Destination Stewardship Report

Autumn 2021 October-December (Volume 2, Issue 2)

The Destination Stewardship Report is an e-quarterly collaboration between the Destination Stewardship Center and Global Sustainable Tourism Council. Our goal is to provide practical information and insights useful to anyone whose work or interests involve improving destination stewardship in a post-pandemic world. 

Please subscribe HERE if you have not done so already. For more information and participation contact us.  — Jonathan Tourtellot, Editor

Resurrected Matera, Italy Faces Overtourism

Inviting Hollywood into your home can backfire badly. Often, a roaring success on the screen, as with James Bond (played by Daniel Craig, left), may cause instant, irreversible collateral damage. Arild Molstad explores the too-much, too-fast story of Italy’s ancient town of Matera.

Once-Destitute Matera Grapples with Modernity, UNESCO, and James Bond

Until three years ago few but Italians had heard about this little town at the southern end of Italy’s scenic Apennines’ mountain range… READ MORE →

Achieving Collaboration in Västerbotten – A Swedish Tale

Once the Västerbotten regional tourism authority had developed its sustainable tourism initiative, it then faced the hurdle of how to get stakeholders on board. Annika Sandstrom, Region Tourism Chief, explains how they not only overcame this challenge, but also encouraged other destinations in the county to commit to better destination stewardship.

Västerbotten Brings Together Stakeholders to Highlight Nature and Culture

The county of Västerbotten, in Northern Sweden, extends from the Gulf of Bothnia west to the Norwegian border and comprises one eighth of Sweden’s total land area. The sprawling county, roughly the size of Denmark, offers «grand mountains, deep forests, mighty rivers, and … sea breezes,» according to Visit Sweden. READ MORE →

Two From India: Resilience and Governance

Contrasting Tourism Landscapes in Karnataka

The pandemic exposed the dangers of ‘tourism monocultures’ – dependence on one product only – versus a more holistic approach to tourism fare. Gayathri Hegde has been researching the differing tourism experiences of Dandeli and Joida, neighboring towns in Karnataka, southwestern India.

River Rafting Alone Does Not a Destination Make

The town of Dandeli, in the serene, verdant green forests of Western Ghats in northern Karnataka, has become synonymous with ‘adventure tourism’ in the region, popularized as the river-rafting destination of Southern India. READ MORE→

A Himalayan Village Takes Charge of Its Future

After witnessing unprecedented environmental damage, and despite pressure from tourism investors, the Indian village of Sharchi put regulations in place to limit unbridled growth in its attractive Himalayan valley. Aditi Chanchani and Sandeeep Minhas detail how the valley’s village councils are coming together to protect the region’s nature, culture, and its very future.

Strengthening Tourism Governance: First Step to Sustainability

In the northern state of Himachal Pradesh in the Kullu District, the Tirthan and Sainj valleys of the Himalayas adjoin the Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP). While this area has long been… READ MORE→

Vanuatu Tourism Gets a Reboot

The pandemic has caused massive disruption to the tourism industry around the world. But it has also created an opportunity for destinations to reboot the sector to move forward in a more thoughtful and sustainable way. Here, Geoff Hyde shares how Vanuatu is doing just that.

Living its Ni-Vanuatu Values: Vanuatu Plans for Resilience, Agritourism, and Cruise Reform

“I rely on volcano tours for my livelihood but I also want to protect my family and community from getting sick from Covid,” said a local guide at a recent tourism workshop in Ambrym, Vanuatu. Indeed, Vanuatu’s Department of Tourism (DoT), in conjunction with public health officials, has been conducting workshops around the country… READ MORE→

Two Winners from the Top 100

Every year, Green Destinations organizes the Top 100 Destination Sustainability Stories competition, which invites submissions from around the world – a vetted collection of stories spotlighting local and regional destinations that are making progress toward sustainable management of tourism and its impacts. From the 100 winners announced in October 2021, we’ve selected two stories from Tunisia and Germany that bring to light the important role that communities can play in destination stewardship and how community collaboration can provide inspiring examples of resilience.

