Top Slovenian athletes promote the image of Slovenia as a destination for active experiences

Published: 18.1.2021

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Top Slovenian athletes promote the image of Slovenia as a destination for active experiences

The Slovenian Tourist Board (STB) has entered a partnership agreement with professional Slovenian cyclist Tadej Pogačar, who has thus joined other Slovenian globally recognised athletes, such as Primož Roglič and Luka Dončić, in promoting Slovenia.

Top Slovenian athletes promote the image of Slovenia as a destination for active experiences

The STB enters 2021 with strengthening the participation at major sporting events hosted by Slovenia. A virtual press conference was held today, with active break being presented as one of the key tourist products of Slovenian tourism. Top Slovenian athletes, especially cyclists, were highlighted in promoting Slovenia as a destination for great active experiences.

The press conference was attended by Tadej Pogačar, a top Slovenian cyclist and winner of the 2020 Tour de France; MSc. Maja Pak, director of the STB; Bogdan Fink, the organising director of the Tour of Slovenia cycling race and the director of Cycling club Adria Mobil, and Marko Lenarčič, director of the Slovenia Outdoor Association.

The STB is aware that internationally recognised high profile sporting events and top athletes have a great potential in promoting Slovenia and its tourist offer, which is why promotional and developmental activities for the active experiences product are being streghtened.

MSc. Maja Pak, Director of the Slovenian Tourist Board, pointed out on this occasion: “The Slovenian Tourist Board works with top Slovenian athletes, who with their achievements, enthusiasm and heart impress millions of sports enthusiasts and active individuals from around the world. We are convinced that they will help us promote Slovenia as a destination for active holidays and share the values ​​of the I feel Slovenia brand. I am glad that this year, our partnership story with renowned Slovenian athletes has been upgraded with Tadej Pogačar, who will help us address fans of active holidays around the world and at home.” Pak went on, adding: "Cycling is certainly directly connected or better said part of our ‘ outdoor’ tourism segment, which is one of the most important tourist products in Slovenia. When travel will again be possible, this segment will play a major role. In addition to partnerships with recognised Slovenian athletes, we also actively promote Slovenia at high-profile sporting events. In the last three years, we have participated in the Tour of Slovenia and, together with our partners, enabled the race to be broadcast on Eurosport, meaning that the beauty of Slovenia was shown to more than 30 million spectators. We also promoted Slovenia as an excellent cycling destination during the Tour de France, participated in the I FEEL SLOVENIA virtual cycling race across Slovenia and at other most important sporting events in Slovenia. I am sure that Tadej Pogačar, Primož Roglič, Luka Dončić and other top athletes will once again impress millions of sports fans and influential media around the world and present Slovenia as a destination for healthy and active experiences, perfect for sports preparation camps and high-profile international sporting events. Since active holidays and sports achievements of Slovenia have major potential, we are announcing that the promotional theme in 2022 and 2023 will be active holidays or outdoor and sports tourism."

With entering the parthership with the Slovenian Tourist Board, top Slovenian cyclist Tadej Pogačar has become the ambassador of Slovenian tourism. The STB has defined a set of promotional activities with him: "The message of "I feel Slovenia" is very positive, I liked it already when I was a child. Whenever I see banners and posters with "I feel Slovenia" sign, be it at a race or just on a walk, it reminds me of my homeland. We have a beautiful country and it is right for others to get to know it,” said Tadej Pogačar, winner of the Tour de France, and added: "Partnership with the Slovenian Tourist Board immediately fell on fertile ground, as I would like to be actively engaged in promoting Slovenia around the world. I am happy that I can also contribute a stone to this mosaic to tell people about Slovenia and show them how beautiful Slovenia really is."

The STB has participated in sporting events for many years, and this will continue also in the following years, with activities being strengthened and improved. A new public call for partnerships at major international sporting events was published recently, with the goal to expose Slovenia more intensively, and to implement the I Feel Slovenia brand. Today, when the organisation of sporting events is not possible or is often restricted, the STB participates in the so-called virtual cycling sporting events, such as the virtual Tour of Slovenia, the I Feel Slovenia virtual cycling race, Tour of Slovenia. A joint press conference of the STB and the representatives of regional destination organisations, Friuli Venezia Giulia and the Austrian Carinthia for the Alpe Adria area, is planned for February, when  in developmental and promotional partnership projects for active experiences in Slovenia, Austria, and Italy will be presented.

The segment of active outdoor holidays, together with mountain holidays, is one of the most competitive tourism products in Europe. It has a significant impact on the image of Slovenia as a sustainable destination, and connect well with the sports tourism product. It, furthermore, ensures safe, sustainable, and attractive experiences for the visitors. The product is one of the main tourism products for which the STB has provided many promotional and marketing activities. The development of the active leisure offer in Slovenia will continue to be based on boutiqueness, uniqueness, authenticity, and the unspoiled nature, which allows a non-mass development of the product.

The active leisure product has a high potential for further growth; research has shown that it is one of the most distinct trends in travelling for 2021.

A survey assessing domestic guest potential, which was carried out among travelling Slovenians, has even shown that active leisure is one of the most important motives for travelling. Those that spend their holidays in Slovenia, 36% engage in recreational activities, 35% in sporting activities, while 18% list active free time as the top 10 travelling motives.

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