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WELCOME TO THE INNOGUIDE BLOG
Welcome to the Innoguide blog!
As Innoguide is developing and the group of its users growing, we started this blog to put a face on the team behind the Innoguide 2.0 project.
We are a group of enthusiastic people, professionals in different fields, who enjoy working on the project. Our project results are the result of our joint forces, the sharing of good practices and research. We all come from different organisations, different countries, yet we share the common goal to develop Innoguide into an (online) world where guide stakeholders can come together. Some of us are tour guides, some are trainers, researchers, even bloggers...
We blog to share with you our experiences, to give advice and to share fun practices with you.
We hope to keep you entertained and informed. Enjoy your read and let us know what you think about Innoguide!
putting the Innoguide interculturality skills to practice
Urban nature walk - an Innoguide inspired company
How Innoguide inspired the formation of a new company
We, two enthusiastic Danish ladies, took part in the Innoguide Sustainability train-the-trainer advanced course in Finland and got very inspired by the lectures given and the discussions among the participants. On the journey back to Denmark we decided to start a new company... Urban Nature Walk was born! Who is we? Our names are Anne Hansen Aamand and Inga Kofoed Andersen and we both work as freelance city guides at Service & Co in Aarhus taking foreign visitors from cruiseships to the main sights in and around the city. We also travel with Danish groups as tourleaders in a lot of European countries.
Taking a course on interculturality in guiding
In the first week of February 2016, guides/guide trainers from Croatia, Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark and Finland were welcomed in Zagreb for the advanced train-the-trainer course on interculturality. The course was well led by Via Via Tourism Academy (Dorien De Troy). Dorien mastered to create such a safe environment in order for us to make full use of all our knowledge, skills and experiences in the different group activities.
An Innoguide training on sustainable guiding
From 18-22 January 2016 the advanced train-the-trainer course on sustainability took place in Finland at the premises of Laurea university. It turned out to be a week we won’t forget very soon. Right from the start there was an immediate connection with all the participants. Hannelore, the teacher ,coach and moderator of some lively and intense discussions, managed to bring the group together with her program on the first day. After an interesting day with a lot of discussions and information about sustainability we all went home, curious what this workshop had to offer the upcoming week!
walking through a winter wonderland
With the first days of December, most of the cities throughout Europe undergo a true Christmas makeover. Everything is decorated with snowflakes, sparkling lights, and Santa hats. No wonder some of the entrepreneurial guides and guide organisations put up special holiday-themed tours.
A seasonal tour is a great idea, as it can address the visitors and local audiences alike. In fact, recent researches indicate there is a growing number of local people interested in guided tours of their own hometowns.
Guiding and expecting the unexpected
One can never be too prepared in the world of guiding
Tour Guiding and Sustainability
This blog post will provide you with a small insight on the matter…
Let's start off with a minor explanation on sustainability methods in tourism. We can define sustainable tourism as "Tourism that takes full account of its current and future economic, social and environmental impacts, addressing the needs of visitors, the industry, the environment and host communities"
I would like to talk to you about a unique guiding experience from Egypt in February 2014.A family of four people - 2 adults and 2 children - had booked a roundtrip in Egypt. The main goal of the trip was to explore Egyptian culture. The 11 days trip was included visits to Aswan, Luxor and a cruise on the Nile.
The family met their guide for the trip and realised that he could speak fluent Danish. This is where the story starts. The guide - Yasser - was an authorised guide who was already fluent in German and English. When the Arab Spring came to Egypt in 2011, however, all the tourists disappeared. There was no work left for him. His first reaction was 'What should I do now?' He made an analysis and asked himself 'How can I be successful in the future (when tourists return to Egypt)? His idea was that if he would learn Danish this would create great future opportunities because all Scandinavians can understand Danish. Yasser started his self-studies because he could not afford going to classes. He studied the Danish language for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week for 3 years. He read books, listened to the Danish radio and watched many movies.
Giethoorn, a remote village in the Dutch polder landscape, 'the Venice of the North'. In this tiny village all the houses are lined up along the canal and the preferred method of transport is punting.
There has always been tourism to Giethoorn - I remember wandering around in Giethoorn and see all the boats pass by. But this last year something has changed: thousands of Chinese tourists have 'discovered' Giethoorn and started visiting the picturesque town.
Dutch documentary makers Ilja Kok and Willem Timmers made a beautiful, highly acclaimed documentary on this phenomenon, by zooming in on the Chinese tourists as well as the locals. We follow Cherry from Beijing who has been wanting to visit Giethoorn for quite some time, taking pictures, taking boat rides and eating Dutch pea soup in the morning - a typical afternoon dish. We see locals taking Chinese classes, serving Dutch pea soup in the morning and putting sign boards in Chinese in their garden. As a local hotelier says: the setting of Giethoorn plays a major role and the tourists love it. The combination with personal attention makes it unique, and of course they love "good food". And: "When you become even more hospitable, you can catch and keep even more."
Why is being a guide the most beautiful job in the world?
I have heard this phrase a dozen times. Being a tour guide is the most beautiful job on earth. I have seen so many officially retired people, but still energised enough never to quit their guide-calling, and always making groups of visitors laugh. What is it about this strange job that makes people forever young? On the other hand, there is a huge bunch of people that doesn't even consider this to be a real job. Instead, they think of it as an easy way to travel around in your twenties, or maybe earn some side money.
In a way, they might be right. There aren't many guides who really earn their living thanks to guiding. And it really is a great side income. It is easy money, too, if you happen to love the job, because then it hardly feels as working. So, maybe it's not a real job.