The Greek Travel Pages (GTP) has provided a podium for Greece’s key tourism figures to share their vision for the day after the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The pandemic gave Athens a new keyword – safety – and we shouldn’t expect those concerns to simply fade away. We need to choose our direction carefully and with a new sense of responsibility, strengthening the role of accessibility and sustainability in our destination strategy. Our biggest threat would be our own failure to act, not only positioning Athens in those global conversations, but actually stopping the climate crisis before it becomes irreversible.
The City of Athens has its own DMO, the Athens Development and Destination Management Agency, and an official visitors’ guide online at thisisathens.org. Together we are working to show visitors who we really are as Athenians while promoting the city as an international destination outside, throughout the year.
Most importantly, we are focused on quality of life for our residents in every one of our neighborhoods. We believe this is what will inspire sustainable tourism.
Economic development starts in our neighbourhoods, so the municipality is making significant investments in our infrastructure across the city. We have begun repaving nearly half of all roads in the city, and soon we will start rebuilding sidewalks to make them more accessible. Maintenance of public squares, parks, and fountains has become one of our favorite new routines.
The Athens Partnership is helping us to repair and establish new parks throughout the city, for example Fix Park in Patissia and our first three pocket parks in Kolonos, Kypseli, and Pagrati. We have begun restoration projects using nature-based solutions in the National Gardens, on Mount Lycabettus and Strefi Hill, and soon we will start projects at Filopappou Hill and Akademia Platonos.
We want to be sure that every part of Athens is a great place to visit, but above all, we want to be sure that Athens is a great place to live.”
* This Op-Ed originally appeared in the Greek Travel Pages (GTP) annual printed edition for 2021. Press here for more information.