ATHENS – Already on a path to break tourist records in 2022 during the waning COVID-19 pandemic, and lure visitors year-round, Greece will showcase its famous culture and try to spread arrivals around to prevent sites being overrun.
Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias said during 11th Cultural Routes Annual Advisory Forum organized by the Council of Europe on Crete that the aim is to get people to less-visited by equally attractive areas around the country.
Thursday on Crete.
He said the ministry was already exploring ways to establish Greece into a leading cultural and sustainable destination through the creation of cultural routes which support green development, reported GTP Headlines.
He said that the Greek National Tourism Organization’s (GNTO) upcoming campaign will feature a more sustainable tourism model which is environmentally-friendly and respects culture and history, the site added.
He pointed to the town of Chania on Crete and the island as a whole which offer visitors insight into history and culture all year round although it’s already among the most popular spots.
“This is what we want to support and strengthen, which is why 2023 will be the year of sustainable tourism,” he said, Greece hoping that people will keep coming as international air travel has largely returned.
Culture Minister Lina Mendoni said there’s need for cultural routes that she said “require collaborations at a scientific and interdisciplinary level, but also the active participation of local bodies and sectors of the economy, laying the foundations of a different kind of cultural entrepreneurship closely linked to the cultural stock”.
Of the 48 Council of Europe routes, Greece participates in 16, with only two being Greek initiatives: The Routes of the Olive Tree and The Historic Cafés Route, indicating the need for more.
According to a Future Market Insights (FMI) report, the global cultural travel market is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.54 percent from 2022 to 2032, reaching $559.3 million by 2032.