The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC), which sets global standards for sustainable travel and tourism and manages the implementation of these standards, will organise The Sustainable Tourism Conference in Türkiye this year, which takes place in different countries annually. The annual global conference – the signature event of GSTC – brings together tourism stakeholders involved in the development and promotion of sustainable travel and tourism to Antalya, the tourism paradise of the Mediterranean, between 9-12 May 2023.
The Global Sustainable Tourism Council, the world’s top environmental and sustainability organisation, regulates, updates and manages the global standards created to ensure sustainability in travel and tourism, known as the GSTC Criteria. The independent non-profit organisation aims to create a shared understanding of sustainable tourism with these criteria.
GSTC also organises conferences with global leaders to discuss critical topical issues in sustainable tourism. The Sustainable Tourism Conference, organised annually by the organisation in a different city each year, aims to bring together tourism stakeholders to exchange ideas and thus expand the applicability of the standards set for sustainable tourism.
The conference series held online for two consecutive years due to the pandemic, took place in Seville, Spain, last year. At the 2022 GSTC Sustainable Tourism Conference, in which Türkiye also participated, it was announced that the 2023 edition would be held in Antalya after the candidacy process carried out by the Turkish Tourism Promotion and Development Agency (TGA). Antalya’s hosting was introduced with a video specially prepared for participants, and a panel on the Turkish National Sustainable Tourism Program was organised at the conference.
Türkiye sets an example for the world in the field of sustainable tourism.
With the cooperation agreement signed with GSTC at the beginning of 2022, Türkiye determined the country’s road map to be followed in sustainable tourism and accelerated its global sustainability practices. With this three-year protocol, the National Sustainable Tourism Program was established to restructure the tourism industry of Türkiye, which is the first country to agree with the government on sustainable tourism.
The Program, which includes destinations, tour operators, and especially accommodation facilities, aims for sustainable transformation in Türkiye’s tourism industry. Carried out in stages, the first phase of the Program will be completed this year; the second phase will be completed in 2025, and the third phase will be completed in 2030, with all international standards met.
The GSTC 2023 Global Sustainable Tourism Conference will host more than 350 local and foreign participants in Antalya, including representatives from the public sector, hotels, tour operators, companies, academia, development agencies, online travel agencies and non-governmental organisations. The four-day conference program includes training, interactive panels and workshops, meetings and social events. Participants will have the opportunity to benefit from the practical experience of experts in developing and promoting sustainable tourism while enjoying a chance to discover Antalya, Türkiye’s travel paradise.
Located in the south of Türkiye, in the heart of the Mediterranean and the Turkish Riviera, Antalya is described as the “capital of tourism” due to its natural beauty, sea, historical texture and cultural structure. The city welcomes thousands of tourists annually and stands out with adventure, culture-art and entertainment options in addition to the “sea-sand-sun” trilogy.