Api-tourism: Transforming Slovenia’s Apicultural Traditions Into A Unique Travel Experience
Free (open access)
963 - 974
I. Kline Arih, T. Arih Korošec
As a uniquely fresh approach to sustainability, api-tourism represents a new dimension in travel in which beekeeping, as a way of life, is intertwined with a desire to discover the natural and unique in the exchange of knowledge and experience. In Slovenia, socially, economically and environmentally responsible tourism is not merely an option, but a precondition for the further growth of the sector. Awareness of this has prompted two Slovenian partners from the private and public sectors to co-create a range of api-tourism products under the ApiRoutes brand as a fusion of green destinations, apiculture and travel. Concordant with the healthy eco-friendly trends which favour sustainable development, api-tourism demonstrates the transformation of a country’s natural wealth and cultural heritage into an authentic travel experience as well as a most promising economic activity. This perspective is illustrated by several examples of good practice described herein. Slovenia is the first – and as yet the only – country to certify its api-tourism providers. Further to this, such an innovative niche product illustrates the importance of an advanced marketing strategy which communicates shared values and shared experiences with the intention of building powerful emotional connections between the brand and the consumer. Api-tourism development enjoys the strong support of the SPIRIT Slovenia development agency, the Slovenian Tourist Board as well as the country’s Ministry of Agriculture and the Environment, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Slovenia’s pre-eminence in this sector is further confirmed through its global role of api-tourism co-ordinator within Apimondia – the International Federation of Beekeepers’ Associations.
beekeeping tradition, apiculture, api-tourism, well-being, responsible travel, sustainable tourism, Slovenia