ATTA’s Executive Director-Europe Chris Doyle and Western Balkans Tourism Team Leader Gergana Nikolova offer background about a precedent-setting collaboration by these three countries, which will be unveiled to buyers and media this fall in a new trans-border adventure travel itinerary during Europe’s first ATTA-organized AdventureWeek, 26 August through 3 September 2014.

You will hear and learn from local leaders in adventure travel about the cultural and natural uniqueness of the Western Balkans, with short briefings about Albania, Kosovo and Macedonia. Learn how these Western Balkans adventure travel destinations, suppliers and operators are joining forces to combine the best products and services to meet emerging traveler demands for compelling adventure tourism options in the region.

Learn more about this largely undiscovered region of Southeastern Europe, which the National Geographic Geotourism Mapguide project describes as follows:

"The Western Balkans encompasses Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia. A crossroads and a crucible, where empires met, fought and combined to form a kaleidoscope of cultures unique in Europe; where the Greeks, Romans, Slavs, Venetians, Turks and Austro-Hungarians each left their own indelible mark on the architecture, cuisine, languages, music and traditions of the region. Medieval Orthodox monasteries, Renaissance Catholic churches, mosques and minarets stand together within the same city walls. The aroma of local food from the bazaars testifies to the fusion of East and West, while the region’s eclectic music and dance celebrate this rich heritage.

Snow-capped mountains soar up from plunging river canyons, where wolves and bears still roam wild in deep forests, and stone fortresses stand guard over ancient pathways. Some of Europe’s last and rarest wildernesses are sheltered in this region.The Western Balkans presents a diverse menu of attractions for visitors: action-packed adventures or gentler hikes across contrasting topographies; Europe’s deepest lakes and the sun-soaked beaches of the Adriatic coastline, with exclusive resorts for the wealthy and famous; world-class fishing; lifestyles from a bygone age in rural areas, contrasting with the bustling night life in towns and cities; enthralling architecture and archaeology for the expert and amateur alike; and, everywhere, traditions, music and food, and the hospitality and warm friendliness that are so distinctively 'Balkan'."

Buyers & Media – Apply for AdventureWeek: 26 August – 3 September 2014

International outbound tour operator-buyers, specialty travel advisors and travel journalists – primarily from the USA, Canada and Western Europe – interested in becoming one of the 25 (total) hosted participants for AdventureWeek 23 August through 3 September 2014 (add 1-3 days travel time to/from the Western Balkans depending on your geographic origin), please apply here: adventuretravel.biz/connect/adventureweek/balkans/

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