Green Tourism Scoping Research

There is a quickly growing market for green tourism in Europe (and across the globe). For example, in a survey of 32,000 travellers undertaken by in 2015, more than half (52%) reported that they are likely to choose a destination based on its social or environmental impact

Julie’s Bicycle has undertaken scoping research on green tourism initiatives across Europe and how Europe Jazz Network community might work within these or build their own to create co-benefits on environmental sustainability and audience development, partnerships, market growth, and artistic development in new geographic territories.
I. Existing Green Tourism Initiatives and Packages
Existing green tourism initiatives, such as kitemarks or organisers of green tourism experiences, offer an opportunity for co-promotions with jazz venues, concerts, and events. Examples include:
Green Tourism:
A not-for-profit certification programme for accommodation providers and attractions (things to do), currently listing over 2000 businesses in the UK and abroad that can be searched via a map and other criteria.
Green venues or festivals could explore being certified and listed as green tourist attractions (note there is a cost to membership). Venues or festivals could also look up certified accommodation providers in their area to explore co-promotions, and promoters could consider green attractions in their area as potential venues.
An example of a certified cultural attraction is the Ironbridge Gorge Museum, see how they frame their Green Tourism certification here.
Green Traveller:
A website featuring hundreds of eco-friendly places to stay and low-carbon holiday ideas that benefit biodiversity conservation and contribute to local community resilience and economies. It features locations that can be reached by public transport, train, bike, or ferry; including suggesting activities in the local area. Please note that this is a site originally aimed at travellers from the UK but features plenty of resources and guides for all European countries.

