The Danube. A river that defines all of us who live around it. Long, rich, offering a million treasures. And it is full of stories. Wherever we go, wherever we meet, thousands of stories are told about nature, history, beauty, people, and the world. Short and long tales, complicated and simple, buzz around us in every clearing, town, and cycle path, filling the region with the colours, sounds and smells of the past and future.
It is this treasure trove of stories that the Transdanube Travel Stories project has focused on over 30 months of collaborative work. As the project drew to a close, a final conference was held to present these treasures to a wide range of participants.
One river, six Stories
The themes of the Danube Travel Stories range from the discovery of high-quality nature reserves between Germany and the Danube Delta to a summary of the development of Europe along the Danube to the highlights and upheavals of Europe today. Through the Romans, religions, trade and related human encounters, the shaping of the Danube region shows that it has always been a melting pot of cultures and nations, but also a place where borders have been drawn together. All these developments have left behind a great legacy of art, architecture and culture, which offers a wealth of fascinating experiences, especially during trips along the Danube. The emphasis is not so much on seeing the old ruins, but on experiencing what these ruins meant in former times and still mean for the local communities and the Danube region as a cultural entity.
Closing conference at the Linz Tobacco Factory
If you would like to watch the event, you can do so HERE.
Participants and tourism experts were invited to a “journey” on the Danube at the project's closing event in Linz (organised by Linz Tourism Board) on 24 November 2022.
The panel guided the participants along the Danube river: They started at the source of the Danube. Danube where they introduced the six stories.
Following the river's flow, participants were introduced to sustainable travelling whilst experiencing the stories along the way. Travelling itself can be perceived as an experience when getting in touch with local people or hiking along a pilgrimage trail. Additional tools for experience were created in the project, such as virtual reality shows or cooking festivals.
At the end, symbolised by the delta actual green travel products were presented to tour operators. Some of our team members who participated in our Danube Travel Challenge event also attended our conference in person, where we were able to learn about their travel experiences and the challenges they faced.
Our experts gave us an insight into the professional work that went behind the creation of Danube Travel Stories: how the stories were developed, and how the narratives were created. Capacity building was also part of the project. A Winter School trained guides in storytelling and experiences. The Mobility Management Training introduced sustainable travelling tools to members of tourism and transport sector. The Transdanube Travel Stories build on two previous projects that analysed, extended and used public transport for journeys across the Danube: Transdanube and Transdanube.Pearls,
The final panel – the sea – dealt with future perspectives: cultural routes will further develop green travel products for their respective topics; guides will spread the stories. At the transnational level a working group for sustainable tourism mobility within the Pan-European Transport-Health-Environment Programme (THE PEP) will take up the results of the project to contribute to the implementation of the Vienna Declaration "Building a better future by transforming to new, cheaper, safe, healthy and inclusive mobility and transport".
The project, funded by the European Interreg Danube Transnational Programme, is planned to run until 31 December 2022 and has a total budget of 1.82 million Euros.
The project was implemented under the Interreg Danube Programme with 10 partners from 7 countries. Representatives of the different cultural routes supported the partners in their work:
- Environment Agency Austria (Austria)
- Danube Office Ulm/Neu-Ulm (Germany) - representing Danube.Pearls Network
- WDG Danube Upper Austria Tourism Ltd. (Austria) - representing Danube.Pearls Network
- Tourist board Linz (Austria) - representing the Route of Emperors and Kings
- West Pannon Regional and Economic Development Public Nonprofit Ltd. (Hungary) - representing Via Sancti Martini
- Institute for Culture, Tourism and Sport Murska Sobota (Slovenia) - representing European Route of Jewish Heritage
- Croatian Association for Tourism and Rural Development “The Village Membership Club” (Croatia) - representing Iter Vitis Route
- Association for promoting tourism in Oradea and its region (Romania) - representing Réseau Art Nouveau Network
- Danube Competence Center - DCC (Serbia) - representing the Roman Emperors and Danube Wine Route
- DANUBEPARKS – Danube River Network of Protected Areas (Austria)
Viktória IILÉS (Communication manager WestPannon Nonprofit Ltd.)
Visit our website: http://www.interreg-danube.eu/approved-projects/transdanube-travel-stories
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