Pathways of accessible heritage tourism

Acronym

Access2Heritage
Project Number – MIS 5018890
Priority axis 2 - A Sustainable and Climate adaptable Cross-Border area
Investment priorities 6c - Conserving, protecting, promoting and developing natural and cultural heritage
Intervention fields 091. Development and promotion of the tourism potential of natural areas
Call 2nd Call for proposals under priority axes 2 & 4
Lead Beneficiary Management Body of Rodopi Mountain-Range National Park
Beneficiaries Ecoworld Rhodopes Association
Local Economic Development Agency -Razlog
Municipality of Volvi
National Confederation of Disabled People of Greece
Regional Development Fund Of Central Macedonia
Regional Youth Parliament Association - Kardzhali, Bulgaria
Technological Educational Institute of Central Macedonia
Union of Disabled People in Bulgaria
Start Date Dec 15, 2017
End Date Dec 14, 2019
Budget 1.295.840,00 €
ERDF Contribution 1.101.464,00 €
National Contribution 194.376,00 €
The main goal of the project is to support the sustainable development of heritage tourism  in the CB area and establish the region as an international destination for senior and accessible tourism, including persons with disabilities and with chronic diseases, elderly and their families.

The project aims to:
• exchange and import know-how and good practices related to the improvement of the accessibility of cultural and natural heritage structures (people-to-people activities)
• improve for all the accessibility and visitability of selected cultural and natural heritage assets in the CB area (construction works)
• enhance the environmental performance of the supported structures towards better energy consumption, waste management andconservation, etc. (greening of supported sites)
• improve the capacity of authorities responsible for the management of cultural and natural heritage assets, and of professionals from tourist sector (such as guides, travel agents, event organizers,  transportation services, etc.) to meet the needs of senior and accessible tourism (capacity building activities)
• raise awareness of the local stakeholders, especially of young people, in relation to the potential of heritage tourism, the importance of endorsing strategies for sustainable development and inclusive design, etc. (awareness activities)
• collect data related to the accessibility and friendliness to disabled and elderly visitors of key cultural and natural assets of the CB area (field studies)
• improve the visibility of cultural and natural heritage assets that are accessible and friendly to all, through electronic and physical media, campaigns, etc. and by producing an informative guide for all visitors, with useful information for the elderly and the disabled persons (branding & promotion)
• conduct a joint strategic planning study towards the CB area branding as an international tourist destination for elderly and disabled, of high quality at low to medium cost (policies & plans)
• measure satisfaction and behavior of elderly and disabled visitors in supported structures, and in the CB area at large (tourist behavior & satisfaction surveys).

The project will build on the relevant experience of the partners, including:
• The Interreg project ACCESSIBLE CITIES (www.prosvasimes-poleis.eu) in which NCDP studied the accessibility of two municipalities in Greece and Cyprus and produced multiple information sources and tools for visitors with disabilities and their families
• The Interreg project A4ALL (www.a4all.gr) in which NCDP and UDPB studied the legal framework of the two countries in relation to accessibility for disabled persons reviewed the accessibility of the Haskovo Municipality and of the Municipality of Alexandroupoli, and organized seminars and workshops to inform and train on accessibility issues, methods and tools the staff of over 10 Municipalities across the CB area.

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