The city of Valencia in Spain has been named the European Capital of Smart Tourism for 2022.
The city has been chosen by a jury of the European Commission, while the decision came after taking into consideration Valencia’s achievements in sustainability, accessibility, digitalization, and cultural heritage and creativity, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
Other applications from a total of 16 other countries submitted initiatives, such as Bordeaux (France), Dublin (Ireland), Copenhagen (Denmark), Florence (Italy) as well as Palma (Spain).
In this regard, Middelfart (Denmark) has been chosen as the European Destination of Excellence (EDEN) for 2022.
Such initiatives attempt to focus on smart and sustainable tourism practices and promote the growth of such practices in Europe, as reported by EU Reporter.
As for Valencia’s recent award, the Councilor for Tourism of Valencia City Council, Emiliano Garcia, has stressed that such distinction from the EU shows recognition of the work on sustainability that the Spanish city is developing together with the business industry.
“Valencia is positioning itself as a cosmopolitan, intelligent, and sustainable tourist destination, at the level of large tourist cities and European capitals,” he pointed out.
Garcia has emphasized that Valencia is the leading pioneering project regarding sustainability.
“We are positioning ourselves as a destination for international filming thanks to the constitution of the Film Office; we are the World Design Capital for 2022, and in parallel, we continue to maximize the value and visibility of our most traditional heritage, both tangible and intangible,” he pointed out.
Valencia will introduce a promotional video in the city and other promotional activities within the EU to support visibility and awareness of the award, as reported by Travel Agent Central.
Up to this point, Valencia has promoted projects that permit progress and meet the Destination Marketing Organization’s sustainable development objectives. In addition, by 2025, Valencia aims to be carbon-neutral.
The winners will receive their awards officially at the Award Ceremony that will be held on November 16. The event is co-organized by the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union together with the European Commission.
Spain is the second most visited territory in Europe. According to the UNWTO report, this country welcomed a total of 82.8 million visitors during 2018.
However, Spain has also been profoundly affected by the Coronavirus and its new strains. Therefore, the Commission is attempting to create a transition pathway to promote a more resilient and innovative tourism ecosystem to help the tourism sector get out of the crisis caused by the virus.