Paphos and the Spanish city of Seville were selected as the 2023 winners of the European Capitals of Smart Tourism competition of the European Union.
According to the European Commission, they were selected out of 29 cities from across 13 countries.
The two European Capitals of Smart Tourism will receive promotional support and a purpose-built sculpture for their city centres, which will be displayed prominently for the duration of their year as a European Capital of Smart Tourism.
Furthermore, the two cities will join the growing network of smart tourism cities in Europe to share their experience and best practices.
Meanwhile, Kranj in Slovenia was selected from 20 candidates as the winner of the 2023 European Destination of Excellence (EDEN) competition and will be promoted as a role model for sustainable tourism practices in Europe.
The European Capital of Smart Tourism is an EU initiative that promotes smart tourism in the EU by rewarding cities for their pioneering approaches in accessibility, digitalisation, sustainability, and cultural heritage and creativity.
Similarly, the European Destinations of Excellence is an EU initiative that recognises and rewards smaller destinations that have implemented successful strategies to boost sustainable tourism.
A jury evaluated the cities on three criteria: the city’s programme of activities envisaged to implement in 2023, the commitment to develop as a smart tourism destination, and the capacity to act as a role model and inspire other cities.