Homepage Borger-Odoorn with Cittaslow logo
by Hans Pul
In his recent post, Ares introduced the Cittaslow initiative in general, as well as Cittaslow Trani, Italy. Here I will elaborate on Cittaslow in the Netherlands. Currently, there are 4 Cittaslows in the country: Midden-Delfland, Borger-Odoorn, Alphen-Chaam and Vaals. Similar to Reinard’s observation about Cittaslows in Germany, Dutch Cittaslows are small towns and rural municipalities rather than cities. To get a bit of an impression: Midden-Delfland is a rural municipality located in the middle of the Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague, while Alphen-Chaam is a small rural municipality near the Belgium border. Both other municipalities are well-known tourist destinations within the Netherlands: Vaals is known for the highest “mountain” in the Netherlands with its respectable 323 metres of height, which is also the tripoint with Belgium and Germany. Borger-Odoorn is known for its “Hunebedden”, megalithical structures from 3000-4000BC.
Trani at sunset
by Ares Kalandides
I have only been to Trani once. That was about five years ago during a trip around Puglia, which I still consider to be one of the most beautiful Italian provinces. Trani is a small port of approx. 50,000 inhabitants on the Adriatic Sea. For a tourist there are no spectacular sites: there is a cathedral and a fortress, a pretty harbour and some picturesque narrow streets. But does that matter? Is that all we look for when we travel? I don’t think so. There is probably something much more than that: the sense of place, that complex feeling, that a place is unique. Trani belongs to an international network of small towns called cittaslow whose declared goal is to enhance quality of life and local identity. Here is what it’s about and I would love to hear about your experiences with it. Continue reading
By Renard Teipelke
The sun is shining, old couples as well as young families with their children are strolling through the streets, the time stands still and everyone seems to enjoy this lovely summer day in Überlingen at Lake Constance. I am trying to find a hint but I cannot really figure out what makes Überlingen a cittàslow. Maybe, we have to turn to the official website of the cittaslow movement in order to understand why Überlingen qualifies as a cittàslow.
Founded in 1999 by a handful of Italian mayors, cittàslow stands for livable cities. Inspired by the corresponding slow food movement, the quality of urban life is the focal point: regional products, local heritage, cultural diversity, no Americanization through large fast food or cheap clothes franchise companies. Continue reading