultural tourism in initiatives such the European Heritage Label and her video message at the 2013 ECTN Conference.
Winners of the ECTN Awards 2018 announced!
In partnership with Europa Nostra and the European Travel Commission, supported by NECSTouR
The ECTN 'Destination of Sustainable Cultural Tourism 2018' Awards were announced at a ceremony on 25 October in Pafos, Cyprus. The ECTN Awards for 2018 have been held in cooperation with Europa Nostra (EN) and the European Travel Commission (ETC), supported by NECSToUR, as a contribution to the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018 (EYCH2018), initiative on 'Tourism and heritage: responsible and sustainable tourism around cultural heritage'. In total 57 candidates from 15 countries had submitted applications, under 7 thematic categories. The selection has been made by a jury comprised by representatives of ECTN, EN, ETC and NECSToUR.
The winners are as follows, by theme category:
Religious & Pilgrimage
The Way of St Francis a new sustainable way to discover Italy,
by Sviluppumbria – Regional Economic Development Agency for Umbria, Italy
South Limburg, a spiritual Awakening
by Tourist Board South Limburg, Netherlands
Camino Lebaniego, the first solar powered “online” pilgrimage route
by Government of Cantabria, Spain
Colonies of Benevolence of Wortel and Merksplas
by Kempens Landschap is a Flemish non-profit organization that aims to protect valuable landscapes in the province of Antwerp, Belgium
A train for the Casilini Ecomuseum
by Ecomuseo Casilino ad Duas Lauros, Italy
Rota do Românico - An experience founded on History
by VALSOUSA - Associação de Municípios do Vale do Sousa, Portugal
Industrial & Military
Flanders Fields 2014-2018: developing a future-proof, transformative WW1 remembrance tourism
By Visit Flanders, Belgium
Industrial Herritage of Berguedà
by Berguedà Development Agency, Spain
Historic Villages and Towns
The revival of Kalopanayiotis village into a sustainable tourism destination
By Yiannakis Papadouris Foundation, Cyprus
Ostana: return and development
By Comune di Ostana, Italy
Kėdainiai – the unique multicultural XVIIth century town of Dukes Radvilos in the heart of Lithuania
By Kėdainiai District Municipality, Lithuania
Gaudi’s Crypt, the first UNESCO’s World Heritage Site in the World in obtaining the Biosphere Certification of Sustainable Tourism management
by Consorci de Turisme den Baix Llobregat, Spain
Recovery and revaluation of the cultural and natural heritage of the historic garden Parc Samà
by Cambrils Municipal Tourist Board, Spain
Routes in Marpissa, a three-day, experiential, cultural festival in the traditional settlement of Marpissa, Paros island
by Routes in Marpissa, Greece
Transnational Thematic Tourism Products
Sea, Nature, Sicily – Underwater and nautical itinenaries
Sicily, Tuscany, Sardinia, Balearic Islands, Provence, Andalusia
by the Phoenician’s Route – Cultural Route of the Council of Europe
Creation of a Cultural Dipole in a cross border area
Creation of two Museums/ cultural poles, in Serres (Greece) and in Petrich (Bulgaria), cooperation on tourism and culture
by Municipality of Serres, Greece
Contributions by Cultural and Creative Industries
Discover Dingli Cliffs – Innovative cultural and eco-tourism activities in rural Dingli, Malta
by La Pinta Ltd., The Cliffs Interpretation Centre, Malta
Imaginarius Creation Centre – Art and Public Space (ICC)
by Municipality of Santa Maria da Feira, Portugal
Istra Inspirit – reviving cultural and historic heritage of Istria through cultural tourism
by Istria Tourism Development Agency, Croatia
Special Prize of the Jury
Raudondvaris Manor stables arrangement and adaption for arts incubator activities
by Public institution “Raudondvaris Manor”, Lithuania
re to edit.
Video Clip Competition on Cultural Tourism Development and Promotion,
as a contribution to European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018!
ECTN will launch a competition with prizes for a Video Clip on the theme of Cultural Tourism development and promotion in Europe. This competition is in the frame of EYCH 2018, European Initiative on 'Tourism and heritage: responsible and sustainable tourism around cultural heritage'.
Further details to follow soon!
ECTN participated in the 3rd UNWTO Global Conference on Wine Tourism:
Wine Tourism as a Tool for Rural Development
ECTN participated in the 2nd UNWTO World Conference on Smart Destinations 2018
NECSTouR, the Network of European Regions for a Sustainable and Competitive Tourism, supports the ECTN Awards for Destination of Sustainable Cultural Tourism 2018, as a contribution to the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018, in partnership with Europa Nostra and the European Travel Commission
ECTN welcomes the European Capital of Smart Tourism initiative!
