In Italy, the past 20 years of tourism development has been characterised by strong plans followed by investments in areas already well established from a tourism market perspective. These areas have been able to generate a high demand for tourism, due to the presence of relevant resources, either in the form of their cultural features - especially cities of interest to art lovers with buildings of histotical significance - or natural characteristics - such as the climate, the sea and the mountains. In the course of time, certain destinations have consolidated their role as ltalian leaders in tourism. However, a selection of smaller inland destinations have recently started becoming the centre of development initiatives, which have given them visibility in the market. A more diversified tourism portfolio, both in terms of activities and of locations, has become the focus of their tourism strategies. These initiatives are aimed at enhancing the visibility of those 'non-traditional destinations' (see European Commission, 2002) rich in tourism potential. In this way, they are given the opportunity to become part of special itineraries based on identified conunon themes and be included in the wider tourist circuit. This type of tourism is considered as a valuable form of 'niche' tourism, aiming at the enhancement and promotion of territorial and cultura! values of certain less known regions and municipalities lagging behind others in terms of resources, organisation, market visibility and economie development. The need for implementing forms of tourism that involve not only the wellestablished coastal areas is strongly felt in the southern Italian region of Apulia. If on the one hand, this region is fairly well known for its seaside resorts, on the other hand there are numerous inland villages that could be enhanced through the use of their heritage. In relation to this, appropriate policies in line with sustainable tourism development and with the preservation of locai resources should be identified. Apulia has notable historical and architectural resources which could be viewed as elements around which to organise and better exploit forms of tourism involving towns of artistic interest, smaller centres and rural villages. The two cases examined in this chapter, namely the EU LEADER Initiative and the Grange Flags Project, reflect a search for alternative and innovative forms of tourism based on interesting historical and cultura) traditions.
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|Titolo:||Towards the tip oh the hill: discovering the hidden histories of Italy|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2005|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||2.1 Contributo in volume (Capitolo o Saggio)|