Due to the increasing concern about nature and environment in the society, people are more likely to spend their holiday in rural destinations. This context provides rural mountain regions a great occasion to better strengthen their economic income by further developing this potential market.
However, off from top destinations, rural tourist areas are not valued enough, their positioning is too low, there is a lack of cooperation between regional actors and the communication is undeveloped.
In order to boost tourism in mountain rural areas, Switzerland Tourism, a national marketing and sales organisation for Switzerland, launched in 2009 the programme “Enjoy Berghilfe”, in collaboration with ASM (l’Aide Suisse aux Montagnards), an organisation financed by donations to improve the basic necessities and living conditions in mountain regions.
The programme pursued two main goals:
– enhancing the assets of each mountain rural destination
– helping local stakeholders to better target and optimise their offer
The programme was first implemented from 2009 to the summer of 2012. It has been a real success: the collaboration with ASM has been very positive and enabled local stakeholders to better work together. For instance, to present the wide range of possible activities, tourism operators from the Emmental and the Entlebuchregions, created a leaflet focusing on interesting activities to do when the weather is not suitable for outdoor activities. Or in Mooslap, a marketplace offers local products thanks to the support of the local population. Switzerland Tourism and ASM therefore decided to repeat the experience, and launched in 2012 the second section of the programme, which will last until August 2015. Currently, 4 touristic destinations are part of the project: Bergell, Obergoms, the natural park of Thal and the Creux du Van.
This is a summary of a Good practice published by the ‘montagna’ revue.
Click here to access to the Switzerland Tourism website
See the press release here
Download the official flyer of the project17 September 2014