Arctic Europe tourism cluster

The aim of the Arctic Europe Tourism Cluster (AETC) is to renew Arctic tourism to a more robust and regenerative tourism. The project seeks to meet future expectations for the benefit of the tourism industry, local communities and visitors in Arctic Europe. AECT brings together a number of tourism companies from Northern Norway, Northern Sweden and Northern Finland. Museum Nord is among these.

By gathering the tourism industry in Arctic areas, we achieve that we develop towards a common goal of tourism that is better for the individual company, but also better for the local communities and for the travellers.

The world is changing rapidly, and renewal of tourism is necessary due to changes in customer behavior and interests. There are also requirements for sustainability (ecological, economic and social), strong digital development and the need to develop more year-round business. In addition, there are challenges with staffing and the need to increase resilience to future changes.

Museum Nord is taking part in the project because through AECT we work towards several of our main goals: increased focus on sustainability through a more sustainable tourism. Focus on digitalization as a tool. Create interest in visiting our arenas, and acquire additional expertise in developing cultural activities that meet the traveler’s needs and wishes.

Bilde av mennesker på tur.
The project gathers ca 100 participating companies from the Arctic region of Norway, Sweden and Finland. Photo: Museum Nord
Key tasks

Among the specific measures that the project will implement are the following:

3 work packages:

1. Focus on renewing Arctic tourism to meet new customer needs by strengthening the role of Arctic culture in tourism and focusing on year-round business development (WP1).

Examples of activities: Product development with tour operators and cultural actors. Share best practice both globally and within the project area. Create contact with tour operators in sales workshops and visits to the area.

2. Develop sustainable forms of tourism by building trust-based networks to ensure sustainable management of local nature and cultural heritage and strengthen local communities and economies (WP2).

Examples of activities: Increase competence at company level and in networks through seminars, webinars and meetings. Create communication models that will emphasize/educate about the importance of tourism in local communities. Develop “Care for the Arctic” – code of conduct.

3. Develop a new innovative customer model for Arctic Europe based on new insights and link the model to new ways and knowledge about using digital technology in branding and marketing, also in collaboration with new partners (WP3)

Examples of activities: Testing innovative digital marketing. Develop digital competence. Understand future customer behaviour (future customer model). Building a brand around Arctic Europe.

Bilde av foredrag under AECT
Agnete Stensland fra NordNorsk Reiseliv presented us updated information on future customer models. Photo: Museum Nord
Predecessor “Visit Arctic europe”

In the previous Visit Arctic Europe projects (VAA 1 2015 – 2018, VAE2 2018-2022), the Arctic regions have succeeded in establishing the entire area as a travel destination. At the same time, participating companies took the first step towards becoming a “cluster” – a cluster of companies related to tourism, which have the destination as a common denominator. Now is the time to continue working on this foundation. The project AECT will ensure cooperation across borders, renew and create an even more sustainable tourism.

Key figures and facts Arctic Europe Tourism Cluster

Project period: 31.07.2023 – 31.07.2026.

Project budget: EUR 4.1 M. Participating companies in the project pay for their participation. The project is an Inter-reg-Aurora project

Lead partner: Finnish Lapland Tourist Board. The Norwegian project owner is Nord-Norsk Reiseliv as.

BIldet viser to fornøyde nettverksdeltakere
A good number of companies from Museum Nord region is particpating in the project. Among these are Visit Vesterålen, Visit Narvik and Destination Lofoten. In the photo; Head of Tourism, Destination Lofoten together with Museum Nord’s Communication manager Hege Anita Eilertsen. Photo: Museum Nord


How can culture become more important in tourism?

This network gathering had a special focus on culture as a possible tool to create better content and create better results for both us and the guests.