The Ager Foundation Promoting of Agro and Eco Tourism in Gozo

 

Who We Are:

 

 

Founded in October 2005, the Ager Foundation is the pioneer and leading promoter of agro and eco tourism in the island region of Gozo. Its role as a non-profit making non-governmental organisation is to act as a catalyst in the field of induction to sustainable, environmentally friendly tourism as well as advancing environmentally ventures where visitors are enabled to actually experience the healthy local lifestyle.

This is the first innovative project in the island of Gozo in creating a responsible tourism infrastructure based on eco and agro tourism criterion.

The Ager Foundation of Gozo has been short listed for  the 2006 First Choice Responsible Tourism Awardsfrom over 1200 nominations from discerning travellers. These awards are the most prestigious of their kind in the world.  The First Choice Responsible Tourism Awards highlight tourism ventures that make a positive contribution to conservation and the economies of local communities while minimizing negative environmental impacts of tourism.

Our organization is also a member of the Terra Madre Slow Food International and was invited to take an active part in the World Meeting of Food Communities in Turin back in 2006. We organized a presentation called: ‘Responsible tourism and the culture of hospitality’ by giving examples of our services.

 

 

 

 

 

Our Responsible Tourism Policy

 
 
 

Meaning of Ager

 
 

 

Our mission is to educate, promote and improve the quality of the life and the sustainable rural development by offering hands-on experiences with the locals.

The project aims to create a tourism infrastructure while encouraging new entrepreneurial activities in rural areas of the island of Gozo by:

Capitalising on a more significant sustainable advantage of Gozo as a tourist destination and a unique selling proposition: the people, the hospitality tradition, the culture and countryside and its ecology;

Smoothening out the seasonality pattern of Gozo tourism, as agro tourism in Gozo is basically an all weather product;

Directing tourists to the countryside, thus allowing for a less biased geographical distribution of the tourist population in the island-region;

Marketing Gozo as a unique destination while providing a focus of action and debate for participants (both service providers and service users) to promote and implement the values of respect towards traditions and culture in an ecologically sustainable society.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

Basically the word Ager has two meanings. The Latin Etymology of Ager means a field. We like this meaning since it indicates that this project is directly related with human’s work and its direct connection with nature and mother earth. The second meaning of Ager derives from the Romance meaning ‘to act’ and ‘to be doing’. This is also a very suitable meaning for the Ager Foundation since our services focus on giving a hands-on experience to our guests since we encourage them to take an active part in the events.

 


The Ager Foundation became a a member of the Slow Food Movement in 2007. The Slow Food Movement is a non-profit, eco-gastronomic member-supported organization that was founded in 1989 to counteract fast food and fast life, the disappearance of local food traditions and people’s dwindling interest in the food they eat, where it comes from, how it tastes and how our food choices affect the rest of the world. To do that, Slow Food brings together pleasure and responsibility, and makes them inseparable. Today, we have over 100,000 members in 132 countrie

 

What we offer

 

 

These are the current events

Experience a day in the tranquil life of a local shepherd and actively participate in making fresh cheese

strong>Explore the natural habits, physical geography and social history of a Gozitan

Experience the taste and the preparation of natural Gozo food/p>

 
 
 
 

Experience a day in the tranquil life of a local shepherd 

and actively participate in making fresh cheese

We warmly welcome you to live and experience an idyllic day in the tranquil pastoral life of a local shepherd and to actively contribute in the making of traditional Gozitan cheese.

The tranquil environment which lends itself to a deep sense of serenity, coupled with the stimulus of discovering how the farmer and his herd live in harmony and communion with the land are a must for discerning travellers.

Hands on involvement in the feeding and milking of the sheep as well as your valued participation in the process of Gozitan cheese-making enable you to experience it too.

The processing of Gozitan cheeselets, which are consumed fresh, sun dried, salted or peppered, is an intensely engaging experience.

The abundant supply of cheeselets made from the sheep's milk fulfils the unpretentious shepherd's aspirations.

An authentic traditional lunch with your host is included in this event, featuring a wide variety of local produce and a rich local dish ensuring that your day will be a memorable one.

 

 

 

Price:

All this for Euro 18.50 per adult and Euro 9.25 per child under 12 (including taxes). Group rates are subject to numbers.

 

Programme: Starting time 09.00 - 13.30

  • Meeting Ager Foundation Personnel

  • Welcome tea/coffee with host family

  • Light work on the farm, feeding animals and milking sheep

  • Authentic lunch with host family

  • Cheese making

  • Shearing of sheep

How to book:

Do not hesitate to contact us for further details and information about availability. We advice an advanced booking of at least 1 week.

You can book via e-mail or telephone indicating the number of participants (adults and children) and the preferred day/s. We will do our best to see if any of our host families are available on the date/s of your choice.

These hands-on experiences are not for large groups; however the minimum number of persons is 6 adults. If you are less than this number, you can book just the same and we will do our best to book you up with another small group or couple.

If you or any member of the family/friends is vegetarian, please let us know to arrange a vegetarian lunch.

It is advisable to wear your most comfortable clothing and footwear.

