Raising awareness on Environment & Sustainability topics: good practices and policy recommendations

Rivers are the lifelines of river cities and should be the showcases of environment protection and sustainable development for tourism use

River tourism has the potential to turn rivers and their hinterland into a sustainable economic and social asset. Through tourism, rivers can be utilized as an engine for regional development, improving the city’s connectivity with rural areas, acting as a mode of transport, and as a means of protecting unique ecosystems and biodiversity. Finally, they can improve people’s quality of life – but only when managed in a sustainable way. Furthermore, sustainable river tourism can work as tool for promoting more responsible behaviour from residents and visitors.

STAR Cities selection of good practices

PartnersGood practicesDescription
LjubljanaGreen Scheme of Slovenian TourismTool for the development of sustainable tourism in destinations and businesses, under the brand Slovenia Green.
Val-de-MarneAu fil de l’eau boat trips and shuttle servicesA social programme contributing to both soft mobility and valorisation of natural heritage of rivers.
KaunasUPYNES - TẽKA platformA virtual tool of the TẽKA initiative collects an archive of the memory of rivers, streams, and banks of the Kaunas region.
KaunasLet‘s celebrate the riverCommunity festival, aiming to develop the dialogue between sustainable river tourism forms and activities.
LjubljanaLjubljana European Green Capital 2016Focus on pedestrian & cycling networks, new green spaces & public transport, attracting more and more tourists.
Val-de-Marne Big Cultural WalksWalking events punctuated by cultural visits and animations to make hundreds of participants discover the territory.
Val-de-Marne Haute Ile Nature ParkA Natura 2000 site inspired by the natural landscapes close to the Marne river and implementing an innovative management.

Policy recommendations to support and accelerate development of sustainable river tourism:

  1. Sustainability is to become the new norm
  2. Holistic sustainable strategic frameworks are important, but not enough
  3. Sustainable tourism needs to benefit local communities
  4. Sustainable river mobility must be at the heart of sustainable river tourism
  5. A balanced mix of events and all-year round tourism products is essential
  6. It's an imperative to provide more sustainable options

Learn more on the Good Practices Guide