The Conference Via Dinarica - a platform for sustainable tourism development and local economic growth in Bosnia and Herzegovina was held on the occasion of the celebration of the International Mountain Day in Sarajevo on 11 December 2017. Improvements of the tourist offer throughout the country were presented and attention was drawn to the importance of sustainable tourism development for a better life of all people in BiH, especially residents of country’s rural and remote locations.
Via Dinarica is an initiative of USAID and UNDP in Bosnia and Herzegovina with a total value of US $ 1.6 million and is implemented in partnership with: Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ministry of Environment and Tourism of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Ministry of Trade and Tourism of Republika Srpska. The goal of the Via Dinarica project is to contribute to the reduction of economic, social and regional disparities in Bosnia and Herzegovina through the affirmation of Via Dinarica as the unique regional tourist destination of the Dinaric Arc countries.
Mirko Šarović, Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of BiH, emphasized that the Via Dinarica project is an incentive for everyone in BiH to invest more in tourism. "I have to say that investments in tourism are small and we lag behind countries of the region. I believe that this is a chance to take a closer look at this important sector, which can be the engine of the economic development of Bosnia and Herzegovina. I think we need to build the perception of BiH as a country that is a desirable tourist destination. Tourism should be integrated in all cantonal, entity, and state-level plans, must be part of all reform agendas and all the budget plans - in order to make that key step forward and earn the first billion from tourism in BiH," Minister Šarović emphasized.
"Via Dinarica is a unique project because it naturally connects people of the Balkans, tourists from all over the world with BiH, as well as people with nature," said Sezin Sinanoglu, Resident Representative of UNDP in BiH. "Since 2015, exceptional success has been achieved. The living standard of tourist service providers in rural areas has been improved, as thanks to education and investment in better capacities they can provide better services to all visitors." Sinanoglu emphasized that very successful and strong partnership with the authorities at all levels was achieved through Via Dinarica Project. The uniqueness of the Project was recognized by the world's prestigious world media such as The Guardian, Lonely Planet, Outside, The Vogue, and National Geographic Traveler, the last of which has classified this destination as one of the best places in the world to visit in 2017.
The USAID Mission's Office of Economics Director Andrew Boegel believes that this project is remarkable. "The project has contributed to the development of the local community, the enterprises, the creation of new jobs and the marking of the thousands of kilometers, which emphasized the great potential BiH and tourism have," Bogel said.
"This project is developing sports-adventure and eco-tourism, which are the two fastest growing branches of tourism in the world and even in BiH," said Edita Đapo, Minister of Environment and Tourism of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. the project has led to economic strengthening of people in local communities, in mountains and in rural areas, enabling people to remain in these areas and to live up to their work.
"The FBiH Government has recognized the importance of this project and has supported it with 300,000 KM in the last two years. I hope that this project will also find institutional, political and financial support to continue with its realization," added Minister Đapo.
Predrag Gluhaković, Trade and Tourism Minister of Republika Srpska, said: "From an economic point of view, this project is of immense importance because Via Dinarica contributes to economic development through employment of the local population as well as increase of accommodation capacities in rural areas and increase of tourist services in Republika Srpska and Bosnia and Herzegovina. "
The film premiered on the film about Via Dinarica and opened an exhibition of photographs of the most beautiful landscapes of this corridor. Also presented are the Via Dinarica web portal and mobile application, and the special edition of the Bradt Travel Guide dedicated to the so-called. the white path of Via Dinarica in BiH. The panel discussions discussed with local and regional partners about possible ways of further development of the Via Dinarica initiative based on past experience.
Text source: UNDP BiH
Premijerno prikazivanje Via Dinarica videa tokom završne Via Dinarica konferencije, emotivno je ganuo sve prisutne. A o čemu se radi, pogledajte i sami.
Dobar duh Via Dinarice, njenih ljudi i prirode živi i ide dalje!
The Finnish tour operators and a blogger hiked in the great Dinaric Alps - undiscovered by tourists, and saw spectacular limestone peaks and caves. They experienced the wilderness of Sutjeska National Park, a stunning area located at the heart of the Dinaric Alps, and visited Perućica, one of Europe’s last remaining Primeval forests. The Finns visited Lukomir Highland Village on the Olympic mountain of Bjelašnica, cycled around the Blidinje glacier lake, walked over the old Ottoman Mostar Bridge, rafted the emerald waters of the Neretva river, and visited Bosnia and Herzegovina’s capital Sarajevo. The Finnish tourism experts believe that cultural heritage, historic places, beautiful nature and affordable prices are the key things, which would attract Finnish tourist to Bosnia and Herzegovina.
