Last week, a new network of nature-based businesses created by Rewilding Portugal was launched. A new way to explore and discover what the Greater Côa Valley has to offer and that unites several businesses in the region in a common vision of a wilder and more sustainable future.
The Greater Côa Valley
Located between the Douro River and the Malcata mountains, the Greater Côa Valley is a region with an impressive natural, cultural, and historical heritage. With prehistoric engravings, threatened species, ancient traditions and spectacular landscapes, this region is a little-known jewel in Portugal with much to discover.
It is therefore an ideal area to promote sustainable nature tourism, as well as the production of high quality regional products, which can be combined with the best experiences this area has to offer, supporting local communities and using nature to underpin the development of a long-term sustainable economy.
To promote this type of businesses in the region, a new network was created – the Wild Côa Network, which was officially inaugurated last week. A network that aims to promote synergies between local businesses, cooperation between the ones that already exist on the ground and whose common goal is to make the Greater Côa Valley a new destination of excellence for nature tourism.
A union of forces – the launch of the network
The main objective of the Wild Côa Network is to combine the strengths of the various businesses that already exist in the region who want to enhance this territory, always maintaining their identity and investing in the conservation of the natural heritage. This network creates new opportunities for collaboration among all members, strengthening them and orienting them towards a common goal.
Regional products that can be sold in local accommodations, where customers of this new network will be installed, who in turn will also have to use the surrounding restaurant spaces, as well as the services of touristic operators, namely those oriented to the visitation of natural spaces and wildlife watching.
The launch took place online last Tuesday, January 19th, in a meeting in which the network participants had the opportunity to get to know each other better, understand the best ways to collaborate with each other and feel the pulse of this new network.
This network has in this initial phase twelve different entities of different sectors that can work together to develop an inclusive and complete offer to the region visitors. This entities are: A2Z, Ambieduca, Casas de Villar, Casa da Cisterna, Casa Villar Mayor, Flor Alta, Matreira, DreamOverland, Miles Away, WildCôa, WildlifePortugal e Rotas e Raízes. A huge variety of added value in promoting the region and what it has to offer, which can allow an experience of direct contact with nature in the most complete and unforgettable way.
According to Daniel Veríssimo, Entrepreneurship Officer at Rewilding Portugal, “Network members are receiving advice and support from Rewilding Portugal, both in developing strategies for the future and creating new products / services, as well as in the digital marketing and dissemination of offers. We hope that this collaboration between a nature conservation organization and the private sector can bring good results to the region”.
Fernando Romão, responsible for Wildlife Portugal, says that “In a world increasingly degraded by man, both in environmental and social terms, situations like the one we currently live in are an attention call to the urgent need to assume a more sustainable posture in how we exploit resources. The safeguarding of biodiversity, the encouragement and support of local economies with a reduced environmental footprint, the cooperation and the establishment of business networks, such as the Wild Côa Network, create value and promote the territory where they operate, making the future a better place”.
New offers to visit the Greater Côa Valley
Different tourism offers are being developed, integrated by the members of the Wild Côa Network, which will be marketed to the public that wants to know the Greater Côa Valley. Anyone interested in getting to know the area can, with just one reservation, have access to all the offers and experiences. At this starting point, the tour packages will be available at the European Safari Company and Impact Trip, and bookings can be made in the spring / summer of this year, if the situation with the pandemic improves.
This assistance in the construction of a joint offer and its dissemination and promotion aims to increase the visibility of the region, facilitate the access of these operators to new national and international markets, and promote the entire region as a new sustainable tourism destination of excellence.
About our projects
The Scaling Up Rewilding of the Greater Côa Valley project is funded by the Endangered Landscapes Programme,
which is managed by the Cambridge Conservation Initiative and funded by Arcadia, a charity fund by Peter Baldwin and Lisbet Rausing.
This project is carried out in partnership by Rewilding Portugal, Rewilding Europe, ATNatureza, University of Aveiro and Zoo Logical.
Do you want to visit the Greater Côa Valley? Discover several opportunities here.