Rural Lifestyle

Creating attractive rural lifestyle destinations

P2 Sustainable use of common resources

2.1. Natural and cultural resources developed into sustainable tourist attractions

Central Baltic

01.06.2020 - 31.12.2022

€1 132 638

€917 249

Project Summary:

There is a clear market demand for attractive tourism destinations that can respond to the latest travel trends: authentic lifestyle and sustainability. This provides the Central Baltic region with the opportunity to develop its rural tourism potential. The region can count on several traditional activities related to authentic rural lifestyle. These activities have the potential to attract tourists by offering them the opportunity to immerse themselves into the local everyday life. These activities entail voluntary work camps, hands-on handicraft and cooking workshops, farming, berry and mushroom picking, fishing, home visits, pop-up cafes and other cultural events.
To better market this regional potential, a cluster of Rural Lifestyle (RL) destinations (Söderhamn, Sweden; Aland & Lohja, Finland; Estonia; Latvia) will be established. The cluster will attract travel agencies and tourists from Asia and Europe to enable local tour operators to approach their overseas counterparts with variety of activities and tour packages.
The network of “RL Destinations" established by the project will be enabled and further expanded during and after the project lifecycle.

Lead Partner

Eesti Maaülikool

Country: EE

Partner budget: 261.770 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 222.505 EUR ERDF

Project Partners

Helsingin yliopisto Ruralia-instituutti

Country: FI

Partner budget: 129.455 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 97.091 EUR ERDF

Lohjan kaupunki

Country: FI

Partner budget: 114.339 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 85.754 EUR ERDF

Företagsam Skärgård r.f.

Country: FI

Partner budget: 103.163 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 77.372 EUR ERDF

Söderhamns kommun

Country: SE

Partner budget: 107.977 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 80.982 EUR ERDF

Eesti Maaturism

Country: EE

Partner budget: 130.260 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 110.721 EUR ERDF

Gaujas Nacionālā parka tūrisma biedrība

Country: LV

Partner budget: 80.507 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 68.431 EUR ERDF

Latvijas lauku tūrisma asociācija “Lauku ceļotājs”

Country: LV

Partner budget: 205.167 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 174.392 EUR ERDF

Achieved results

Project result in category -
Joint tourist attraction

Rural lifestyle project was creating attractive rural lifestyle destinations

New attractive and sustainable Rural Lifestyle tourism product was developed – destinations around the Baltic Sea (Estonia – Setomaa historic region, Vana-Võromaa historic region, Mulgimaa historic region, Onion Route – the shores of Lake Peipsi, Soomaa National Park, Lahemaa National Park; Latvia – Abava river valley, Sēlija, North Vidzeme, Gauja National Park; Sweden – Söderhamn; Finland –Åland, Archipelago of Kökar in Åland, Brändö island in Åland, Lappo island in Åland, Jurmo island in Åland, Lohja), altogether 39 new products. The project partnership developed a joint Rural Lifestyle destination and a new brand GORURAL which is very attractive in foreign and domestic tourism markets. First 39 RL products and more than six smaller destinations are promoted via the RL website, printed and digital marketing materials.

Regarding the increase in the number of visitors, the target value was 3000 visitors. Due to the different sizes of the regions and other conditions, each pilot region analysed the increased number of visitors as a result of the project according to its own methodology. The project reached and exceeded the set target value with 6555 new RL foreign visitors, and added 83850 domestic visitors.


Project page in database
At a glance
  • a joint Rural Lifestyle destination and a new brand GORURAL were developed
  • to attract new foreign and domestic tourists
  • 39 Rural Lifestyle products and more than six smaller destinations are promoted via different channels

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