How are destinations developed and branded through sustainable tourism? Meet Istra Ecoxperience

Today, the Administrative Department for Tourism of the Istrian County presented a website and brochure - Istra Ecoxperience, all with the aim of branding Istria as a sustainable destination and raising awareness of the importance of ecology and ...

Today, the Administrative Department for Tourism of the Istrian County presented a website and brochure - Istria Ecoxperience, all with the aim of branding Istria as a sustainable destination and raising awareness of the importance of ecology and networking of stakeholders in the ecological offer in Istria. 

On a new page through the slogan "All eco in Istria" eco accommodations, events and activities, museums and all other accompanying facilities and eco producers are united in one place. All united through one platform, which will be continuously upgraded in the future. 

Thus, numerous eco-friendly facilities in Istria are available on the web platform, such as private accommodation Eco Domus, hotels and camps that own some of the eco brands, organic producers with their eco products, such as olive oil, wine, beer, various fruits and vegetables, lavender and lavender products, flour and cereals, honey and other bee products, etc. Also, the brochure lists green beaches, protected areas, museums and theme parks, charging stations for e-vehicles and e-bikes, and eco-friendly activities and events. 

The website is available in 4 languages ​​(Croatian, English, Italian and German), and there is also an interactive map of Istria showing all the contents. Also, the site will publish interesting facts and news in the field of ecology and sustainable development, as well as a quarterly bulletin of the County Department of Tourism with useful information on new trends, examples of good practice and tips for corporate social responsibility.

The pages are adapted for search in desktop and mobile versions, as well as in Croatian and European legislation on the accessibility of websites and mobile applications of public sector bodies, especially for the elderly and people with disabilities. 

"Nature, culture, tradition and people are an important aspect of green tourism, and this booklet seeks to popularize and raise awareness of the local population, entrepreneurship, but also tourists about the existence of such an eco-friendly offer in our county. In this way, we want to contribute to the preservation of Istrian natural and cultural resources, raising awareness of the need for nature protection, improving the lives of local communities and encouraging new business opportunities in our region, respecting the principles of sustainable development., said the head of the Administrative Department for Tourism of the Istrian County, Nada Prodan Mrakovic.

What is ultimately wanted to encourage is the development of the local community, consumption of local and indigenous products from organic and organic farming, protection of natural resources, cultural heritage, customs and traditions of the local population. 

The main idea is to allow each content to expand and special presentation that was limited through the printed brochure, and the pages are intended to be specially optimized for SEO and integrated with social networks, which will allow better visibility and greater reach of pages to the target audience.

"In the long run, the intention is for the site to become a reference place for searching for eco-friendly content in Istria ", emphasizes Prodan Mraković and adds that great contribution to the collection and unification of these contents was made by partners and associates of the Department: Istrian Development Tourist Agency IRTA doo, Department for Bike & Outdoor, Agency for Rural Development of Istria AZRRI doo, Istrian County Tourist Board, Natura Histrica Public Institution and dr.

Istria Ecoxperience brochure

The brochure Istra ecoxperience - all eco from Istria, was designed and published three years ago by the Administrative Department for Tourism of the Istrian County, and was created on the basis of the Green Plan of the Istrian County, and guided by the principles of sustainable development promoted by the County. The brochure has now been refreshed and supplemented, as an additional tool for promoting both the website and the entire eco story of Istria.

Attachment: Download the brochure Istria Ecoxperience

Eco Domus - branding of family accommodation 

I must definitely mention the long-standing Eco Domus project. It is a labeling program implemented by the Administrative Department for Tourism of the Istrian County with the aim of increasing social and environmental responsibility in tourism.

Eco Domus is intended for small tourist accommodation facilities with a capacity of up to 30 beds that operate throughout the year, and its goal is to encourage private renters to operate in accordance with the principles of sustainable development and sustainable tourism. 

Currently in Istria County there are 113 facilities in family accommodation under the label Eco House.

All in all, a great rounded story, from eco accommodation, producers, content and eco experience. It is currently the best example in Croatia of how to brand and develop sustainable tourism at the destination level. This is the basis and only the first step, without which there is no further development.

The real work is just beginning, but Istria has been developing market concepts step by step for years, including this one, through various tenders and guidelines, so this platform did not come overnight, but has concrete figures and already added value (longer season, higher prices, better guests) for everyone involved. Bravo Istria.

As another phenomenal and ingenious example of branding is ISTRAtinčica

Namely, it is a small package in which there is a paper "bag" (on the right in the picture) in which Istrian daisy seeds, which the hosts who have the Eco Domus label give to their guests as a gift. Thus, each guest receives Istrian daisy seeds, which have not been treated, and are produced by OPG Bel.

Phenomenal detail and powerful story. When the guests return to their homes, the crew of the Istrian seed and Istria stays with them in January throughout the year. What an excellent positioning on a conscious and unconscious level as well as proof of the concept of sustainable development of Istria. Of course how the guests will return to Istria. Ingenious.

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