Sustainable tourism, tackling overtourism priorities for Greece

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Greek Minister of Tourism Vasilis Kikilias.

Fight against overtourism introducing other destinations and redirecting travelers to new places is a top priority for Greece, said Tourism Minister Vasilis Kikilias in an interview with Kathimerini newspaper.

Kikilias said the government, ministry and sector stakeholders were formulating a new tourism model focusing on sustainable practices and protect the environment while creating added value and income equitably distributed among all regions of the country.

In this sense, the Minister indicated that efforts were being made to bring lesser known destinations for travelers via a unified information network. Much of the ministry’s actions, Kikilias said, are directed to the mainland and not so much to the popular islands, with the emphasis on maintaining the authenticity and diversification of tourism offerings.

“All of the above, combined with the promotion of alternative forms of tourism – which, contrary to what many believe, provide high added value across the spectrum of the Greek economy – are our main tools,” he said. he declares.

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Kikilias then announced that in the coming period the government would introduce a series of incentives and disincentives to tackle the problem of overtourism during high season in popular destinations such as Santorini.

He added that tourism planning, which enjoys the support of industry stakeholders, would also include establishing the port of Thessaloniki as a cruise home port and hub that would give “significant impetus to the development of the city ​​and would considerably strengthen the region’s tourism dynamic ”. .

Citing a diaNEOsis study, Kikilias said cruise tourism can increase state coffers by 1.3 billion euros.


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