2021 / 08 / 27
The I International Astrotourism Conference by Starlight will take place from September 8 to 11 at the Espírito Santo College Auditorium of the University of Évora (Portugal). The Portuguese city, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the ideal enclave and belongs to the first Starlight Tourist Destination of the world, Dark Sky® Alqueva.
The event will join over more than a hundred personalities and agents linked to star tourism from all over the world. Its objective is to find answers to the many challenges that are emerging in the field of astrotourism, as well as to continue establishing guidelines for the defense of the night sky and the dissemination of astronomical knowledge.
This conference is organised by the Starlight Foundation and the Associação Dark Sky, in co-organisation with the University of Évora/ CIDEHUS and with the participation of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation and the support of partners such as Sharish Gin, Mourão Municipal Council, Casa da Cumeada, Yoga Centre - Áshrama Évora Dhyána and Louro Wines.
The program of the I International Astrotourism Conference by Starlight begins on september 8 with the IV Starlight Meeting of Astrotourism and II Starlight Meeting of Guides and Monitors, with the participation of Starlight Reserves and Tourist Destinations, other Starlight accreditations and Monitors and Guides, who will meet to exchange experiences and discuss issues associated with the development and implementation of destinations certified by the Starlight Foundation.
In addition, to continue the path of the previous Starlight Meeting that took place in 2019 at the Monasterio del Olivar in Teruel, this fourth edition will try to share concerns and perspectives for the next decade. This meeting is an excellent opportunity to share experiences and establish guidelines for the future.
The main Conference will take place on September 9 and 10, in the Auditorium of the Colégio do Espírito Santo at the University of Évora and will feature an international panel of speakers. It will be debated fundamental issues to the development of astrotourism destinations as dynamic and complex systems that must promote the improvement of its main resource, the night sky. No type of tourism can be sustainable if it does not incorporate the pillars of sustainability into its concept. This is why the debate of ideas, concepts and visions is important so that this concept, both in its narrower and broader versions, can respond to the challenges of sustainability, and to a new tourism model such as scientific tourism, in particular, astrotourism.
The program includes a round table of Affiliate Members of the UNWTO, where members of the Scientific Tourism Working Group led by the Starlight Foundation will participate; an international press corner on communication and science; and a Pact to support SDG18 "Sky Quality and Access to Starlight" will be launched in collaboration with BPW Spain.
In the evening, the programme includes on September 9 a visit to the Official Dark Sky® Alqueva Observatory, located in Aldeia da Cumeada, and on September 10 the Gala Dinner that will include the Starlight 2020 Awards ceremony.
Having as stage the territory Dark Sky® Alqueva, the program of September 11 is marked by leisure moments in Évora and Mourão. The day will begin with two programs that will allow participants to choose a guided tour of the city of Évora or "put their hands in the dough" and learn to prepare regional delicacies with a local.
Starting in the afternoon, the highlight will be the Castle of Mourão where it will be held the Starlight Party Alqueva with thematic workshops, blind tasting of wines "Via Vínica in the Milky Way”, yoga at sunset, solar observation, inspirational talks and more activities, conducted by Starlight- Dark Sky@ Associação guides. A moment dedicated to fascination and to walking through this wonderful universe that surrounds us. And so, nothing better than to end the night observing the deep sky in the company of the specialized guides.
Registrations are already closed. The organization thanks the participants and speakers for their enormous interest and trusts that the I International Astrotourism Conference by Starlight will mark a milestone in the development of the sector.
Further information: https://internationalstarlightconference.com