Rural tourism in Kosovo and Montenegro are expected to be further developed thanks to the project “Revitalisation of local communities for development of tourism and youth”, financed by European Union, as part of the programme on Kosovo and Montenegro cross-border cooperation.

Both countries have unused natural resources, which are great potential for development of mountain and rural tourism, but the economic, social and environmental challenges are hampering development of this sector. While in Montenegro the tourism was developed in recent years, focusing mainly in marine tourism, in Kosovo according to data provided by Kosovo Statistical Agency, the mountain tourism marked slight increase from 2.42% in 2015, but the number of visitors yet remain low.

To improve the needed infrastructure and to promote the mountain and rural tourism, the municipality of Junik in Kosovo with its local partner MDA Foundation and the municipality of Andrijevica in Montenegro with its local partner Students Sports Association, will work together during 18 months of implementation of the project financed by EU.

The first group of activities will focus in improving the infrastructure, so that the old military base in Japan village in Andrijevica will be transformed in hostel for visitors. The Students Sports Association in Montenegro will manage the hostel. While in Moronica park in Junik, a multi-functional sport building will be built, as well as an area for outdoor recreational games and a traditional water mill “Valavica”. These touristic buildings will be well equipped and will have a comprehensive management plan.

 

The second part of activities will focus in youth empowerment in Junik and Andrijevica, through participation in “Cross-border Youth Summer Camp”. This camp will not serve only for a joint activity that empowers friendship amongst youngsters from cross-border areas, but will create opportunities for youngsters of two municipalities to gain experience from various activities where entertainment and entrepreneurship twin together. Such activities will enable youngsters to enjoy the beautiful mountains along Kosovo and Montenegro borders, while challenging them to be creative with their ideas to promote and support tourism development in their local communities.

The third and last part of activities aims to design and implement an awareness campaign on touristic values of rural and mountain areas in Junik and Andrijevica. Social media, articles in web portals, leaflets and electronic newsletters will be used to pass the message to the national and international tourists. In this regard, the first annual festival “Valavica Fest” will be organized in Junik, while in Andrijevica the youth team participating in the programme, will host different recreational activities.

Implementation of this project will start in February 2016.