In Albania, agritourism is flourishing, driven by the stunning Vjosa Wild River National Park and its untamed river valleys. The Lile family farm and restaurant, located near the B禱nja thermal baths, offers Albanian and Greek cuisine, wine, and traditional raki. With tourism doubling from 2016 to 2023, theres a growing demand for quality local food and services. By fostering agritourism, Albania aims to create market opportunities and boost rural development, addressing interrelated sectors like agriculture, tourism, and culture.  is supporting the countrys vision for improving its agrifood system and increasing prosperity in rural areas.

Part community exchange, part communion with the natural world, part experiential hospitality, ECO EGYPT answers the call to the innate human desire for freedom, exploration and wonderment. Ecotourism done well offers a heightened sense of discovery through awe-inspiring natural landscapes and authentic engagement with unique local cultures. With the goal of prompting natural rediscovery and boosting the importance of ecological conservation, ECO EGYPT Experiences sheds light on the myriad wildlife, plant diversity, and natural landscapes on offer throughout the country. This work is implemented by the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency and Egypt, and financed by the Global Environment Facility.

Every year, Best Tourism Villages by recognizes rural destinations which stand out for their commitment to sustainability in all its aspects economic, social and environmental and the preservation and promotion of community-based values with the aim to make tourism a driver or rural development and well-being.

Tourism is one of Malaysias major economic sectors, contributing 6.7 percent to its gross domestic product, and was responsible for generating US$18.32 billion in revenue in 2019. However, the COVID-19 pandemic and consequent travel restrictions resulted in a 72 percent reduction in tourisms direct contribution to Malaysias GDP in 2020. To address the issues of tourism sustainability and island waste management, launched the  project and subsequently the .

A woman selling purses, a woman taking a picture, a plane, and a mosque.

On World Tourism Day 2023 (27 September), the emphasizes , underscoring the importance of directing resources towards the Sustainable Development Goals, the UN's 2030 roadmap for a better world. Targeted tourism investments can generate jobs, bolster local businesses, and reduce tourism's environmental impact while empowering communities and celebrating their cultures. It's time for innovation, not just profit-driven investments. For People. For the Planet. For Prosperity.

The recognizes villages for their commitment to innovation and sustainability in all its aspects economic, social and environmental and a focus on developing tourism in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

There are almost as many smartphones on the planet as there are people. From messaging, to maps, to mobile payments, it's almost impossible to imagine a world without internet or devices. Yet, for many women in developing countries, this is their reality. Here, men are twice as likely to use the internet than women. To empower rural women, and help them contribute to economic growth, access to the internet and digital platforms is vital. trains women in digital finance and marketing, and ensures they have access to the technology they need to connect to the rest of the world. Find out about taking tomato-growing to new heights in Pakistan, and texting for tulips in Bangladesh.

mammal watching

Mammalwatching: The New Ecotourism Frontier

presents a new social movement mammalwatching. First came birdwatching, then whalewatching, now there is mammalwatching which is like birdwatching except with mammals. Like birders, mammalwatchers have a life list that they actively seek to fill, and every mammal counts - from the Big Five (lions, buffaloes, leopards, elephants, rhinos), to the more humbly proportioned elephant shrew. Fast-growing nature tourism has made tremendous contributions to nature conservation, prompting the creation of protected areas, contributing to research through citizen science, and with the ecotourism dollars that bring practical financial benefits to people living in rural and undisturbed environments worldwide.

A person bathing in a clear sea next to rock formations

Sustainable tourism, including ecotourism, is a cross-cutting activity that can contribute to the achievement of the by fostering economic growth, alleviating poverty, creating full and productive employment and decent work for all. Global Tourism Resilience Day (17 February), aims to foster resilient tourism development to deal with shocks, taking into account the vulnerability of the tourism sector to emergencies. It is also a call for action for Member States to develop national strategies for rehabilitation after disruptions.

32 destinations from all around the world have been named as Best Tourism Villages 2022 by recognizing rural destinations that are embracing tourism as a driver of development.

A journey into the heart of Ecuadors Amazon rainforest is redefining sustainable tourism. Ramiro Vargas is a local leader, tour guide, and founding staff member of the Kapawi Ecolodge, perched in one of Ecuadors easternmost provinces. Ramiros passion for service guiding groups into the forest, and volunteering in numerous community roles extends to cultivating the next generation of youth leadership. While tourism came to a halt in 2020, , a -implemented programme - made a call for proposals to support communities dependent on wildlife-based tourism.

Global tourism experienced a 4% upturn in 2021, compared to 2020. However, international tourist arrivals were still 72% below pre-pandemic levels according to estimates by .

In the three decades leading up to the COVID-19 pandemic, world tourism grew steadily year on year. But in 2020, the industry suffered an unprecedent hit, accounting for a staggering 70% of the fall in global gross domestic product (GDP).

The UN World Tourism Organization () has been constantly assessing the impact of the pandemic, and working hard to help kickstart the industry on behalf of millions around the world who rely on it.

Zoritsa Urosevic, UNWTOs Executive Director to UN Newss Bessie Du, and highlighted the need to rethink the whole sector, boost rural tourism, and improve safety for travellers.

Audio Credit: Bessie Du, UN News - Chinese

Photo Credit: UNWTO

Though its weather may be unpredictable, the beautiful Mt Jahorina in Bosnia and Herzegovina a 1984 Winter Olympic venue has attracted thousands of skiers for decades. But in recent years, nature admirers have begun flocking to the area in spring, summer, and autumn as well. The Jahorina community has noted the potential for year-round tourism, including outdoor and mountain sports, youth camps and activities, and conference tourism.

continues to suffer in the COVID-19 pandemic. Forecasts suggest a by the end of 2021. This is a major shock for developed economies, but for developing countries, it is an emergency. With many millions of livelihoods in jeopardy, it is time to rethink, transform, and safely restart tourism. Tourism creates decent jobs and helps to build economies and societies that work for everyone. On World Tourism Day, we recognize the power and potential of tourism to advance prosperity and drive inclusive, sustainable development.