Silk Roads Heritage Corridors Tourism Strategy Workshop
Acclaimed as the ‘greatest route in the history of mankind’, the ancient Silk Road formed the first bridge between the East and the West and was an important vehicle for trade between the ancient empires of China, Central and Western Asia, the Indian sub-continent, and Rome. The Silk Road was more than just trade routes; it symbolized the multiple benefits arising from cultural exchange. As a result, countless historic and cultural sites remain along the network of famous routes.
Today these routes or ‘heritage corridors’ have the potential to offer economic benefits to local communities and cross-cultural exchange through tourism development.
In recent years a team of experts at UNESCO, ICOMOS and UCL, have conducted ground-breaking research into the Silk Road’s sites and routes as part of the transnational Silk Roads World Heritage Serial Nomination project. This project has involved unprecedented collaboration between 15 State Parties. Moreover, two World Heritage Nominations for the Silk Roads Heritage Corridor in Central Asia and China have been submitted to UNESCO which will commence the final evaluation of the nominations in 2013-2014.
UNESCO and UNWTO, supported by the UNESCO/Netherlands Funds-in-Trust, is launching a major project in 2013 that will provide policy guidance to the destinations and will develop a common sustainable tourism strategy for visitor management, site presentation and promotion along these heritage corridors. The first milestone in this process will be a Strategy Workshop that will take place in Almaty, Kazakhstan from 7 to 8 October 2013. This workshop aims at developing a common tourism planning and management strategy for the Silk Roads Heritage Corridor in Central Asia and China. The workshop is generously hosted by the Ministry of Industry and New Technologies of the Republic of Kazakhstan and will bring together professionals from heritage management and tourism sectors from the five participating countries (China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan), as well as a number of international experts specialized in the Silk Road.