In line with a preparatory action proposed by the European Parliament, the European Commission is launching a competition to award the title of European Capital of Smart Tourism. This brand new initiative rewards European cities and gives them the opportunity to share their exemplary practices as smart tourism destinations. Deadline for applications is 30 June 2018.
The initiative will showcase accomplishments by tourism destinations across the EU in the following areas:
ECTN welcomes and supports this excellent initiative, particularly since the areas of Sustainability, Cultural Heritage & Creativity are directly related to ECTN's role in promoting Sustainable Cultural Tourism in Europe, as well as 'Accessibility to Heritage' being a good practice already included in the ECTN Charter for Sustainable Cultural Tourism.
ECTN urges all its eligible members to apply.
ECTN in new Interreg Europe projects!
ECTN is a partner in a new Interreg Europe project approved by the monitoring committee, one of 54 projects approved out of 234 applications received in the third call for project proposals.
Cult-CreteTE (Cultural and Creative Industries contribution to Cultural and Creative Tourism in Europe) aims to redeploy Cultural and Creative Industries (CCIs) for the development and promotion of Cultural and Creative Tourism (CCT) strategies, with sustainability, innovations, capitalisation, policy learning, policy implementation and capacity building. Cult-CreteTE is led by Vidzeme Tourism Association in Latvia, with partners Veneto IT, Nicosia CY, Cork IE, Dundee UK, Naoussa EL, Pecs HU, Kujawsko-Pomorskie PL.
ECTN has also supported another winning application, DESTI-SMART (Delivering Efficient Sustainable Tourism with low-carbon transport Innovations: Sustainable Mobility, Accessibility and Responsible Travel), led by Metropolitan Development Agency of Thessaloniki, Greece, with partners Bremerhaven DE, Sardenia IT, Mallorca ES, Funchal PT, Hastings UK, Pafos CY, Lake Balaton HU, Greenways LV and Bournemouth University UK as an advisory partner. DESTI-SMART aims to improve the transport and tourism policies of EU destinations, by integrating strategies for sustainable mobility, accessibility and
responsible travel with efficient & sustainable tourism development, for transition to a low-carbon economy, through efficiency, resilience, multimodality, novel low-carbon transport systems, cycling & walking, with implementation innovations, policy learning and capacity building.
Both of the above topics, CCIs for CCT and SMART Destinations, are included in the ECTN 'Charter for Sustainable Cultural Tourism', which is a contribution of ECTN to the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018.
ECTN participates in the official opening of the 2018 EU-China Tourism Year at the Doge's Palace, Venice
ECTN had been invited by the European Commission DG GROW to to the official opening of the 2018 EU-China Tourism Year (ECTY) on Friday 19 January 2018 in Venice, at the Doge's Palace and the ECTN Secretary-General participated. The ECTY was announced jointly in July 2016 by the President of the European Commission and the Chinese Prime Minister. It aims at increasing the investment opportunities in China for European operators and boosting European growth and jobs by promoting Chinese tourism to the EU. ECTY was launched by Commissioner Bieńkowska and the Chairman of China National Tourism Administration.
ECTN is ready to contribute to ECTY 2018, in terms of responsible and sustainable cultural tourism which is highly relevant to both EU and China tourism sectors. ECTN is also facilitating synergies between ECTY 2018 and EYCH 2018, as the only member of the EYCH 2018 Stakeholders Committee with a tourism mandate.
A VERY HAPPY AND CREATIVE 2018 - EUROPEAN YEAR OF CULTURAL HERITAGE !
ECTN participates in the European Tourism Day 2017 in Brussels
ECTN participated in the 2017 edition of the European Tourism Day on 28 November in Brussels, organised by the European Commission. This year the conference addressed the topic of "The future of EU tourism" and will look into issues such as access to finance under the next EU Multi-Annual Financial Framework, the tourism value chain and its implications on consumers, businesses and local communities as well as the future of tourism governance at EU, national and regional level. The event gathered up to 400 participants, including Commissioners, other representatives of the European Commission and high-level representatives of public authorities at EU, national and regional level. We’ll also line up representatives of prominent European sector associations, the tourism and travel industry as well as other relevant stakeholders.
Granada, Spain and Västra Götaland, Sweden, join ECTN Board
Representatives from Granada County Council (Diputación Provincial de Granada) - Spain, and from Västra Götaland Region (Västra Götalands Regionen) - Sweden, have been elected to join the Board of ECTN.
