WWF Adria is responsible for the successful and effective implementation of project activities in two of the pilot marine protected areas, as well as to support the implementation of activities on the wider project level. The final goal is defining Mediterranean Ecotourism standards, and a related monitoring tool for the sustainability of Ecotourism in protected areas.
Eight international eco-tourism experts spent 5 days in October getting to know the Kornati National Park in a completely new way. Instead of the tourism activities people usually do, they saw first hand the nature, culture and traditions of this marine protected area. Conversations with local community representatives, participating in bee-keeping and olive-harvesting, sage picking and processing are just some of the activities that are part of the new tourist package "Kornati Sailing Adventure", the experts came to try and evaluate.
Issa Torres, a Spanish eco-tourism consultant who has been working for several national parks in Panama for several years to align their development with the wishes of local communities, was particularly fond of the part that included socializing with Kurnatars, owners of land in the national park. Getting to know the Skračić brothers in Kravljačica bay on the island of Kornati, who produce sage products, was a special experience for her. "It was nice to see how a small family engaged in the sage production process, and in addition to helping pick sage, we had a nice evening enjoying the homemade food they prepared for us," comments Issa, adding however that there is room for improvement in the package. "In order to be prepared we need to know clearly in advance what we will be doing and what is expected of us during the trip", concludes Torres.
A group of foreign eco-tourism experts spent six days in Croatia, first visiting Split, and then their main destination - the Lastovo Islands Nature Park. The purpose of their visit was to try out the "Lastovo - Positive Wild" package, the first park eco-tourism offer created by park staff in co-operation with the local population and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).
"The goal of developing tourism is not only profit, but also supporting the well-being of the local community, the preservation of identity, culture and tradition, and the protection of natural resources. The eco-tourism offer must be a departure from mass tourism, "explains Mosor Prvan of WWF Adria, the project manager of DestiMED, a project that supported the development of this tourism offer. Prvan participated in the design of the package and accompanied the group of foreign experts. Bruno Dukovic from the Lastovo Island Nature Park developed the tourism offer. The second group of experts will arrive in Lastovo in the spring, and they will be welcomed by a "refreshed" tour: "Lastovo - Positive Wild".