Recently the World Tourism Organization UNWTO announced that the villages of Western Samos will be included at the Organization’s List of ‘Best Tourism Villages’.
“Some of the best examples of villages embracing tourism to provide opportunity and drive sustainable development have been celebrated at the UNWTO General Assembly in Madrid”, as stated at the Organization’s webpage.
The Best Tourism Villages Network idea started with the aim to “advance the role of tourism in safeguarding rural villages, along with their landscapes, natural and cultural diversity, and their local values and activities, including local gastronomy”, a valuable initiative to secure all those villages have saved so far for us and the for future generations.
Tenths of villages across the world are granted each year this recognition and Samos is considered to be included at the List soon.
Their “natural and cultural resources as well as their innovative and transformative actions and commitment to the development of tourism in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)” of UNWTO, offers the opportunity to stand out and attract more visitors for the years to come as those villages show commitment to make tourism “a strong driver of their development and wellbeing”.
The villages are annualy evaluated by an independent Advisory Board that takes into account criteria as in the areas of:
Cultural and Natural Resources
Promotion and Conservation of Cultural Resources
Tourism Potential and Development and Value Chain Integration
Governance and Prioritization of Tourism
Infrastructure and Connectivity
Health, Safety and Security
Western Samos villages are yet outside of the main List but are expected to be entered together with 19 others (from countries such as Lebanon, Argentina, Austria, Portugal, Serbia, Mexico, Korea and many more) at the “Upgrade Programme” of the Initiative. All these villages will be part of the UNWTO Best Tourism Villages Network.
When in Samos, don’t miss the Western Samos villages; visit them, walk in the small streets, take a break, a coffee, a snack, take photos as souvenirs and discover their local goodies, the traditional products and above anything else, meet the locals to get the real vibe of the island.
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