Human-Nature Interactions and Impacts of Tourist Activities on Protected Areas

Tourism in protected areas is a sensitive issue. It is sometimes hard to find the right balance between preserving these and opening them up to visitors. The HUMANITA project develops evidence-based and participatory management tools that allow regions to better monitor and evaluate the impact of tourism in protected areas. The partnership involves tourists and local communities in the development of their solutions, which helps to collect data, create more awareness and change behaviour.

With a growing number of visitors and visitor activities, protected areas in Central Europe experience an increase of human-nature conflicts arising. Recreational activities, like hiking, mountain biking, or skiing lead to various environmental impacts on physical and hydrological processes as well as on ecology and wildlife.


  • Test and produce innovative solutions to assess the impact of tourist activities on nature.
  • Assist managers of protected areas to optimize them with nature protection.
  • Involve tourists and local communities in participatory monitoring to bring awareness-raising, trust-building, and behavioural change.
  • Enhance the protection of natural heritage, ecosystems, and valuable areas.
  • Develop ‘common heritage’ narrative for pilot sites.

5 Pilot actions testing new innovative monitoring methods
1 Transnational monitoring strategy
6 Solutions assessing the impact value of different types of tourist activities on nature
5 Local action plans to monitor and resolve human-nature conflicts in pilot sites

University of Žilina, Slovakia

Project partners

  • Eurac research, Italy
  • University of Parma, Italy
  • NOTITIA, Croatia
  • Carinthia UAS, Austria
  • EGTC Geopark Karawanken/Karavanke, Austria
  • Administration of National Park Malá Fatra, Slovakia
  • CEEweb for Biodiversity, Hungary
  • Public Institution Kamenjak, Croatia
  • Bükk National Park Directorate, Hungary
  • Tuscan-Emilian Apennine National Park, Italy

Duration: 1.4.2023 – 31.03.2026

This project is supported by the Interreg CENTRAL EUROPE Programme with co-financing from the European Regional Development Fund.


With this newsletter, we will start a series of newsletters with the purpose of presenting our longstandingwork and effort in addressing the human-nature interactions and impacts of tourist activities on protected areas. Our goal is to show you what we have been doing in this regard until now, and what we expect toachieve in the future.

HUMANITA Newsletter Nr. 1, August 2023