"Discover South-east Serbia” is a title of a long-term project, which aims to bring better tourism development in south-east Serbia – from the Iron Gate in the north to the south of Ducat mountain.
South-east Serbia is not only lagging behind in terms of tourism sector development, but also in social-economic terms. In south-east Serbia there are 28 municipalities (61%) which have been marked as devastated by the government, with total population of 165000. These municipalities have a GDP per capita under the 60% than the average, and in most cases under 30% (Statistical Office 2010). Other municipalities in this region are generally classified as poorly developed. Long-term unemployment rate in South-east Serbia exceed 67% (Statistical Office 2010).
Tourism has, or can have a great importance to the economy of any region. However, in order to get all positive effects of tourism, it is necessary to manage its development in planned and organized manner.
The mentioned area has really great potential for tourism. Still, many of the attractions (except some of them – Kopaonik, Vrnjačka Spa, Stara Mountain in the near future…) do not have the strength and power to keep potential tourists more then a few days, and often no more then a few hours – such as some caves, museums, archeological sites, etc. Many natural and anthropogenic motives are promoted lonely, without any plan or long-term clear vision for tourism development. With this kind of approach, not only that it is not possible to keep the tourists stay longer, but also is extremely hard to attract them.
It is needed to meaningfully and professionally integrate all tourism attractions (potential and already activated), then all those individual stakeholders who participate in the creation of tourism destination offer, and all the others who are interested in tourism development. They need to be directed to cooperation and importance of synergy between them. This will be achieved by placing common goals toward, to which they will all aspire together, but which will also include their individual goals and interests. This will be a platform for creating a high quality destination offer of the entire area. It is essential that common goals are beyond individual, and that all are bounded for the achievement of common goals, for developing one unique tourism destination and its total integral offer, not dozens of partial and incomplete. It is necessary to establish an integrated tourism offer, which will be a reflection of entire destination, both – natural and anthropogenic tourism attractions, and also all others complementary products and services that have ability to meet certain travel needs of tourists. This tourism destination offer will be based on a careful and professional analysis of physical space, sustainable development and environmental protection.
Project „Discover South-east Serbia” besides the fact that it highlights the importance of partnerships and joint cooperation, emphasis the exceptional commitment to the area, and protecting, preserving, and improving the environment and cultural and historical heritage.
The project will engage, in addition to the staff, also numerous non-profit organizations, associations, educational institutions, etc.
Tourism Management and Consulting