The Romanian-Bulgarian cross-border region is extremely rich in cultural and natural heritage (which is the basis for numerous tourism activities, an important source of added value for any vacation) but suffers from a poor promotion of this heritage with negative effects on the number of tourist overnights in the area.
The RO-BG cross-border area is also characterized by:
-Insufficient exploitation of the rich and diverse natural and cultural heritage (history, architecture) of regional and international interest.
-Lack of alternatives to traditional tourist products, the development of thematic tourism being statistically unnoticeable.
-Uneven repartition of tourism (focused on the Black Sea coast).
With a total budget of 400.000 euro, KIDS aims to improve the promotion and valorization of the natural and cultural heritage from the cross-border area through offering children and their families an unique travelling concept in the RO-BG cross-border area: Family Fun Festival and 3 guided tours designed especially for children and their families promoting the tourism attractions and activities in the cross-border area – Fun and Sports Tour, Cultural Tour, Natural Landscapes Tour. The project thus contributes to tourism diversification by introducing 4 new tourism products, leading to an increased number of overnights in the region.
The project will include the following main activities:
- Information and promotion activities – will be organized for promoting the project and the INTERREG V-A Programme, according to the EC Regulations and observing the Visual Identity Manual and also for disseminating the project results. The information and promotion activities will include: two press conferences organized at the beginning and the end of the project, by each of the 3 partners; preparing and disseminating printed information and promotion materials; planning and implementing the online promotion of the project. The project website will be developed and regularly updated. An online promotion campaign will also be carried out.
- The consortium will develop a management plan for raising awareness and promoting the common RO-BG cultural and natural heritage targeting children and their families. The output will consist of a best practice model that will be used by the project consortium to develop 4 touristic products especially designed for families with children – Family Fun Festival and 3 self-guided tours promoting the touristic attractions and activities in the cross-border area – Fun and Sports Tour, Cultural Tour, Natural Landscapes Tour.
- The consortium will develop two instruments that will increase the degree of know-how and the attractiveness of the touristic objectives and activities in the cross-border area for families with children. The first one is the mobile application that will contain an inventory of the main touristic attractions for families with children, presented in a fun and easy way to understand by all ages. The users will fill in a short questionnaire and based on the answers they will be directed to one of the 3 self-guided tours offered through the project. Fun and Sports Tour, Cultural Tour, Natural Landscapes Tour. After choosing a tour, the users will find out interesting facts about each location from the CB region they will visit and they will be asked to solve fun challenges at 5-7 locations per tour, thus earning points. At the end of the game, the users will receive their final score and they will learn how well they performed compared to others. The second instrument is represented by a travel-kit especially designed for children – it will include a backpack filled with fliers, lanterns, maps, first aid kits, 3D brochures, thematic caps etc. The two instruments will make exploring the natural and cultural heritage from the cross-border region fun, interactive and engaging.
- The consortium will organize 25 events in schools throughout the cross-border area during which the products of the project – the Family Fun Festivals, the 3 self-guided tours and the mobile application – will be presented to the children and their parents. All the children present at the events will be given the travel kits especially designed for them. We estimate that about 2,500 persons will attend the events, out of which 50% will take one of the three guided tours and will use the mobile application.
- In order to further promote and valorize the RO-BG cultural heritage, the consortium will organize 4 Family fun festivals which will include tournaments, painting, crafts, poetry, music, arts and traditions, food from cross-border area. Each festival will have at least 300 attendants from both countries, most of them being families with children – we estimate that the festivals will generate an increase in the number of visits by 300 visitors.
- Project management
KIDS project contributes to the Programme outputs targeted by this call as follows:
– 4 new tourism products will be introduced in the Romanian-Bulgarian cross-border cultural tourism circuit, thus contributing to the enrichment of the tourism sites inventory – the 3 self-guided tours designed especially for families with children – Fun and Sports Tour, Cultural Tour, Natural Landscapes Tour – and the Family fun festival (organised in four different locations)
– the project involves the development and implementation of a management plan for raising awareness and promoting the common RO-BG cultural and natural heritage targeting children and their families – thus contributing to the Programme output “Number of common strategies, policies or management plans for valorizing (including raising awareness) the cultural and natural heritage through its restoration and promotion for sustainable economic uses”
– the project will generate an increase in the number of visits as 1,550 visitors – families with children – will come to the specific supported sites of cultural heritage in the cross-border area, increasing the number of tourist overnights in the CBC region by 1,550.
The cross-border approach is essential considering that the area is extremely rich in cultural and natural heritage (which is the basis for numerous tourism activities, an important source of added value for any vacation) but suffers from a poor promotion of this heritage. KIDS will use modern instruments which will increase the degree of know-how and the attractiveness of the touristic objectives and activities in the cross-border area for families with children, both from Romania and Bulgaria.