EnterCY: Enhancing Tourist Experience In CyprusAccording to the Smart Specialization Strategy for Cyprus (S3CY), the tourism sector is considered as the “spearhead” for the economic development of Cyprus having a significant contribution to the national Gross Domestic Product. S3CY experts, however, pointed out that the traditional “Sea and Sun” tourism development model is obsolete and there is an urgent need for new strategi models for attracting new forms of tourism. They have argued that it is important to direct the focus from quantitative tourism to qualitative and consequently sustainable tourism. One step towards this direction is the promotion of alternative tourism by informing potential tourists about Cyprus’ Mediterranean flavour that combines nature, history, culture, a variety of activities and leisure, as well as the enhancement of tourists’ experience and satisfaction, before, during and after their visit. The EnterCY project aims at developing an integrated virtual and augmented reality platform utilizing cutting-edge Information and Communication Technologies for promoting Cyprus as an attractive destination by (a) informing potential visitors about the rich cultural heritage, variety of activities and wealth of sightseeing locations of Cyprus through a spatio-temporal virtual exploration before their visit, (b) enhancing tourists experience and satisfaction by providing visual and audio guidance, navigation, as well as entertaining and learning by story-telling through augmented reality with location-awareness during their visit in both indoor and outdoor sites, (c) offering an after visit experience through immersive reality technologies, by providing tourists with a personal 360 video of their on-site tour after their visit as a memento and (d) allowing tourists to share their experience in real-time through the platform integration with social media. In all stages of the EnterCY platform, personalization will be employed for presenting the tourists with information and suggestions tailored to their personal interests and needs.
Andreas Konstantinidis, PhD - Coordinator
Christoforos Kronis - Developer
Rafael Alexandrou - Researcher