The cross-border MOVELETUR project is giving people the chance to experience the beautiful scenery and cultural highlights of north-west Spain and northern Portugal in a truly ‘green’ way. The project has provided emission-free transport options, including e-cars and e-bicycles, which people can hire at no cost, to travel through a number of parks. Recharging infrastructure is provided, along with a number of carefully selected travel itineraries, to help locals and tourists make the most of their days out.
"MOVELETUR has contributed to developing cross-border Natura 2000 sites as sustainable touristic destinations, promoting electric mobility, both between visitors and between local populations and entrepreneurs in north-west Spain and Portugal."
Jesús Díez, Project Manager
The main objective of the project is to promote a sustainable and clean tourism model for visitors of border natural spaces. The project also aimed to create a network of “green” tourist itineraries that connect points of natural and cultural value to border natural spaces in electric vehicles. Electric bicycles complement the transport options for the planned itineraries.
MOVELETUR combined technology with local knowledge to develop a sustainable and clean tourism model that exploits the latest advances in e-transport. The project has provided four e-cars, 81 e-bicycles, eight e-scooters, three e-quadricycles and three e-tricycles.
All the equipment can be used for free by people visiting the area’s natural parks. The vehicles can be picked up at the parks’ visitor centres and booking services are available online. An android App has been developed to provide more information. The aim is to attract around 25 000 extra visitors a year to the cross-border region’s cultural and natural heritage sites.
There are 16 strategically located car battery charging points in the natural parks. In Spain, four are in Gredos Regional Park, one in Batuecas Natural Park, three in Arribes del Duero Natural Park and three in Sanabria Natural Park. Portugal’s Montesinho Natural Park has five charging points.
To maximise the use of the e-vehicles, the project enhanced electric mobility tourism. The MOVELETUR team created a network of tourist itineraries which include the charging stations. These routes take in public buildings, cultural attractions, scenic stops and accommodation options to ensure visitors make the most of their trips. Users can travel with confidence knowing that their emission-free transport will not run out of power – even in the most isolated places.
A number touring options are available thanks to the project. A total of 18 e-bicycle itineraries have been devised: 11 in Spain and seven in Portugal. Meanwhile, people choosing the e-cars can take their pick of 11 routes in Spain and three in Portugal. Seven ‘electric weekend experiences’ have been developed, which include a number of proposed activities for two-day trips to the region’s natural parks.
In addition, the adventurous traveller can enjoy an e-car cross-border route that covers 987 km and runs through seven Natura 2000 areas in Spain and Portugal. The route links with car battery charging points every 100 km.
Total investment and EU funding
The total budget of the project was more than 900,000 euros, of which about 700,000 comes from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), in the framework of the INTERREG Spain-Portugal Program (POCTEP). The investment falls under the priority “Environment and resource efficiency”.
A total of 8 partners participated in this project. The Spanish partners involved are the Natural Heritage Foundation of Castilla y León (coordinating partner), Diputación de Ávila (APEA), and EREN. On the Portuguese side, the Association ADIRBA (Associação Para o Desenvolvimiento Integrado da Región do Barroso), the Municipality of Braganza, the Instituto Politecnico de Castelo Branco (IPCB), and the Regional Energy and Environment Agency (Oeste Sustentavel) are associated partners.