Visit Finland has granted the Savonlinna Opera Festival the Sustainable Travel Finland mark. The Sustainable Travel Finland program provides tools for sustainable tourism development to industry players, making it easier to implement ecologically sustainable practices. The program awards the Sustainable Travel Finland mark to destinations that meet the criteria and have undergone the program.
The Sustainable Travel Finland program consists of a 7-step path for sustainable tourism development, including activities such as assessing the current state and creating an action plan for promoting sustainable tourism.
“It’s truly remarkable that our sustainability efforts have progressed so significantly this year. We received the EcoCompass certification in July, and now we have the STF mark as well. However, certifications and marks don’t mean that our sustainability work is complete. Both require continuous improvement, and that’s where the real work actually begins,” says Johanna Lahtinen, who coordinates the Opera Festival’s sustainability work.
With the STF mark, the Savonlinna Opera Festival is committed to the national principles of sustainable tourism, which include fair cooperation, promoting equality, and considering climate impacts.
“The immediate revenue impact generated through the Opera Festival was approximately 20 million euros for the Savonlinna economic region last year, and the revenue impact of the past summer is expected to at least reach the same level. Therefore, we bring a lot of benefits to the area, but it is our responsibility to continuously mitigate the impact caused by the month-long festival. Social responsibility also plays a significant role for us. We are a significant employer in the cultural sector. Additionally, we want everyone to feel secure when participating in the Opera Festival,” says Mika Nevalainen, the Commercial Director of the Opera Festival.
In July, the rainbow flag was raised for the first time ever at the tower of Olavinlinna Castle during the Olavinlinna Goes Pride event. The Opera Festival’s ticket office also displayed the rainbow colors in support of equality and human rights. The event was organized by Savonlinna Pride in collaboration with the Savonlinna Opera Festival, Olavinlinna restaurants, and the Finnish National Museum.
“It’s our duty, both as an organization and as individuals, to defend human rights and promote equality. One way to do that is to participate and show our support at Pride events, like the Olavinlinna Goes Pride event organized by Savonlinna Pride,” Nevalainen explains.
The Opera Festival’s sustainability page on their website has been updated during the summer, and all sustainability information and actions are now easily accessible to customers and partners here.
For more information about the Sustainable Travel Finland mark here.
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