The EDEN Project (European Destinations of ExcelleNce), run by the European Commission, promotes lesser-known nature tourism destinations in the EU to the general public. The EDEN project is dedicated to letting people know about hidden ‘gems’ in Europe and promoting sustainable, ‘green’ tourism.
After all, there’s more to Europe than the Eiffel Tower and the Roman Colosseum!
Each year, a specific theme is selected and in 2010 it was ‘aquatic tourism’. Some 25 destinations were chosen as winners and these are listed below :
Belgium ‘The lakes of Eau d’Heure’
Bulgaria ‘Regional Administration Silistra’
Cyprus ‘Kato Pyrgos’
Czech Republic ‘Bystřicko’
Estonia ‘Lake Võrtsjärv’
Finland ‘Saimaa Holiday’
France ‘The Grand Site du Marais Poitevin’
Germany ‘Western Pomeranian River District’
Greece ‘Prefecture of Serres’
Hungary ‘Lake Tisza’
Iceland ‘The Westfjords region’
Ireland ‘Loop Head Peninsula in Co. Clare’ (West of Ireland)
Italy ‘Municipality of Monte Isola’
Latvia ‘Sea Resort Jurmala’
Lithuania ‘Zarasai Region – Heavenly Shore on Earth’
Luxembourg ‘The nature park of the Upper Sûre’
Malta ‘Isla (Senglea)’
Netherlands ‘WaterReijk Weerribben Wieden’
I lead a small group of nature and wildlife-loving walkers to Biebrza National Park during springtime. Check out the details of our next walking and wildlife spotting trip to Poland.
Romania ‘Geoagiu Bai’
Slovenia ‘River Kolpa’
Spain ‘A Guarda’
Turkey ‘Bitlis – Nemrut Crater Lake’
EDEN Project Winners
Find out more about EDEN and past winners.
Indeed, Ireland’s various winners over the years have been grouped together under a single website promoting each of them as alternative tourism destinations. Check it out at Ireland’s Eden. Past winners include Mayo’s own Mulranny, a beautiful little village on the northern shore of Clew Bay. Mulranny is a stopover on the hugely successful Great Western Greenway, a mostly off-road walking and cycling track laid down on a disused railway from Westport to Achill.