EXPERIENCE More Business in Kent with our new project

We’re working on a new Interreg EXPERIENCE project with Visit Kent that aims to extend the tourism season through the development of off-season experiences, supporting local businesses and promoting our natural assets.

Our aim is to help businesses, organisations and individuals to develop sustainable rural tourism experiences in the Kent Downs National Landscape and along the North Downs Way, bringing visitors all year round. The project capitalises on the growing global trend for personalised and local tourism experiences, giving visitors more reasons to respect, protect and enjoy our beautiful county.

Relaxing outdoors sleeping

What is an EXPERIENCE?

Traditionally, tourism across much of Kent is ‘destination’ based and focussed on promoting popular destinations during peak season. However, visitors increasingly seek personalised and authentic local tourism experiences. Experiences where they can actively engage and feel a sense of connection to local foods, activities, history, arts and craftsExperiential tourism immerses the visitor and takes them beyond simply seeing places and following run of the mill itineraries.

We want visitors to be able to walk in the footsteps of ancient pilgrims, learn about locally growing mushrooms from expert guides, make wooden spoons from nearby timber, practice meditation in a vineyard, fly a kite on our iconic coastline and many more authentic, local and sustainable experiences.

Kit's Coty, with iron fence around it. Grass fields and trees overhanging in foreground.

What’s in it for you?

Join us to help deliver our EXPERIENCE project and benefit from;

  • Increasing visitor numbers and overnight stays particularly during the off-season between October and March.
  • Opportunities to connect with other rural businesses in the area.
  • Access to new distribution channels though the relationships we have and are building with the travel trade in the UK and Internationally.
  • Chances to be included in relevant consumer campaigns to attract new and diverse audiences.
  • Focussed training, support and help to adapt your offer to the needs of this growing market.
  • Toolkits, assets and content that you can use to promote your business and make the most of the beautiful countryside around you

See how EXPERIENCE can benefit you.

Public foot path sign, overlooking White Cliffs of Dover, with green and sea in the distance.

Free Resources

Devils Kneading Trough through fingers forming a heartshape.

Join our Network

Become part of Sustainable Tourism Business community by joining networking and peer learning events.

Outside church with food stalls and people walking around, on a sunny day.

Free Promotion

Reaching outdoor markets through new campaigns, channels and partners.

How is EXPERIENCE funded?

EXPERIENCE is a €23m project co-funded by the Interreg France (Channel) England Programme, which has committed €16m from the European Regional Development. Projects are funded in six areas across England and France: Norfolk, Kent, Cornwall, Pas-de-Calais, Compiègne and Brittany. Close collaboration across the six regional projects ensures insights and best practice are shared.

EXPERIENCE in Kent is match funded by:

  • Ashford Borough Council
  • Canterbury City Council
  • Dover District Council
  • Folkestone & Hythe District Council
  • Gravesham Borough Council
  • Kent County Council
  • Medway Council
  • Thanet District Council
  • Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
  • Swale Borough Council

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