The initiative is part of the “Travel.Enjoy.Respect” campaign, taking place within the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017. A one-month trip across the world visiting sustainable tourism initiatives is the prize, which will be awarded to the winner of the competition.
Competition entrants are invited to share their travel experiences and explain why they should be selected to represent the global “responsible traveler”.
The journey will start from the UNWTO headquarters in Madrid and will end in Geneva, Switzerland during the closing ceremony of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017. Destinations including Colombia, Germany, Mexico, the United Arab Emirate of Ras al-Khaimah and the Léman region in Switzerland have offered to host the winner and help him/her discover responsible and sustainable tourism practices.
The World Tourism Day 2017 official celebration will be held in Doha, Qatar, under the theme “Sustainable Tourism – a Tool for Development”.
Taleb Rifai: “Building a More Sustainable Tourism Sector”
“Every action counts and travelers have a strong role to play in building a more sustainable tourism sector,” said Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of UNWTO, referring to the competition. “We want to inspire all travelers to be the change they want to see in the world,” he added.
In his official message on the occasion of World Tourism Day 2017, Rifai urged travelers to respect culture and sustainability:
“Last year 1.235 million travellers crossed international borders in one single year. By 2030, this 1.2 billion will become 1.8 billion. The question, as we celebrate World Tourism Day 2017, is how we can enable this powerful global transformative force, these 1.8 billion opportunities, to contribute to make this world a better place and to advance sustainable development in all its five pillars:
– Economic: Yielding inclusive growth
– Social: Bringing decent jobs and empowering communities
– Environmental: Preserving and enriching the environment and addressing climate change
– Cultural: Celebrating and preserving diversity, identity, and tangible and intangible culture
– Peace: As an essential prerequisite for development and progress.
This World Tourism Day, whenever you travel, wherever you travel, remember to:
RESPECT YOUR HOST.”