“I’ve done a lot of tracks and hikes around the world, but I got very excited when I saw pictures and heard about Via Dinarica. It is definitely a world class hiking and tracking area,” said Mr. Mikka Ukkonen, representative of the Finish tour operator Mandala Travel. He plans to bring Finish tourists to Via Dinarica trails: “Our plan is to offer more tours in the Balkans, and we can easily offer active tourism with hiking tours around the major culture sites on Via Dinarica. I think the selling points would be pristine nature, unique warm culture, good food, very welcoming people, and no mass tourism, (…) so you have a feeling of exploration.”
“I think there are a lot of different things to see (on Via Dinarica). We don’t have mountains in Finland, and in Bosnia and Herzegovina there are great mountain ranges, a lot of almost untouched nature to be seen, clear rivers, good fishing, rafting, canoeing, climbing, tracking and a lot of cultural and historic attractions throughout the country,” said Mr. Tatu Kullberg, representative of the Finish tour operator Aventura, and elaborated: “The Balkans is a still unknown (tourist) destination, but I think there is an interest for the Balkans, it’s becoming more and more popular destination.”
The tour for tour operators and a travel blogger - journalist from Finland was organized within the scope of the “Via Dinarica: A Platform for Sustainable Tourism Development and Local Economic Growth” Project, which aims at the development of potentials of the Dinaric Alps’ corridor and its promotion. It has been designed to reduce economic, social, and regional disparities in Bosnia and Herzegovina through promotion of Via Dinarica as a regional tourism attraction and to increase Bosnia and Herzegovina’s standing in the competitive nature-based tourism sphere. Via Dinarica Project aims to support the process of establishing the Via Dinarica corridor as a tourist product that provides sustainable livelihoods for a broad spectrum of stakeholders in local communities along the trail.
“The arrival of the Finnish tour operators is a step towards expanding the market of Via Dinarica as an international outdoor destination. Moreover, the FAM/Press trip is an opportunity to local tour agencies, with networks of other service providers in BiH, to connect with international tour operators and journalist to promote and sell the Via Dinarica. It is very encouraging that the initial feedback we received from the Finnish tour operators and a journalist is overly positive,” said Božena Kaltak, Via Dinarica project manager.
Via Dinarica is an initiative of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the United Nations Development Programme Country Office Bosnia and Herzegovina (UNDP BiH), and is implemented with the support of Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of BiH, Ministry of Environment and Tourism of the Federation of BiH, and Ministry of Trade and Tourism of Republika Srpska.
Finns discover magic of @Via_Dinarica tourism in BiH: http://bit.ly/2wctHXJ @USAIDBIH @UNDPBiH
UNDP BiH kindly request you to submit your proposal for Design and Delivery of Familiarization/Press (FAM/PRESS) trip for international tour operators and journalists to Via Dinarica destinations in BiH.
Proposals may be submitted on or before Monday, 20th November 2017 by 12:00 CET and via e-mail or courier mail to the address below:
United Nations Development Programme
Zmaja od Bosne bb, 71 000 Sarajevo
Your Proposal must be expressed in the English language, and valid for a minimum period of 60 days. Please refere to the link for more information regarding the call for proposal.
In the course of preparing your Proposal, it shall remain your responsibility to ensure that it reaches the address above on or before the deadline. Proposals that are received by UNDP after the deadline indicated above, for whatever reason, shall not be considered for evaluation.
The Via Dinarica is a long-distance trail which connects seven countries that encompass the Dinaric Alps mountain range: from Slovenia to northern Albania. The heart of this trail is in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), Croatia, and Montenegro. The project is an initiative of USAID and UNDP focusing on the portion of the mountain range in BiH, and is implemented in cooperation with national partners.
The Via Dinarica corridor consists of three major trails – the White, the Green and the Blue Trails - as a community-owned and operated tourism product that provides sustainable livelihoods for a broad range of stakeholders. Part of our development strategy within Via Dinarica includes organization of a FAM and Press trip for four more media outlets from European countries.
Come, explore and write about world’s best kept adventure secret at the end of November or beginning of December 2017.
Via Dinarica BiH Terra Dinarica | Vladimira Nazora 2, 71000 Sarajevo, BiH
Phone: +387 62 393 393 e-mail: email@example.com
Via Dinarica Croatia Ivanićgradska 59A, 10000 Zagreb, Cro
Phone: +385 91 500 55 27, Valentina Futač, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Via Dinarica Slovenia RRA Zeleni kras, d.o.o., Prečna ulica 1, 6257 Pivka, Slo
Phone: +386(0)5 72 12 243, Fax: +386(0)5 72 12 245, email@example.com