A Geopark is an especially designated area can be experienced in the Earth's history. In these spaces should be understood as landscapes in which occur rocks and raw materials in the subsurface and how geology and soils affect the respective land use. These subjects are taught by offers such as guided walks, information boards and leaflets.

Since the 1990s, there is a movement to expel Geoparks world. An outstanding example is the international network of UNESCO Geoparks (Global Geoparks Network).

In 2000, the European Geoparks Network was established that links its members in the European region with each other and economic support.

The term "National Geopark " is awarded in Germany to test and guarantee certain quality criteria of the GeoUnion Alfred Wegener Foundation.

  • 2.1 geo points in Geoparks

International Geopark Networks

European Geoparks Network

The network was founded in 2000 consisted of (as of July 2011) 43 Geoparks in 17 countries. As of July 2012, already 50 Geoparks in 18 countries are members of the network. Six German Geoparks are currently a member of the network. It supports its members in public relations and sustainable management. It promotes mutual cooperation between members, holds conferences on the joint education and training and promotes the gentle Geotourism of connected regions. Membership is connected with membership of the Global Network of UNESCO Geoparks.

Global Network of UNESCO Geoparks

The UNESCO supported initiatives since 2002, a global network of national geopark ( Global Network of National Geoparks ) to create.

The since 2004 Global Network of National Geoparks furnished, the promotion of so-called sustainable tourism for the purpose. With the network regions should be supported worldwide who integrate their outstanding geological heritage in a specially tailored socio -economic regional development concept. This strategy should equally promote the protection and use of geotopes. Currently (September 2013), the network comprises 100 member regions from 29 countries.

Former Global Geoparks

National Geopark in Germany

A National Geopark has geological attractions that are of regional and national geoscientific significance, rarity or beauty and can be considered representative of a landscape and its geological history. The designation as a National Geopark is not to be understood as another kind of a nature reserve, but to be regarded as a seal of approval on time.

Be opened up to the public National Geopark geological hiking paths connecting particularly distinctive and easily accessible examples of geological sights. These are referred to differently depending on the park, for example Geostopp or Geopoint. The geological outcrops and landscapes are partially protected as Geotop.

With the establishment of the Geopark is sought

  • To preserve a healthy environment for future generations
  • To improve geoscience education in the population
  • To promote economic development at the local level (including tourism ) of the land.

The title " Geopark " is not a legal protection status in Germany and therefore brings no restrictions for the region itself.

Geoparks are by presentation, conservation and sustainable use of geological heritage are also used for realization of the objectives of Agenda 21 of the UN Conference on issues of Environment and Development ( UNCED, Rio de Janeiro 1992).

In Germany, the award is called the " National Geopark " certified by the GeoUnion Alfred Wegener Foundation for the Advancement of Earth Sciences, and funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Occasion to introduce the action was 2002 - the year of the geosciences. After five years, it is checked whether the predicate National Geopark and this lent logo planet earth - world of Geosciences may still be continued and rightly so. Other certifications as "National Geopark " by the GeoUnion Alfred Wegener Foundation are carried out continuously.

The first national Geoparks in Germany there since July 1, 2003 Currently there are 14 National Geoparks. :

Geo Mountain Natural Park Street -Odenwald | Bavaria - Bohemia | ice age land on the Oder border | Border Worlds | Resin - Braunschweiger Land - Ostfalen | Inselsberg - Drei Gleichen | Geopark Kyffhaeuser | Muskau Arch | ream | Geopark Ruhr | Geopark Swabian Alb | Eifel Volcanoes | Nature and Geopark TERRA.vita | Westerwald- Lahn- Taunus

Former Geopark Mecklenburg Ice Age landscape

Geo points in Geoparks

As Geopoint is referred to geographically, culturally and historically important points in the Geopark, which are accessible to the public through labeling. Geo points are an extension of the terms used purely geological information, Geostopp, Geotop, landmark, etc. The present geo points intelligible scenic, geological, cultural and historical peculiarities in the municipalities, each with an information board in the most respective Geopark layout. With the installation of Geopunkten it is possible the municipalities to present their points of scenery. Based on the corresponding signs of different starting points (mostly highways ) to visitors can be directed to the respective Geopoint consistent and recognizable. The inclusion of geo points in the various works of Geo - information nature parks (eg hiking maps and cycling networks ) is planned or already implemented.

The aim of Geopunkten is their integration into the surrounding landscape. They are intended to give visitors the Geoparks the nature and peculiarity of this landscape by draw attention to typical regional attractions.