Estonian-Latvian joint project to promote military heritage tourism
At the beginning of 2020 Estonian-Latvian cross-bordor cooperation programm approved international project Military Heritage
Military heritage tourism is popular in Europe where a number of famous military heritage objects attract millions of tourists. Latvia and Estonia have a very good potential for a joint military heritage tourism product. There is rich military heritage as both countries have been caught up in the same geopolitical processes – establishing their statehood on the background of World War I, experiencing the changes of occupation powers during World War II, maintaining national partisan movement to resist Soviet occupation after World War II, and arriving at restoration of independence along with the collapse of the Soviet Union.
From 1 January 2020 to 31 December 2022 Estonian War Museum – General Laidoner Museum participates in a project financed by Interreg Estonian-Latvian program to organise and pack the variety of military heritage objects in Latvia and Estonia into one homogeneous tourism product and promote it under a single cross-border tourism product concept to provide attractive and contemporary tourist experience and attract more tourists to the region. Leading partner of the Project is Latvian Country Tourism Association "Lauku Celotajs". Alltogether there are 24 partners.
The project involves following activities:
- product and network development workshops and national events in Latvia and Estonia to inform and involve stakeholders and form the military heritage tourism product network;
- on-site visits to military heritage objects and nearby tourist services to collect information for product description, to meet and involve local stakeholders, and to collect historical information for (historical documents, memories of people, photos, maps etc.);
- developing a guideline for integration of military heritage objects in tourism products;
- selecting the objects to be included in Military Heritage tourism product marketing activities;
- developing Military Heritage product visual identity and marking objects with information plates bearing the common visual identity;
- making site improvements in military heritage objects;
- developing a common marketing platform with full product information and link to partner websites;
- developing printed marketing publications: Military Heritage product guide and Tourist Brochure;
- promoting the product to travel industry and potential tourists.
At the end of the Project there will be a marketing event to introduce the results to the public.
Project enables the Estonian War Museum to rearrange armoured train No 7 Wabadus
into permanent exhibition as well as make improvements at several military heritage sites.
The budget of the project is 1 928 992.39 euros, of which 180 680 belongs to the War Museum.
Project coordinator of the War Museum is Anu Viltrop, anu.viltrop(a)esm.ee.