Themed Trails of the Year in the Protected Areas in Austria
Elisabeth Kreimer, Anna Kovarovics, Daniel Zollner
Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management
Themed trails (adventure trails, sensory trails, interactive trails, learning trails, etc.) are valuable leisure facilities which combine the elements of education, spending time in nature and exercise. Themed trails are essential elements of the offering for visitors in many Austrian protected areas (national parks, nature parks, biosphere parks, Ramsar regions). In the context of this project, from 2012 to 2013 the best themed trails in these categories of protected area will be selected by E.C.O. and presented to a wider public as “themed trails of the year”. The documentation and evaluation will take place using a standardised catalogue of criteria, and will include questions about the professional implementation, technical production or visitor care and safety aspects. The project aims to increase the quality of the themed trails and will give the protected areas an opportunity of receiving a prize for their top offerings during a subsequent ceremonial event in Vienna.