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Active tourism, 1st Exhibition in Parma

Immersion travel and outdoor sports as protagonists from 15th to 18th February 2018. A great event dedicated to the new tendencies of active travelling, with special focus on cycle-tourism and golf

Fabrizio Lodi

Active tourism, 1st Exhibition in Parma

T&O - Tourism and Outdoor, which is the biggest manifestation in Italy dedicated to plein air, active tourism and outdoor sports. It will be held at the Fiera di Parma from 15th to 18th, February 2018, with 80,000 sq.m. dedicated to plein air tourism’s destinations and the ways to reach them, a specific indoor area dedicated to cycling - with a ring track of 700 metres, the only one in Italy, to try Mtb and e-bikes - lastly, 10,000 sq.m. dedicated to golf, where a huge indoor practice golf-course will be set up.

It is worth reminding that tourism is one of Italy’s biggest economic strength: it impacts with the 11.1% on the GDP and with 12.6% on the employment market, besides its trend being in constant rise. 2017 also bodes well, thanks to a superior growth rate in the first 6 months (+11.8%) if compared to the other Countries in the European Union.

Traditional tourism is being joined by more focused touristic experiences, able to facilitate a full immersion inside the visited places. Travelling becomes a real chance of knowing traditions, cultures and physical wellness. This is what is called active tourism.

Among Italians, trekking and hiking, but also cycle-tourism, are a hit. Golf is growing, too, considered less and less an elite sport (90,000 members 23,000 of which are women). Simultaneously, a new way of moving is establishing, and not only on holiday: the healthy and eco-friendly e-bike.

The one in Parma, will be a unique chance to choose your favourite destination - from mountains to villages, from lakes to food-and-wine routes - and in the same time testing the best ways to live your touristic experience in total freedom: camper, caravan, canoe, e-bike...

“T&O-Tourism&Outdoor - explains Antonio Cellie, CEO of Fiere di Parma - wants to become the referring point of the Italian view on Active Tourists for the research of immersive and tailor-made destinations. The exhibition will include two events, Parma Golf Show and the Bike Spring Festival, which will be the biggest indoor spaces ever realized in Italy to know and try equipment, means and accessories of these disciplines in which our Country is, for different reasons, protagonist.

With this exposition we will promote those new trends that will enhance the immense cultural and naturalistic heritage of our Country, available also through campers and tents, bikes and e-bikes or simply walking or playing golf.

What certifies this, is the 2022 edition and its prestigious Ryder Cup, that will be held in Rome, together with the great growth in the mobility section of pedal-assisted mobility: in the last year, in Italy, 124,400 e-bikes have been bought, with a growth of +120% compared to 2015.”


Emilia-Romagna has been confirmed as one of the most state-of-the-art regions as regards this new way of moving, silent and sustainable, more and more common, which is bike-walking (in 2016, according to Unioncamere, our Country has registered 42 million cycle-touristic presences, with an impact of nearly 5 billion Euros). This, thanks to a network of trekking routes that extends for 500 km (Alta Via dei Parchi) and 14 paths and historical pilgrimages, beside cycling paths and a selection of Bike Hotels.

On the almost 48 million registered tourists in Emilia-Romagna in the last years (this year has seen an increase that might overcome 50 millions), over one-third of the movement (almost 3 millions arriving and 16 millions of participations) is represented by tourists taking physical exercises during their holidays.

This type of tourism is part of the strategic lines of ENIT for development. If, on one hand, it promotes the touristic seasonal adjustment, on the other hand, the active tourist chooses places far from the most popular, mass-tourism destinations, which, recently, have been subjected to environmental and social sustainability problems.

Free tourism certainly draws lifeblood from campers and caravans. 2016 saw the decisive restart of this sector: in the first ten months of 2017, the caravan sector has greatly increased (+18.5% compared to the same period in 2016).

INFO: www.teofestival.it