UN Tourism Receives 260 Applications For Best Tourism Villages

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UN Tourism says it received 260 applications from 60 countries and across 5 regions for the fourth edition of the Best Tourism Villages competition. According to UN Tourism, “this year’s initiative will again inspire communities worldwide to harness the power of tourism as a driver of rural development and wellbeing.”

UN Tourism says Member States “were invited to submit up to eight candidate villages through their National Tourism Administrations (NTAs)” and noted that the villages will be assessed by an external independent Advisory Board in nine areas of evaluation including: Cultural and Natural Resources, Promotion and Conservation of Cultural Resources, Economic Sustainability, Social Sustainability and Environmental Sustainability. Other criteria include Tourism Development and Value Chain Integration, Governance and Prioritization of Tourism, Infrastructure and Connectivity, and Health, Safety, and Security.

The villages recognized as the Best Tourism Villages as well as those selected to participate in the Upgrade Programme will be announced in the fourth quarter of the year, according to the world body.

UN Tourism said “Since launching the call for applications in January, the Tourism for Rural Development Programme by UN Tourism has hosted a series of online sessions with the Member States, offering insights into the application process. These sessions in Arabic, English, French and Spanish, drew in 117 participants, highlighting the widespread interest and commitment of UN Tourism Member States to advancing tourism for rural development.”

It further stated that “The BTV Network, currently boasting a global consortium with 186 members, will continue to grow. The Network includes 129 villages recognized as Best Tourism Villages and 57 actively participating in the Upgrade Programme representing 55 countries. This collaborative network is a unique global grouping of local communities and serves as a platform for sharing experiences, growing knowledge, and fostering partnerships to drive rural development through tourism”

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