Rural Tunisians Join to Initiate Restorative Tourism

Top 100 submission by Mohamed Hedi Kallali, Executive Director of The Authentic Tourism Federation Destination Dahar (FTADD)

In Dahar, Tunisia, Communities Collaborate to Revitalise a Dying Region

Tourism in Tunisia is usually concentrated on the coasts and Northern regions and is generally characterized as mass tourism. But not in the mountainous Dahar region of southeastern Tunisia— one of the most remote and untouched regions of the country… READ MORE→

Bringing Bad Grund Back to Life

Top 100 submission by by Nikolai Simon-Hallensleben, Project Mgr., Innenentwicklung der Bergstadt Bad Grund (Harz)

Community Collaboration in Bad Grund, Germany, Revives the Destination

Over the past few decades Bad Grund (Harz), a remote destination in the rugged Harz highlands of Lower Saxony, Germany, has been suffering from decreasing population levels. Officially recognised as a spa town since 1855, it lies in an open valley surrounded by… READ MORE→

The Glasgow Declaration

The Glasgow Declaration on Climate Action in Tourism is a global initiative launching on 4 November at COP26 in Glasgow, Scotland. The Glasgow Declaration aims to act as a catalyst for accelerating climate action in tourism. Organizations signing the Declaration commit to cutting tourism emissions by at least 50% over the next decade and achieving Net Zero as soon as possible before 2050. READ MORE→

Forum Reports

Tourism in a Climate Crisis

On September 28th and 29th, CREST partnered with Tourism Declares a Climate Emergency to host its fifth annual World Tourism Day Forum on the topic of “Tourism in a Climate Crisis: Taking Practical Action.” The virtual event focused on helping key sectors bridge the disconnect between the goals destinations, accommodations, and tour operators are told they must meet when it comes to mitigating the climate crisis, and the action steps needed to take.

New Community Platform

The Future of Tourism Coalition has opened its new «Signatory Community» forum. Access is limited to designated employees and volunteers of the 650 or so organizations, businesses, and governments that have so far signed on to the Coalition’s 13 Guiding Principles. … LEARN MORE →

For Your Information


Fennell, D. A. (2021) Routledge Handbook of Ecotourism. Routledge. “Presents a timely, broad-ranging, and provocative overview of the essential nature of ecotourism. The chapters will … provide challenging and divergent observations that will thrust ecotourism into new areas of research, policy, and practice.”

Duxbury, N. (2021) Creative Tourism: Activating Cultural Resources and Engaging Creative Travellers. CABI Publishing. “A synthesis of current research and international best practice in the emerging field of creative tourism. A vital resource for tourism agencies, practitioners, planners and policymakers interested in developing creative tourism programmes and activities, this book will also be of interest to cultural and creative tourism researchers, students, and teachers of tourism and culture-based development.”

Perez, P. (2021) The Tourism Area Life Cycle: Its Application to the Costa del Sol. Common Ground Research Networks. “Explores the impact of tourism on the aquatic resources of the Mediterranean tourist destination of the Spanish Costa del Sol. In doing so, this study applies “Tourism Area Life Cycle” theory [whereby] the tourist destination organically is born and evolves through life stages, analogous to a living organism, depending upon the scale of its sociopolitical, economic and environmental circumstances.”

Lusby, C. (2021) Destination Unknown: Sustainable Travel and Ethical Tourism. Common Ground Research Networks. “Discusses international tourism and the ways in which it brings us together. Contributions from expert authors around the world highlight both current issues in tourism, as well as ways it can be developed more ethically and equitably…. Creating spaces for encounters, protecting natural resources, volunteering ethically, traveling to discover one’s ethnic roots, vernacular design, cultural tourism and community involvement are all part of this meaningful discourse.”


Kunstler, J. H. (1994) Geography of Nowhere: The Rise and Decline of America’s Man Made Landscape. Simon & Schuster. “Tallies up the huge economic, social, and spiritual costs that America is paying for its car-crazed lifestyle. It is also a wake-up call for citizens to reinvent the places where we live and work, to build communities that are once again worthy of our affection…. ‘The future will require us to build better places,’ Kunstler says, ‘or the future will belong to other people in other societies.’”

Note: quotes are publisher blurbs

Destination Monitor

Notable news on stewardship developments around the world:

➢ DSC’s Destination Monitor and Travindy offer continuing selections of news stories.

Submission Requested

The Destination Stewardship Report relies entirely on submitted articles and notices, not to mention corrections and suggestions. All submissions must:
• pertain to some aspect of destination stewardship,
• be shorter than 1,000 words, and
• avoid self-promotion.
Photos welcome. What story can you tell that would help others?
Please contact us with your ideas. Your next issue is planned for January 2022.

 Volunteers needed

Tourism Cares can always use some help.

Sponsored by:

Editor – Jonathan B. Tourtellot
Assistant Editors – Harmony Lamm, Amber Smith
Illustrations Editor – Gabe Gerson
Editorial assistance – Cynthia Linnell, Michele Archie,Tiffany Chan, Martha Mulokoshi,
Ashley Lueders, Jane Slaughter, Siobhán Daly, Lucy Matthews, Tamara Olton
Newsletter design – Sarah Bacharach
Distribution – Tiffany Chan