Their ‘Green Traveller Guides’ for different areas include information on restaurants offering organic food, etc; places to stay that have environmental policies; activities and local attractions. Jazz venues or festivals could explore being included as part of the Green Traveller Guides for their local areas if they are not already. Venues or festivals could also look up green accommodation and restaurants in their area to explore co-promotions and to point visiting musicians and audiences towards.
The website also contains a whole section on ‘Cultural Holidays’ that are provided by tour operators and travel agencies according to sustainability themes. EJN members should explore the potential for their venues and events to be included in these packages.
Rail Passes:
Interrail is a rail pass providing access to trains and ferries in up to 30 European countries from between 3 days to 3 months (depending on the pass chosen). Eurail is a similar scheme that is open to non-European residents.
The EJN could research and propose a travel itinerary based around some of its members’ venues or festivals that are reachable via train and advertise this to jazz fans as a European jazz adventure with rough costs of how much the travel would cost. This could also be distributed as a feature through jazz and other music press, e.g. Jazz in Europe.
Rail Travel Packages:
Great Rail Journeys is a travel agency specialising in rail holidays, both escorted by a tour manager and independent journeys. They offer packages based on special interests such as ‘The Musical Heritage of Austria and Germany,’ which include musical performances. One of their destination packages, rail tours to Montreux, already references the Montreux Jazz Festival.
Other travel operators offering rail tours through Europe include:
G Adventures:
Holidays by Rail:
The Europe Jazz Network could work with the tour operators to see where member venues or events could be included in travel packages, or even explore the possibility of creating a jazz themed journey package through Europe. 
Rail Discounts:
There are some existing examples of festivals or venues partnering with rail operators to offer discount tickets for longer journeys. For example, in the UK the NEC Group of venues has a partnership with Virgin Trains, offering customers a 25% discount on advance train tickets with any ticket purchased for an NEC venue or for shows at other venues purchased through the NEC-owned TheTicketFactory website.
Green Traveler Guides:
A green travel website that publishes specific geographic guides as well as thematic articles and guides. For example, ‘Europe’s 6 best ‘green’ classical music festivals in summer 2016’  or ‘Europe’s 8 best ‘eco’ classical music festivals this summer’. The criteria for inclusion appears to be focused more on the environmental setting of the events, with a focus on locations that are in parks or locations of natural beauty rather than a focus on environmental sustainability or whether the events (or event locations) have
environmental credentials – but others, such as ‘Honoring the greenest EU festivals , do look at the events’ own commitments to reduce their impact. The Europe Jazz Network could explore writing an article with the website to highlight the greenest venues or festivals for jazz in Europe.
Green Key:
A certification scheme and eco-label for hotels and other sites. EJN members could look up certified businesses in their area and explore co-promotions and other partnerships.
Bio Hotels:
An association of eco-friendly hotels in seven European countries, with a focus on sustainable food. They do not currently highlight cultural activities in the region, but EJN members could explore opportunities for co-promotions with hotels in their area.
II. Existing examples of music festivals and events tying in with green tourism and travel
Different music festivals and events have already explored various creative ways of tying together their activities and shows, tourism, and their geographic locations. Examples include:
Festivals and the Natural Environment:
Musica Sulle Bocche international jazz festival takes place in Sardinia on the Strait of Bonifacio, an internationally renowned area of beauty. Many of the concerts are held on the beach or other natural locations celebrating the local environment, and the festival also takes strong action on environmental sustainability together with the local municipality.
Bluedot music and science festival takes place at the Jodrell Bank Observatory in the UK, using the location as one of its main marketing points. Because of where it takes place and its themes, the festival also addresses its own sustainability and includes some programming on climate change themes.
Meadows in the Mountains festival in Bulgaria is themed around bringing people and music together in the beautiful setting of the Rhodopian Mountains, celebrating Bulgaria’s natural environment. As part of this ethos, the festival also takes steps to minimise its own environmental impact and inspire others to do the same.
Mandrea Music Festival takes place on the banks of Lake Garda in the foothills of the Italian alps. In addition to music, the festival also offers eco-tourism activities such as guided hiking tours and bicycle rentals. The festival has a commitment to environmental sustainability, including locally sourced and produced food.
Other festivals that highlight and celebrate their natural locations include the Traena Festival in Norway and the Southern Soul Festival in Montenegro.
Festivals and Historical Sites:
Electric Castle festival takes place at Banffy Castle in Cluj, Romania. The festival highlights the heritage of the site to its audiences, and part of the festival profits are donated to the Transylvania Trust and the Institute of Historic Building Conservation to support the upkeep and restoration of the castle. The festival also runs a sustainability programme ( ECO ), including organising bicycle groups from other European countries such as the Netherlands, UK, Denmark, and Austria – participants who cycle to the festival receive free or discounted tickets and other incentives.  /
Paradise City festival is hosted at the Castle of Ribaucourt (“Kasteel van Perk”), a 12th century castle outside Brussels. Celebrating the history of the setting, the festival is also built around principles of environmental sustainability, where every attendee becomes a ‘citizen of the future’.
Festivals and Sustainable Transport:
At the ZomerJazzFietsTour or SummerJazzCycleTour in the Netherlands, attendees cycle between around 5 to 6 concerts along several different cycle routes, choosing out of a total of 30 performances spread around different medieval churches and barns in the Reitdiep Valley. In this way the festival promotes cycling while simultaneously celebrating the local area and landmarks, encouraging audiences to go out and explore.
Melt! Festival in Germany offers attendees to book onto the MiXery Melt! Train to reach the festival site. DJ sets are held on the journey, and once at the festival site, the train carriages serve as accommodation for the weekend. In this way, sustainable travel is made part of the festival experience for those fortunate enough to get a place.
Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland runs the ‘Goldenpass Jazz Train’ – audiences go on a scenic train ride to different mountain destinations (e.g. Gstaad, Rochers-De-Naye) accompanied by live performances.
Festivals and Eco-Tourism:
The Sani Festival in Sani, Greece aims to ‘open up bridges of communication between tourism and the arts, between Greek and foreign tourists’. It is organised by the Sani Resort, a luxury hotel in an ecological reserve with a focus on sustainability and green tourism that also works on protecting the local forest and wetlands through partners.  /
Festivals and Partnerships:
The Manchester Jazz Festival in the UK has a partnership with local accommodation provider The Midland Hotel, which is registered with the Green Tourism Business Scheme.
III. Key Opportunities:
  • Partnerships with green accommodation providers, sustainable transport operators, local green businesses e.g. restaurants for:
    • Co-promotion of EJN member activities.
    • Audience/artist discounts
  • Partnerships with travel agencies and planners for:
    • Inclusion of EJN member venues and activities in eco-tourism and rail travel packages.
  • Creation of one or multiple suggested Interrail adventures/itineraries visiting various EJN member venues or events.
    • Articles or features such as ‘The best green jazz venues in Europe – and how to get between them by train’ could be developed.
    • Or an article or blog series from someone taking the train for a ‘summer of jazz’ to promote the concept.
  • Working with rail operators to organise permanent/regular jazz train performances on certain lines.
  • EJN members already located in environments of exceptional natural beauty should think about how they can tap into existing tourism and use this for their marketing/promotion – while addressing the environmental impact of their activities so as to protect the environment.
  • Creation of a multi-city; multi-venue green jazz festival holiday package with:
    • Concert venues or festivals working on environmental sustainability
    • Only green hotels
    • Transport for both artists and audiences scheduled via train, with some trains hosting performances
    • Recommendations for restaurants and cafes serving vegetarian or organic or locally sourced food.