The GNTO is supporting Greece’s lesser-known Evros with Lavender Agritourism Project promo
Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO) President Angela Gerekou visited the lesser-known Evros prefecture and its key destinations including Alexandroupoli, Soufli, and Didymoteicho to identify special interest attractions that can be used to enhance the tourist experience.
Gerekou’s two-day visit to the region kicked off with the inauguration of the 1.5 hectare “Vast Purple of Evros” agritourism project showcasing the cultivation of lavender which the region is known for. The project is running in the village of Valtos, in Orestiada and is the first agritourism initiative supported by the GNTO.
“This is where Greece is second in the world in lavender production. This is an innovative action with the first implementation in Greece in the Evros prefecture in the framework of the [agriculture ministry’s] agritourism programs, which is under the auspices of the GNTO,” said Gerekou.
The GNTO has promoted the “Vast Purple of Evros” internationally through its 17 offices located across the globe.
The GNTO’s president then went on to visit villages and towns in the area and was given a tour of local museums and sites including the Historical and Folklore Museum of Orestiada,
She also citied the Thrace University forestry department where she was informed of the area’s potential to support alternative forms of tourism.
In Soufli, noted for its silk mastery, where she met with the town’s mayor Panagiotis Kalakikos and together they raised the “Best Tourism Village” flag awarded to Soufli by the e World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).
The move comes under the concept of Creative Tourism, Gerekou tabled last year which aims to showcase local creative through products and handicrafts and give visitors the opportunity to get involved with the process.
It should be reminded that business owners in Greece investing in sustainable agritourism projects will be able to apply for funding, starting on July 5 here to September 30. A total of 49 million euros worth of funding was announced by the agriculture ministry earlier this month.
The Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF) funds will be channeled into projects that connect agricultural activity and farming with tourism creating a new tourism product.
The aim of the program is to include farmers in the value chain and enhance the competitiveness and recognizability of local products through their promotion at tourist destinations and inclusion in experiential agritourism activities.