Activities concerning tourism
The Euroregion Silesia started to participate in the tourist business soon after its establishment with the intention to promote the area, to increase tourists' interest in this border area, and to support development of cross-border tourism.
In 2001 - 2005 the Euroregion Silesia took charge of coordinating presentation of its area at tourism fairs. In association with the Moravian-Silesian Region it took part in organisation and funding of presentation of its area at international tourism fairs. The mutual Czech-Polish exposition presented at these fairs was one way of advertising that borders were becoming less important.Once the Czech part of the Euroregion Silesia had experienced the benefits of cross-border tourism, it became a consultative body for tourism in the Moravian-Silesian Region in 2003-2006.
In 2004 - 2006 the Euroregion Silesia and Racibórz District participated in an international project called "Tour.com". The project, which was financed by the European Union via Initiative INTERREG IIIC (interregional cooperation) and whose participants came from the Czech Republic, Poland, Germany and France, focused on tourism in European border regions. At the 4th international meeting held on 25 - 29 April 2006 in Racibórz and Opava, topics concerning tourist information centres, congress tourism, destination management, military sights, and cross-border cooperation in tourism were discussed.
In 2005 the Czech part of the Euroregion Silesia joined ten other partners from six European countries to participate in an international project called "E-learning Tools in Destination Management" funded by the Leonardo da Vinci programme. The aim of the project was to prepare and to launch a new educational programme for tourism intended on one hand for public administration employees dealing with tourism, and on the other hand for small and medium-sized businesses dealing with tourism.
Since the area of the Euroregion Silesia can be proud of a large amount of castles and palaces, in 2002 a booklet called "Castles and Palaces of the Euroregion Silesia" was published.
"...The subject matter of this publication is then the common heritage of this beautiful and very original corner of Europe where the three cultures and languages (Polish, Czech and German) cross, which cannot be missed, especially if we keep in mind the unification of Europe." (extract from a preface of the booklet).
Many projects concerning tourism in the area of the Euroregion Silesia were executed thanks to funding provided by the European Union from the "Small Project Funds", integral parts of the Czech-Polish cross-border cooperation programmes which are managed by the Euroregions.
The so-called "Joint Small Project Fund" within CZ-PL Phare CBC programme helped to finance preparations for a project of border-area cycle track No. 55. Six partners of the municipalities at the Czech part of the Euroregion Silesia lead by the city of Opava signed a cooperation agreement in 2002 to prepare and build a new cycle track forming a part of the 160 km long "Silesian Cycle Lane". The representatives of the Euroregion Silesia were given a chance to present the safe, well-done, and attractive cycle lane in Silesia alongside the Polish border at accompanying events in the framework of the European Week of Regions and Cities OPEN DAYS 2006 in Brussels. More details about this project can be found here.
Various common promotional material of the Czech-Polish border-area offered to tourists is another example of cross-border tourist business in the area of the Euroregion Silesia. For example, a set of leaflets created for a common project of Opava and Racibórz called "From Arboretum to Arboretum" describes tourist attractions in the area between the arboretums in Nový Dvůr near Opava (CZ) and in Racibórz (PL). A common tourist guide including the maps of hiking trails and cycle tracks called "Walking and Cycling within the Opava and Racibórz areas" could be also mentioned.
Thanks to activities of municipalities and districts in the Euroregion Silesia promoting tourism, there are many tourist products whose aim is to prove that the respective area - previously overlooked - has in time become an attractive tourist destination. The task of the Euroregion Silesia is to offer such products and to attract not only domestic tourists but also tourists from abroad.