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Northern Fisheries Trail

FLAG: a cooperation project involving nine Polish FLAGs and spanning three regions in the north of Poland: Western Pomerania, Pomerania, and Warmia and Mazury.

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Nine Polish FLAGs were involved in this cooperation project to develop a tourist trail – a tourism and education product which links and promotes attractions related to the fisheries heritage of three coastal regions in Poland.

The project responded to the need to engage inhabitants of the participating areas in promoting their fisheries heritage and strengthening their local identity. It also aimed to improve the attractiveness of the FLAG areas, especially in the context of the growing interest in culture-related tourism.

The objectives of the project were:
- To develop the tourism potential of the fisheries areas by focusing on their fishing heritage;
- To bring together people, businesses and organisations involved in developing fisheries tourism;
- To facilitate an exchange of knowledge and experience between the participating FLAGs.

In each participating FLAG area, the project supported the creation of an Education and Promotion Centre, which usually involved the construction or renovation of a dedicated building. These centres are the “anchors” of the trail, around which further activities can be developed. They are staffed by employees of the FLAGs and carry out a wide range of educational activities, as well as promoting the area’s fisheries assets. Each centre has a different thematic profile, adapted to the characteristics of the area (e.g. fishing heritage and history; aquaculture; fish cuisine; the marine environment, etc.). The project also involved the development of a visual identity for the trail, including a website, a brochure describing each centre and its attractions, and other promotion materials. These activities were carried out jointly by the participating FLAGs, with one of the FLAGs (Bytow) also playing the role of the initiator and animator of the partnership.


Exhibition of fishing traditions, North Kaszuby FLAG (photo: Anna Maraj)


Opening of the trail in the Masurian Sea FLAG

  • Results: The nine Education and Promotion Centres were established and continued to operate after the end of the funding period, carrying out a wide range of educational and other activities (e.g. in Kaszuby – providing schools with environmental education, fisheries-related games and training on local crafts; in Bytow – organising conferences on the environment and circular economy). The centres are also being used as a stepping stone to other FLAG activities, enabling them to draw on other funding sources. Dozens of small businesses have been involved in each FLAG area (for example, the Slowinska FLAG involved 20 fisheries-related businesses and 10 other actors in promoting the project, through restaurants, hotels and tourism information stands). The inhabitants’ sense of identity and willingness to cooperate has also been strengthened, and new actors are still joining the trail. 

  • Transferability: The project demonstrates that inter-territorial cooperation between FLAGs is possible and can be beneficial. It also shows that it is possible to combine common and individual actions: the trail has a single concept and brand, but its specific activities are adapted to the unique character of each area.

  • Lessons: It became apparent how important it is to have a good analysis of the context and the issues to be addressed, and to clearly identify the specific part(s) of the FLAG area where tourism development is desirable. The involvement of the local community must be taken into account at this early stage. The expectations and needs of all partners should be made clear right from the start and the project activities should be adapted to the specific situation in each area. It is also important to ensure that FLAG managers allocate time to agree and coordinate the activities among the project partners. 

  • Contribution to CLLD objective: diversification, promoting cultural heritage and enhancing environmental assets of the fisheries and aquaculture areas.

FLAG details

Bytow Lake District FLAG (Pojezierze Bytowskie), Poland (Lead Partner)
E-mail: biuro (@)
Tel.: +48 59 822 1259
FLAG Factsheet

Other partners: Szczecin Lagoon FLAG (Zalew Szczecinski), Slowinska FLAG, North Kaszuby FLAG (Polnocnokaszubska), Kaszuby FLAG, Masurian Sea FLAG (Mazurskie Morze), Great Masurian Lakes FLAG (Wielkie Jeziora Mazurskie), Olsztyn Lake District FLAG (Pojezierze Olsztynskie), Vistula Lagoon FLAG (Zalew Wislany).

Total project cost and funding

Total cost: (shared between 9 flags)€1 360 000 
FLAG grant:(100% of total cost)€1 360 000 
 - EFF contribution (Axis 4): €1 020 000 
 - Other public contribution: (regional) €340 000  

Project information
  • Official project title in Member State language: Północny Szlak Rybacki
  • Official project title in translated into EN: Northern Fisheries Trail
  • Implementation duration: July 2014 – June 2015
  • Case study date: October 2016

Project website

Key words: FLAG cooperation, fisheries heritage, diversification of fisheries areas