According to the data of the specialized international platform Adrenaline-Hunter.com, Greece emerged as the third destination worldwide in bookings for outdoor activities.
The ranking was obtained after checking the bookings in our country during the previous tourist season between April 1st and October 31st, 2018.
First on the list is France and the second place in bookings was occupied by Spain, while Greece with a small difference comes in third place in preference of adventure travelers. Portugal was in fourth place, while Croatia’s rise to fifth place was significant.
Regarding the internal ranking , Santorini is in first place, followed by Chania, Heraklion, Athens, Mykonos, Kefalonia, Paros, Corfu, Rethymnon, Rhodes, Kos, Agios Nikolaos in Crete, the Olympus, Zakynthos and Halkidiki. Also, Kefalonia, Paros, Corfu, Rethymnon with sea activities being preferred, while in terms of mountain destinations, Olympus and Meteora are preferred by tourists visiting Greece.
Profile of adventure travelers
A key element of all adventure travelers is the need to do things that are different while at the destination and to discover the destination in a different way. Usually adventure travelers book the activities while they are already at the destination – that is, during the trip.
Outdoor activities are preferred by travelers aged 20-35, the so-called millennials , while the average age on the Adrenaline Hunter platform for Greece was 29 years and they are either travelers who booked their holidays independently (FIT), or travelers who traveled with a packet.
At the top of the bookings are the French who have a tradition of outdoor sports and activities. They are followed by the English with a small difference and the Americans who increased significantly during 2018. The Germans are in fourth place while the Dutch are in fifth place. They are followed by the Australians, Canadians, Italians, Greeks, Israelis, Swiss and Belgians.
A leading role in the offered tourist product of Greece is claimed by the outdoor activities (Outdoor Activities), which are developing at a rapid pace and aim to lengthen the tourist season, but also to highlight areas in the tourist foreground, which until now were not at the forefront of visitorship . The common denominator of the initiatives that have been launched, both at the level of their promotion and at the technical and institutional level, is the increase of the economic footprint in the local communities but also the contribution of their outdoor activities to the overall tourism figures of the country, as they explain to APE -EIA experts of the tourism sector.
Outdoor Activities are the whole “Greek experience”
With an eye on the “next day” for Greek tourism, the managing director of Marketing Greece, Ioanna Dretta, reports to APE-MPE that outdoor activities (everything that has to do with activities in the mountains, on rivers, at sea, in the relationship between man and nature, etc.) are in great demand internationally and the pandemic has even accelerated it. “At the moment outdoor activities are “drivers of demand internationally” and in this light, Greece not only should not be left behind, but is also described as the ideal place for their development on a global scale”, he says and adds: “The importance of these forms of development of thematic tourism should not be identified only in the holding of a competition, but in the “marriage” achieved with the primary sector of the economy,
Small and medium business ecosystems live and breathe outdoor activities
In support of the above, the president of the Peloponnese Tourist Organization, Konstantinos Marinakos, points out to APE-MPE that through outdoor activities, the promotion of Greek destinations, which the flow of the flourishing of Greek tourism has not “touched”, passes through. Coming from a Region that enjoys natural beauty and fields for developing thematic forms of tourism, Mr. Marinakos points out that Mount Mainalo, Mount Parnonas, mountainous Corinthia, Kalavryta, etc. stand out for their outdoor activities. Around these mountainous masses of the Peloponnese, as he emphasizes, businesses have been organized, which contribute to local income and employment, etc. For example, in Mainalos there are approximately 200 small family tourism businesses, with a capacity of 2. 000 beds offering employment to approximately 400 people. More than three times the number of workers employed in catering and leisure services, driven by outdoor activities.
Initiatives to promote outdoor activities
In the meantime, the bet, which should be won on this front, is none other than the spread of outdoor activities outside the borders and the approach of the “target market” for Greece. In this direction, Marketing Greece is already running a campaign, which places Greece on the map of the ever-increasing trend for outdoor activities. The aim of the campaign, as Mrs. Dretta emphasizes, is to respond to the new demands of the traveler, who, influenced by the new environment that has been created, now changes his habits and reshapes his choices. At the forefront of new habits, the need to feel safe plays a leading role, while maintaining social distances and claiming more “space” for yourself and your fellow traveler. Alongside,
with Mrs. Dretta noting that Olympus is a separate “Brand” in itself. At the same time, the actions to highlight Pindos as an ideal field for the promotion of outdoor forms of tourism are also in full progress, as the mayor of Argitheas and president of the Pindos network, Andreas Stergiou, notes in APE-MPE. The Pindos network has already included 11 municipalities with 286 communities of which 250 are purely mountainous and for which the development of alternative forms of tourism is described as a ” for their sustainability. In fact, if the pandemic had not set in, says Mr. Stergiou, the network would have already implemented the road map for the promotion of Pindos within and outside the borders. In Pindos, however, the implementation of a special plan is underway, which has been embraced by the local communities and concerns the Pindus Trail, which will complement the older Pindos Way and as emphasized will be one of the largest national trails in Europe