A newly refurbished and renovated visitor centre in Llogara National Park today opens its doors for the tourists and nature lovers. The investment of European Union through its project NaturAL - Strengthening National capacity in Nature Protection preparation for Natura 2000 network - has transformed the Visitor Centre into an innovative point of reference providing comprehensive information on the natural ecosystem as well as its management, through the work of the Park administration.
The inauguration ceremony gathered the Head of Delegation of the European Union to Albania, Ambassador Luigi Soreca, Minister of Tourism and Environment Mr. Blendi Klosi, high official representatives from the Agency of Italian Development Cooperation, NAPA, Vlora Municipality, donor community, civil society and media, to emphasize the importance of nature-based tourism in supporting both nature conservation and sustainable development of the region.
“This investment is part of the EU efforts to promote sustainable and nature-based tourism in Albania”, stressed Ambassador Soreca. “Spectacular investment in Llogara National Park, a new centre with European standards for tourists”, said Minister Klosi while expressing his gratitude to the EU.
The Visitor Centre is designed to be an environmental education hub, targeting not only environmental experts and practitioners but also the local schools, providing visitors with a holistic view of the entire protected area. The environmental importance of the park is described through graphical panels and tri-dimensional models, focusing on the forest and pastures systems, characteristic for the area. “House of the Bee” is an external exhibition on the ecological importance of pollination.
The Centre will also serve to strengthen the collaboration between the Park and the local community by promoting the local culture, products and tradition.
During the last years, the Project has supported NAPA in undertaking important steps to improve the conservation of Albania’s natural heritage, liaising with the Regional Administrations for Protected Areas and relevant NGOs at national and international level. Llogora National Park is one of the 10 Protected Areas where the Project funds have been invested with that purpose. The overall support of NaturAL project to RAPA Vlore (including investments in infrastructures, vehicles, tools and equipment, training and capacity building, awareness raising and community support) amounts to about 300,000.00 EUR.
To see photos from the event go to the Gallery.
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