Slow Tourism in the Valley of Springs
Slow Tourism is a tourism concept that was embraced by the tourism-operators in the Valley of Springs following an inspiring professional visit to Toscana, Italy. The concept was adapted to the unique demands of tourism in Israel, generally, and in the Valley of Springs in particular. The Valley of Springs definition of “Slow Tourism“ is to encourage its vacation seekers to focus on one location while on vacation. A location that will enable them to deeply engage in local experiences in a calm manner, by interacting with the local scenery, the culture and the residents, at their own pace, while adhering to sound environmental conservation values.
The slow tourism concept strengthens the regional tourism-economy by promoting and enabling visitors to stay extensively within this particular region, deepening the experience and the understanding of the area. Additionally, the model connects new populations into the economic tourism landscape, such as artists and gallery owners, cultural activities in local communities and in the region, etc. By so doing, the Valley of Springs is transformed into a region that is rich with tourist attractions, options and opportunities, one where the number of people and organizations that cooperate to improve and strengthen the economy is growing rapidly.
The Valley of Springs is a pioneer leader for this concept in Israel; however, that may well be duplicated to fit other regions.
The main objectives of the project are:
- Strengthening the economic position of tourist operators in the Valley of Springs by increasing the number of day-visit-sites and the number of overnight stays in the Valley by 15%.
- Creating & strengthening employment by including at least 5 new entrepreneurs to the tourism activities within two years.
- Creating a rich selection of tourist attractions & options by connecting at least 75% of the artists, artisans, culture-coordinators at local communities, and tour guides to the Valley’s Slow Tourism Club.
- Connecting the full spectrum of tourism opportunities, to a woven model that offers activities of interest, which keeps the tourist within at least 4 communities and within the locality. Exposing Slow Tourism to the Valley of Springs concept to incoming (overseas) tourism by producing the “Springs Snail” booklet, a booklet of tour-trails and maps in at least 2 languages as well as an Internet site.
- Acceptance to the International Slow Tourism movement, including maintaining international standards.