In Europe, cultural tourism accounts for 40% of all tourist activities.

Cultural heritage is important for achieving inclusive and sustainable development, and it can help cities and regions revitalize. Through a variety of instruments, the European Union (EU) collaborates with cities and regions to provide financial support for culture, raise awareness of the potential of culture and cultural heritage, and develop integrated strategies.

The European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) supports cultural heritage by funding actions that support the local protection, development, and promotion of cultural assets. There are examples of action between 2007 and 2013, and also 2014 and 2020, such as but not limited to a preservation project in Pompeii; a state-of-the-art museum in Lascaux, France; the renewal of Nant Gwrtheyrn quarry village in Wales, which received the Regiostar title for excellence in 2018. 

More examples of cultural heritage projects, including the REGIOSTARS Awards, can be found on the European Regional Development Fund's website.

Read more about the importance of cultural heritage in regional policy here!