They join the existing Board members, representatives from Vidzeme Tourism Association - Latvia (President), Pafos Regional Board of Tourism - Cyprus (Vice-President), Sibiu County Tourism Association - Romania, CIM Ave - Portugal, and Dubrovnik City Development Agency DURA - Croatia.
10th Cultural Tourism Conference held in Sibiu, Romania, 20-21 September 2017
The 2017 ECTN Annual Conference has been organized in the framework of:
The United Nations 70th General Assembly has designated 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development (IY2017), which is a unique opportunity to raise awareness on the contribution of sustainable tourism to development among public and private sector decision-makers and the public, while mobilizing all stakeholders to work together in making tourism a catalyst for positive change. IY2017 aims to support a change in policies, business practices and consumer behaviour towards a more sustainable tourism sector, facilitated by UNWTO. European Cultural Tourism Network joined the celebrations of the International Year by promoting tourism`s role in the key area of ‘Cultural Values, Diversity and Heritage’, one of the five key areas of the IY2017.
ECTN organizes an international conference since 2005 on a theme related to cultural tourism in a different country every year. For the past 4 years, the annual conference is organized in the frame of ‘European Heritage Days’ and ‘European Cooperation Day’. Our 2017 Conference theme was dovetailed with the UN IY2017 and took place within IY2017 activities.
The 10th international conference ‘Cultural Values, Diversity and Heritage: Pillars of Sustainable Tourism for Development’ discussed the latest trends in the field of cultural values, diversity and heritage towards sustainable tourism for development, including innovation, creativity, R&D and sustainable tourism product development. The conference explored major challenges, risks and opportunities for sustainable and responsible tourism development related to cultural values, diversity and heritage, as well as suggest practical steps for the development and marketing of cultural tourism products and services. ECTN as a signatory of the ‘European Tourism Manifesto for Growth & Jobs' has included this Conference in the Manifesto Working Programme 2017.
The conference was organised in close cooperation with Sibiu County Tourism Association and in conjunction with the Interreg Europe project CHRISTA – Culture and Heritage for Responsible, Innovative and Sustainable Tourism Actions (2016 – 2020).
Message by the UNWTO Secretary-General Message by the Committee of the Regions
ECTN at the Working Group of Member States' experts on Sustainable Cultural Tourism, in Bruges
ECTN presented its aims, activities and the Charter for Sustainable Cultural Tourism to the Open Method of Coordination (OMC) Working Group of Member States' experts Priority Area C "Cultural and Creative Sectors: Creative Economy and Innovation" Topic C3: Sustainable Cultural Tourism, in Bruges, Belgium, 12 September 2017
European Parliament Conference “A European strategy to enhance the competitiveness of the tourism industry, a key driver for job creation”, in Brussels on 27 September, International Day of Tourism.
The event was opened by European Parliament President Tajani, with the participation of Vice-President Katainen, the responsible Commissioners, the Chairs of the TRAN, IMCO and CULT parliamentary committees, leading MEPs, as well as the Presidents of the Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions, senior representatives from the European Investment Bank and other leading stakeholders.
Discover the detailed programme of the event here:
Aimed at citizens, policy makers, the investor community, market participants of the tourist sector and stakeholders’ representatives, the conference will look at the Tourist sector, focussing discussion on three areas:
· Supporting investments, improving the business environment and upgrading skills;
· Tourism innovation and digital economy;
· Promoting Europe as the number one tourist destination.
ECTN is pleased to welcome new members as well as previous members re-joining, in order to benefit from the activities and strong membership !
ECTN is a member of:
ECTN is a signatory of:
MEPs, regions, cities and the tourism industry urge the European Commission to come forward with a European Tourism Strategy. 40 MEPs, more than 70 Members of the European Committee of the Regions and representatives of Europe's tourism industry call for a comprehensive strategy supporting the tourism sector in an Open Letter addressed to the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker. READ MORE
EYCH 2018 Stakeholder Committee 1st Report published !
TENDER for subcontracting external expertise regarding policies on INTERPRETATION FACILITIES for SUSTAINABLE and RESPONSIBLE TOURISM in the scope of Interreg Europe programme project CHRISTA. TENDER is CLOSED!
To receive Tender Specification and Proposal Form, potential Applicants should send a request to email: coordinator(at)culturaltourism-net.eu.
