Why & How
DestiMED believes that ecotourism can be transformed into a genuine alternative for the current tourism challenges facing the Mediterranean while directly supporting conservation of the region's incredible biodiversity. How? The project was established to provide protected areas and their private sector partners with the tools they need to create transformative travel experiences that generate positive outcomes for local communities, while minimizing the impact of tourism on local, natural and cultural resources.
With this vision in mind, DestiMED project brings together a network of seven project partners and 13 protected areas in six Mediterranean countries to collectively develop, manage, and protect ecotourism at local and regional scale.
Participating protected areas in Albania, Croatia, France, Greece, Italy, and Spain have gathered together local actors from private and public sector to collaboratively design new ecotourism packages, which they are testing according to new quality and sustainability standards and monitoring methods that are being piloted during DestiMED. These methods include an innovative approach to measuring and reducing the environmental impact of tourism on the natural resources that sustain protected area communities. This new tool is based on the established Ecological Footprint framework, and is being developed during DestiMED project in collaboration with globally-recognized research organization Global Footprint Network.
The packages will ultimately be part of MEET (Mediterranean Experience of Ecotourism), a non-profit association and Destination Management Organization (DMO) established with the intent of fostering a regional network that will coordinate, enhance and market Mediterranean ecotourism experiences to international markets.