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Swedish nature tourism in the top for foreign tourists

Sweden in second place, just after Norway, when potential visitors spontaneously think of countries that offer sustainable nature experiences. This is the result in a survey among the target group commissioned by Visit Sweden in the most important visitor markets Germany, France, the UK and the USA.

The second place is an improvement from a fourth place in 2018. This is a result of four years of continuous and targeted efforts for sustainable natural tourism, which Visit Sweden has implemented together with, among other things, the Swedish Growth Agency, the Natural Tourism Companies, regional tourism organizations, destinations and entrepreneurs.

The long-standing collaboration with the hospitality industry has resulted in, among other things, notable campaigns such as Sweden on Airbnb, The 72 Hour Cabin and The Edible Country, all of which have had a major international impact. In addition, the annually recurring initiative “Forum for Nature Tourism” and the host of the World Congress for Nature Tourism – Adventure Travel World Summit in Gothenburg 2019, has contributed to the improved position.

Already in 2018, Visit Sweden found that the number of online searches for Sweden in combination with keywords about nature increased by as much as 28 percent between 2017 and 2018; the average in Europe was 11 percent. But it is only now in 2020 that a change in position, No. 2 in the world, can be seen.

– I am extremely proud that we have achieved the goal we set in 2016 – namely that we are one of the most associated countries in the world for our travelers when it comes to natural tourism in our focus markets. This shows that long-term and methodical collaboration work yields results, says Jenny Jonevret, program owner for Sustainable Nature Tourism at Visit Sweden.

This year’s survey indicates that, unlike in the past, the target group is not only looking for nature experiences but has the ambition to choose suppliers and destinations that prioritize sustainability.

– Right in these extraordinary times with Covid-19, which has made the need for social distance great, there are many signs that even more people in the world will demand travel linked to nature. The fact that in this situation has succeeded in consolidating Sweden as a sustainable nature destination is incredibly important for the tourism industry when foreign tourists can, get and want to travel again. Sustainable natural tourism, we will of course continue to work with, says Jenny Jonevret.

Photo: Clive Tompsett
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