The project "Sauerland. Inspiration"

The point is...

After the hiking infrastructure culture in the Sauerland hiking villages (first quality region Wanderbares Deutschland) is already on a high level, the Sauerland project is about to start. Inspiration. -Neue Erlebnis- und Begegnungsräume für die Sauerland Wanderdörfer" (New Experience and Meeting Spaces for the Sauerland Hiking Villages) is now about further strengthening the villages and businesses on a content-related level.

On the basis of the ideas developed by the project "Wege zum Leben. In Südwestfalen" (WZL) 2014/15, the project therefore takes up the increasingly important needs of hikers for reduction, encounter and inspiration as well as people's search for meaning and spiritual experience and develops new offers for this in the Sauerland Hiking Villages (SWD) and for the Sauerland Hiking Inns (SWG) and other SMEs. For this

purpose, spiritual or powerful places with a special charisma (views, places at springs, on the edge of the landscape, in chapels, churches and mosques) are identified. A meta-story also puts the SWD in a new light and innovative products complement the existing tourist offers. The basis of this work is a diverse network firmly anchored in the region.

The aim is to provide practical support to tourism service providers and local tourism partners - especially in the SME sector - in this process. The main benefit for the SMEs is that - at low investment costs - the year-round offer is strengthened and new visitor groups are developed in an attractive guest segment

This project is funded by

Detailed description

Sauerland. Inspiration.

1. Project goals

The SMEs and the tourism partners in the SWD area become part of an innovative process and network to become a trend topic and can - at low investment costs - reposition themselves and develop further. As a result, at the end of the project they will have

  • about new offers and products that satisfy the demand for topics such as reduction, mindfulness, pausing, search for meaning, encounter, inspiration and "temporary home"
  • which above all provides the guests with spaces of experience of vastness and silence. The focus is on low-threshold and sensual approaches.
  • via accesses to "spiritual and powerful" places in their region, which, according to the quality criteria of the network "Wege zum Leben identified and evaluated
  • a "meta-story" that brings out the unmistakable "essence" of SWD.
  • about a new aesthetics, visual language and language
  • about first print and digital products

The SMEs and the small villages in the SWD area are thus developing an external effect that opens up new visitor groups for them, especially from the affluent guest segment of the "active and down-to-earth best agers" and "adult couples"

2. Work schedule: (milestones/intermediate goals/activities)

Start: Determination of the further procedure with representatives of SWD and SWG
Task and time schedule
Staffing of expert workshops

Module 1: Deepening and expanding existing networks

  • Information event on the objectives and approach of the project
  • Information event(s) at local level on interim results
  • Transfer event at the end of the project

Module 2: Identification of powerful places in nature and villages in the SWD and SWG area

  • Expert workshop to work out the further procedure with external experts and representatives of SWD, SWG and the network Wege zum Leben (Churches, Culture etc.). Selection of the first 5 villages within the SWD in which one or more powerful places are to be identified Concept for further work at the local level, draft of a data entry form
  • Subsequently, 1-2 workshops with actors from each of the five selected villages, including inspection, documentation of the data, special features and stories about the places, first collection of ideas for indexing (local level) Descriptions and potential analysis for the first identified places. Interim report on the experiences in the 7 villages, if necessary changes in the procedure, selection of the next villages
  • 1-2 workshops with actors from each of the selected villages including an inspection. Documentation of data, special features and stories of 1 to 3 villages, first collection of ideas for development (village level). Descriptions and potential analysis for the identified places. Interim report from the experiences in the villages, if necessary changes in the procedure, selection of the next places
  • etc. up to 35 (5 per hiking village) powerful and spiritual places have been identified and evaluated
  • Expert workshop on a first concept for the presentation of the identified locations on a map and for the creation of print and digital products (booklets etc.)
  • Information events to communicate the results to hosts and tourism professionals in the respective municipalities or in a joint event

Module 3: Development of a meta-story for the SWD

  • Introductory event with input from a service provider on the meaning and direction of a meta-story with the SWDs (if applicable SWG and actors of the network Wege zum Leben als Gäste)
  • Expert workshop (external experts, representatives of SWD, SWG and the network Wege zum Leben (Churches, Culture etc.) to develop the metastory. Creation of a requirement profile for the meta-story as a basis for the tendering of the necessary agency services and a concept for the further procedure.
  • Expert workshop with the selected service provider to integrate the results and experiences with the work on the powerful and spiritual places (see module 2) into the process of the meta-story
  • First draft text Meta-Story
  • Expert workshop to coordinate the draft text

Module 4: Development of tourism offers and products

  • Expert Workshop with external experts and representatives of SWD, SWG and the network Wege zum Leben (Churches, Culture etc.). Guide for the preparation of offers for local tourism professionals and hosts.
  • Workshops for practical implementation at local level. List of new offers and products.

Module 5: Communication of the concept internally and externally

  • Marketing concept, among other things, for the presentation of the identified locations on a map and for the creation of print and digital products (booklets etc.)
  • Further development of the visual and verbal language for the topics of an authentic, spiritually motivated hiking tourism in the region

Module 6: Quality development, quality enhancement, quality assurance, seal

  • Evaluation of the places, offers and products on the basis of the quality criteria developed within the framework of the project "Ways to live
  • Creation of a quality concept
  • First considerations for the creation of a quality seal

3. Durability of the results obtained

The implementation of spiritually motivated hiking tourism in the SWD and SWG has a lasting effect on the region and links economic, ecological and social goals: The SMEs in the region are made competitive and are thus economically successful even under the new market conditions. At the same time, a core concern of the project is to bring people together and to bring them into conversation with each other under the aspect of "encounter". To this end, it creates, among other things, new and unusual opportunities for encounters and communication. By including the spiritual traditions of all world religions in the conception of the offers, the concept promotes intercultural encounters. The natural resources on site are used without major interventions in the ecological systems and are constantly being revalued. Guests and actors are sensitised to their need for protection