Agrotourism is emerging at the right moment to cover the need of tired city-dwellers for a closer contact with nature, as well as with things and experiences long-forgotten, such as bread baking and traditional pastry-making, loom weaving, horse-back riding, a stroll in the forest, life at a tranquil pace.
Agrotourism started with the sole aim to improve the life of farmers especially in mountainous regions and in areas with a developing economy. Incentives provided with agrotourism have been successful in keeping the residents of such regions at home, therefore preventing depopulation of the countryside and at the same time the architectural heritage is preserved through the renovation of buildings, the regional cultural heritage is promoted, while the income of farmers is supplemented and improved.
It brings growth to local communities, assisting their economies to flourish and prosper, it facilitates the production of traditional products that would otherwise possibly vanish, mainly traditional products such as fruit preserves and jams, embroidery, the cultivation of aromatic herbs and pasta. It assists in the preservation of crafts that would otherwise perish with the last artisan, preserves human memory through the revival of customs and traditional festivities, offers a communication channel between regions isolated from the large population centres and provides life-long opportunities to local youth.
In Greece, a growing number of people are occupied with agrotourist activities; the number of traditional lodgings is continuously increasing and the country is rapidly becoming a top year-round agrotourism destination. Numerous villages throughout the country offer a “holistic retreat” style of accommodation complete with organic gardens, bird sanctuaries and traditional “tavernas” serving their own home-grown produce.
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