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Stockholm 07 October 2013

Tourist Gala: The natural nominees

Norrsken över STF Abisko Turiststation

Among autumn nominees for the Grand Tourism Award and “The Best Experience in Sweden”, almost half are members of The Swedish Ecotourism Society. Moreover, two Nature's Best operators were nominated for the World Responsible Tourism Award. Two examples of nature- and ecotourism’s importance to the Swedish tourism industry.

Grövelsjöns Mountain Station, a gateway to the mountain world for new generations, is nominated for this year’s Grand Tourism Award. / Photo: Per Jiborn

Five of The Swedish Ecotourism Society’s members - STF Aurora Sky Station, Eriksberg Vilt & Natur, Granö Beckasin, Hätteboda Vildmarkscamping and STF Grövelsjöns Mountain Station – have been nominated this year for the Grand Tourism Award. Among the eight candidates for “The Best Experience in Sweden”, there were also four members of The Swedish Ecotourism Society, namely Icehotel, Säfsen Resort, STF Aurora Sky Station and Strömma Kanalbolaget’s archipelago tours. Grand Tourism Award candidates were nominated by regional tourism organizations around Sweden, while nominations for “The Best Experience in Sweden” were contributed by over 30 tour operators in key overseas markets such as Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark, Finland, Norway, China, Russia and the United States. Winners will be selected on October 17 and at the Swedish Travel and Tourism Gala later this autumn.  

Eriksberg Vilt & Natur showcases large wildlife such as red deer, fallow deer and European bison on their semi free ranged enclosure in Blekinge. / Photo: Staffan Widstrand

- This is proof of the attractiveness of Swedish nature. It is experiences like the Northern Lights, timber rafts, wildlife-watching, mountain and forest hikes and archipelago tours combined with delicious local meals and comfortable accommodation that often put Sweden on the map in both foreign and Swedish media. That a total of eight of our member companies are competing for two of the top awards is an extreme honour and gives a hint as to the potential of Swedish nature and ecotourism, says Per Jiborn and adds.
- This is not the first time that our member companies are being featured in these contexts. In previous years, other members were nominated, and several of this year's nominees, such as Eriksberg Vilt & Natur, Icehotel, Säfsen Resort, STF Aurora Sky Station and Strömma Kanalbolaget, have been previously nominated one or more times.  

Cloudberry picking is just one of the activities that attracts visitors to Vuollerim in the Arctic Circle.  / Photo: Lapland Vuollerim Welcomes You

Swedish ecotourism has even been nominated for international awards. At the end of September, the World Responsible Tourism Awards announced that Nutti Sámi Siida was nominated in the category Best for Responsible Wildlife Experiences, while Lapland Voullerim Welcomes You was a nominee in the category Best for the Local Economy.  Both companies are Nature’s Best approved operators, as well as the previously mentioned STF Aurora Sky Station, STF Grövelsjöns Mountain Station and Säfsen Resort.