Rural landscapes of Europe are products of a thousand-year-old collaboration between human society and nature. They are the result of natural and cultural processes, telling the history of ancestors and originally setting the cultural premises of a territory. Although in rural areas the main economic activity is often agriculture, these regions are increasingly becoming more attractive places for people to live, work and visit. Rural areas are also the home of vital ecosystem services, biodiversity and habitats for many threatened species which makes them areas of excellence for nature tourism.
Maintaining a balance between protecting, conserving and redeveloping heritage values of the rural landscape is the premise for achieving rural regeneration.