30 May 2017
Civil society calls on EU Leaders to recognise fundamental role of Cultural Heritage for the future of Europe
3 February 2017
Ahead of the informal summit of European leaders on the future of the EU in Valletta on 03.02.2017, 40 European heritage networks that form the European Heritage Alliance 3.3 are urging EU leaders to recognise the fundamental role of Europe’s shared cultural heritage for bringing people in Europe together. READ MORE
TENDER for subcontracting external expertise regarding policies on INDUSTRIAL HERITAGE for SUSTAINABLE and RESPONSIBLE TOURISM in the scope of Interreg Europe programme project CHRISTA. TENDER is CLOSED!
To receive Tender Specification and Proposal Form, potential Applicants should send a request to email: coordinator(at)culturaltourism-net.eu.
29 December 2016
37 European and international heritage networks, that are part of the European Heritage Alliance 3.3, including ECTN, have sent a joint letter calling on 28 EU Heads of State or Government to fully support the European Year of Cultural Heritage in 2018, and especially to allocate adequate financial resources to the implementation of the Year.
Members of the Alliance also urge the EU Heads of State or Government to seize the historic opportunity of the event marking the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome on 25 March 2017 to publicly recognise that the entire European project has a wider cultural meaning and significance derived from our shared cultural heritage, both tangible and intangible. Read the full text of the letter with the list of signatories HERE.
ECTN organised a special event in Brussels on 30 November 2016, to launch the 2nd edition of the 'Charter for Sustainable Cultural Tourism' and in preparation for the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018. READ MORE
ECTN Secretary-General Manos Vougioukas made an intervention at the European Tourism Day event in Brussels on 29th November 2016.
ECTN President addressed Cultural Routes Forum in Vilnius
25 October 2016
President of European Cultural Tourism Network (ECTN), Mr Raitis Sijats, addressed the Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe Forum, which took place at the Radisson Blu Hotel Lietuva from 26 – 27 October 2016 in Vilnius, Lithuania. READ MORE
CHRISTA project has published the 1st edition of the newsletter CHRISTA VOICE
25 October 2016
In the 1st edition of CHRISTA newsletter you can find more information about the project, partnership, how CHRISTA project was created, events organised between May and September 2016, as well as plans for the next 6 months. CHRISTA VOICE is available at the CHRISTA Library.
European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018 announced with particular reference to sustainable cultural tourism
2 September 2016
ECTN greatly welcomes the EYCH 2018 and will strive to incorporate its activities into the EYCH programme. READ MORE
Counts for Europe
compelling evidence of the value of cultural heritage and its impact on Europe’s economy, culture, society and the environment
ECTN signs the European Tourism Manifesto for Growth & Jobs. READ MORE
16 June 2016
TENDER for subcontracting external expertise regarding policies on INTANGIBLE HERITAGE for SUSTAINABLE and RESPONSIBLE TOURISM. Tender Specification. Form.
14 June 2016
EU project to protect and preserve European natural and cultural heritage assets and to deploy them for the innovative, sustainable and responsible tourism strategies
31 May 2016
CHRISTA project started in April 2016, involving 10 partners from 10 EU Member States regional and local authorities, as well as tourism authorities in 9 EU regions. READ MORE
- ECTN welcomes new member to the network from Poland - Podkarpackie Regional Tourism Board, 18.05.2016
- European Commission announces 2018 as ‘European Year of Cultural Heritage’ proposal, 20.04.2016
- ECTN welcomes new member to the network from Georgia - Caucasus International University, 07.07.2016
- ECTN Welcomes new member to the network from Croatia - City of Jastrebarsko, 04.04.2016
- ECTN welcomes new member to the network from Sweden - University of Gothenburg, Department of Conservation, 24.02.2016
- European Tourism Indicator System ETIS joint conference 2016 on Managing and Promoting Sustainable and Accessible Tourism Destinations
- ECTN welcomes three new destination members to the network from Croatia, Montenegro, Albania, Serbia
- Former EU Commissioner for Culture becomes the first Honorary Member of ECTN
- Cultural Tourism Conference 2015 on Industrial Heritage held in Riga
- Awards for 'Destination of Sustainable Cultural Tourism 2015' go to Poland, Cyprus and Latvia
- New Member of the Board elected at General Assembly
- ECTN welcomes seven new members to the network from Poland, Romania, UK, Spain, Croatia, Portugal and Greece in 2015
- ECTN signed 'Memorandum of Understanding' with 'Alpine Pearls'
- ECTN supports ‘European Industrial and Technical Heritage Year 2015’
- CoR events Flash May / June / July 2015
- Cultural Tourism serves about half of cruise passengers
- New project ideas were presented at the INTERREG EUROPE launch event 'Europe - let`s Cooperate!'