We are part of the European ECEAT network (European Centre for Ecological and Agricultural Tourism), which was established in Eastern Europe in the early 1990s. The aim was to support traditional small farmers through tourism and to encourage them to continue their profession and thereby protect the environment and valuable cultural landscapes.
The ECEAT farms soon became a veritable treasure for western visitors, who wanted to experience authentic and traditional rural culture. Eco-agrotourism quickly gained popularity and the network now comprises hundreds organic and biodynamic farms and other ecological accommodation facilities in over 15 European countries.
The ECEAT International web site provides a lot of information on the work of the organisation and its members in different countries.
Roots of ECEAT
ECEAT was established in 1991 by several environmental, organic farming and nature protection organisations.
The first participating countries were Poland, former Czechoslovakia and Hungary, and most of the tourists were Dutch. Gradually the network spread across Europe. Scandinavia was included at the end of the 1990’s, thanks to a Dutch couple who moved to Sweden and helped the Nordic partners to build up independent ECEAT organisations in Sweden, Norway and Finland.
For the first ten years the ECEAT movement was coordinated from Amsterdam, but in 2002 the new international, non-profit, non-governmental organisation ECEAT International was established.
Today ECEAT destinations in different countries include hundreds of organic and traditional farms and ecological guesthouses, small campsites and environmentally friendly hotels. Accommodation can vary from B&B to full board, or cottages and group accommodation. ECEAT destinations are often related to protecting cultural heritage or situated near national parkland, so they can be ideal starting points for excursions.
Through the host families the visitor has a chance to get to know local people and their culture.
Sometimes visitors can also participate in farm work or buy organic products. In some countries, such as Poland and the Czech Republic, ECEAT also organizes tours and packages.