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Activities

 

Tourism activities in European Union countries range from big holiday parks with all kind of activities to simple rural tourism businesses.

The seasonal load of activities varies greatly, with occupancy rates reaching their peaks in the seasons when the surrounding territory gives the best attractions.

The seasons of rural tourism activities like walking, cycling, horse riding etc. are spring, summer and autumn. Winter sports like cross-country skiing, skating, snow-shoeing, sledging etc. are more high-winter activities. The winter sports are very well described in the EU Leonardo da Vinci AURORA project modules (see www.auroranet.info).

This module focuses instead on activities typical of the other seasons, that can be offered to tourists staying in rural accommodations to make their stay more interesting and pleasant.

Offering activities is important to make the business more competitive. There is competition between different rural destinations. If the environment and the surrounding scenery is important, offering a rich variety of possible activities can make a difference too.

 

There is also competition between different kinds of destination in the same region, for example,  rural and urban destination. Tourists sometimes see in the rural accommodation just a cheaper starting point to explore nearby attractions, such ad cities of historical, cultural, or artistic interest.

Offering interesting things to do is a way to make the tourist stay and increase the profitability of the rural tourism business.

 

The module is made of six chapters, dealing with walking, cycling, horse riding, entertainment, outdoor cooking, and basic principles of tour guiding.

 

The first five sections are aimed both at entrepreneurs who would like to offer directly some kind of activity, and to people who are interested in creating a business consisting in offering activities to tourists staying in rural tourism facilities in the surrounding area. For example, the module walking gives instructions about how to organize a hike. The manager of a rural tourism facility could then use those instructions to learn how to organize hiking tours and offer them directly to his or her guests. Or, someone not working in an accommodation firm could get the idea to start a company whose aim is to offer hiking tours to tourists staying in the nearby rural accommodation facilities.

 

A short introduction to tour guiding has also been included in this module, because many activities involve guiding groups.