1.2 Promotion and preservation of natural heritage
Hajnowski Poviat (Podlaskie Voivodeship, Poland)
Department for Education of Kamianiec District Executive Committee (Brest Oblast, Belarus)
A common challenge to face is the low attractiveness and competitiveness of the cross-border area of the Bialowieza Forest in two neighbouring countries: Poland and Belarus. The existing marking of tourist routes is old, damaged and poorly visible, while the information boards are faded and partially damaged. Not many promotional materials presenting the unique values of the Bialowieza Forest are produced in foreign languages. Besides, there are barely any environmental education initiatives which would be of high demand.
The idea of the Active-Bialowieza-Forest project is to popularize the natural wealth of the former nature reserve on both sides of the border. The Bialowieza Forest Heritage Centre will be established in Hajnówka (PL). The existing Tourist Centre in Kamianets (BY) will be re-equipped. Both centres will undertake joint activities to preserve the natural heritage of this beautiful natural park, such as organizing three bicycle rallies, two thematic nordic walks and a seminar “Academy of Bialowieza Forest Heritage”. The best photos taken during these joint activities will be demonstrated at the exhibition “Heritage of the Bialowieza Forest” in Poland. The conference on ecotourism will summarize project activities and will demonstrate the enormous tourism potential of the region on both sides of the border.
Thanks to the project, the tourist infrastructure of the Bialowieza Forest will be modernized, new engaging forms of sightseeing (with quest routes and QR codes) will be created. These activities will allow tourists to extend their stay in the Bialowieza Forest. Numerous initiatives in the field of nature education and preservation of unique biodiversity (bicycle expeditions, thematic walks, conferences), as well as new tourist materials (guide, photo album, maps) will increase the tourist attractiveness of the region and contribute to a wider promotion of the Bialowieza Forest among potential tourists and border population.
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