UNWTO names Best Tourism Villages 2022

32 villages in 18 countries bag rural tourism honour
/ New Delhi
UNWTO Network of Best Tourism Villages
UNWTO names Best Tourism Villages 2022

In 2022, a total of 32 villages from 18 countries spread across five world regions were awarded the recognition

The United Nations World Tourism Organisation has unveiled the list of Best Tourism Villages in the world in the year 2022, identifying 32 villages in 18 countries around the world.
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 The UNWTO has announced the winners of the Best Tourism Village award for the year 2022, honouring rural destinations that are embracing tourism as a driver of development and new opportunities for jobs and income, while preserving and promoting community-based values and products. The initiative also recognises villages for their commitment to innovation and sustainability in all its aspects, notably economic, social and environmental, and a focus on developing tourism in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

In 2022, a total of 32 villages from 18 countries spread across five world regions were awarded the recognition. The villages were evaluated by an independent Advisory Board based on a set of criteria covering nine areas such as cultural and natural resources, promotion and conservation of cultural resources and economic sustainability.

The award also recognises social sustainability, environmental sustainability, tourism development and value chain integration as well as governance and prioritisation of tourism, infrastructure and connectivity and health, safety, and security.

“For rural communities everywhere, tourism can be a true gamechanger in providing jobs, supporting local businesses and keeping traditions alive. The Best Tourism Villages by UNWTO showcase the power of the sector to drive economic diversification and create opportunities for all outside of big cities,” says UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili.

In a press statement, UNWTO says that a total of 136 villages were put forward for consideration by 57 UNWTO Member States and each Member State could nominate a maximum of three villages, for the 2022 edition. From these, 32 were recognised as Best Tourism Villages by UNWTO.

A further 20 villages will enter the Upgrade Programme. All 52 villages will also become part of the UNWTO Best Tourism Villages Global Network created in 2021 which from this date gathers 115 villages from the five continents. The Network provides a number of benefits including onsite and online training, sharing of good practices and international brand recognition and awareness.

The Best Tourism Villages initiative is the flagship project of the UNWTO Tourism for Rural Development Programme. The programme aims to ensure tourism contributes to reducing regional inequalities in income and development, fighting depopulation, progressing gender equality and women’s and youth empowerment, advancing innovation and digitalization, improving connectivity, infrastructure, access to finance and investment, innovating in product development and value chain integration, promoting sustainable practices for more efficient use of resources and a reduction of emissions and waste and enhancing education and skills. It also promotes multi-level governance and partnerships and the active involvement and empowerment of communities.

The award ceremony will take place in AlUla, Saudi Arabia on February 27-28, 2023 coinciding with the first presential meeting of the UNWTO Network of Best Tourism Villages.

List of Best Tourism Villages by UNWTO 2022:

  • Zell am See, Austria
  • Wagrain, Austria
  • Puqueldón, Chile
  • Dazhai, China
  • Jingzhu, China
  • Choachí, Colombia
  • Aguarico, Ecuador
  • Angochagua, Ecuador
  • Choke Mountains Ecovillage, Ethiopia
  • Mestia, Georgia
  • Kfar Kama, Israel
  • Sauris-Zahre, Italy
  • Isola del Giglio, Italy
  • Umm Qais, Jordan
  • Creel, Mexico
  • El Fuerte, Mexico
  • Ksar Elkhorbat, Morocco
  • Moulay Bouzerktoune, Morocco
  • Lamas, Peru
  • Raqchi, Peru
  • Castelo Novo, Portugal
  • Pyeongsa-ri, Republic of Korea
  • Rasinari, Romania
  • AlUla Old Town, Saudi Arabia
  • Bohinj, Slovenia
  • Rupit, Spain
  • Alquézar, Spain
  • Guadalupe, Spain
  • Murten, Switzerland
  • Andermatt, Switzerland
  • Birgi, Türkiye
  • Thái Hải, Vietnam
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