For more information on this and other services offered by the  Ager Foundation

 

or phone Victor on +356 7901 7017

or Miriam on +356 9980 6099

or Tel/Fax on +356 21564378

 

 

 

         
 

 
 
 
     

Explore the natural habitat, physical geography and social history of a Gozitan

Gozo is an astonishingly green and fertile island, and this programme is designed to enable you to discover why!

The spectacular rocky coastline is full of hidden creeks, coves and tiny beaches, used for centuries by pirates as hiding places. You will be astounded by the breathtaking cliff scenery and luscious profusion of wildflowers sprawling along the cliff tops.

 

 

Inland, you will be guided through tiny terraced, stone-walled fields along narrow gorge-like valleys, through ancient hilltop villages, and over the remote rugged garrigue countryside.

 

 

You will be on the inside-track, actively involved with the local farmer, cultivating the land. Our trained guide will help explore and identify all the flora and fauna you will find on display before your very eyes. You will likewise have the opportunity to explore and discover the natural and social history of the venue.

You won't go home hungry either!

You will get to savour the very best of local food and drink.

Price:

All this for EUR 18.50 per adult and EUR9.25 per child under 12 (including taxes)

 

 

Programme:

From 09.00 till  13:30

  • Meeting Ager Foundation personnel.

  • Meeting farmer/s in their natural milieu.

  • Hands-on and interactive programme including:

         Range of activities with the local farmer, cultivating the land.

         Exploring, identifying the Flora and Fauna

         Discover the natural and social history

 
  • Adventure trail encompassing full emersion of the topography, geology, climatology and the natural and man-made irrigation system

    Purposefully strolling in unspoilt natural terrain, enjoying nature and bird watching, in a relaxed and meaningful way.

  • Enjoy an open air picnic, featuring fresh Gozitan 'ftira', an appetizing, wholesome meal made of oven old village bakery - baked bread serving as a jacket for a sumptuous selection of fillers, ranging from 'gbejniet' (Gozo cheeselets), anchovies and/or fresh tomatoes.

 

How to book:

Do not hesitate to contact us for further details and information about availability. We advice an advanced booking of at least 1 week.

You can book via e-mail or telephone indicating the number of participants (adults and children) and the preferred day/s. We will do our best to see if any of our host farmers are available on the date/s of your choice.

These hands-on, experiences are not for large groups; however preferably the minimum number of persons is 6 persons. If you are less than this number you can book just the same and we will do our best to book you up with another small group or couple.

If you or any member of the family/friends is vegetarian, please let us know  to arrange a vegetarian lunch.

It is advisable to wear your most comfortable clothing and good walking shoes.

For more information on this and other services offered by the  Ager Foundation

 phone Victor on +356 7901 7017

or Miriam on +356 9980 6099

or Tel/Fax on +356 21564378

Experience the taste and the preparation of natural Gozo food

Gozitan cuisine has been influenced by the people who made their home here over the centuries, from the Arabs, Italians and Spanish to the French and British. Traditional Maltese cooking has distinct touches of the Sicilian and Moorish.

The Ager foundation, being a member of the Slow Food International, strives to preserve traditional and local cuisine and promotes farming of plants, seeds and livestock characteristics of the local ecosystem. Joining one of our cultural tours will give you the opportunity to discover what local villagers have to offer: traditional pasta dishes garnished with home made sauces followed by rich sweets. One should mention in this regard ravioli (ravjul) with fresh sheep cheese - just as an example.

 

Gozitan cheeselets are an important item in our people's diet.  A cheeselet on a pancake (gbejna fuq ftira) is also popular. Take part in mashing the fresh cheeselets to make ordinary cheese-cakes (pastizzi) and/or the traditional round cheese-cakes (qassatat) or a pie (qassata) with beans or pumpkin according to the season. Traditional home-made blood pudding is also a curiosity one should not miss to taste. Home made wine is another option.

 

 

Take an active part in the food preservation process of dried fruits such as dried figs (tin imqadded), and its by-product "tin tac-cappa" (lumps of figs) as well as dried tomatoes and other home-made items of food for many Gozitan families. Join your host in acquiring some of the ingredients mainly from the village neighbourhood.

Obviously you won't go home hungry either!

You will get to savour the very best of local food and drink which you prepared together with your host.

 

Price:

All this for EUR 18.50 per adult and EUR9.25 per child under 12 (including taxes)

 

Programme:

From 09.30 till  13:30

  • Welcome tea/coffee with host family while cooking the traditional coffee with ground cloves and other herbs

  • Food preparation and cooking including fillings and preparing the dessert/sweet

  • Home-cooked lunch with host

  • Optional picking of capers or other seasonal fruits from the countryside

  • Preserving seasonal fruits in the traditional way (example: dried tomatoes, dried figs, onions and other home-made items of food) for many Gozitan families.

  • Afternoon Tea/Coffee

 

 

How to book:

Do not hesitate to contact us for further details and information about availability. We advice an advanced booking of at least 1 week.

You can book via e-mail or telephone indicating the number of participants (adults and children) and the preferred days. We will do our best to see if any of our hosts are available on the date/s of your choice.

These hands-on experiences are not for large groups; however preferably the minimum number of persons is 2 and not more than 4.

If you or any member of the family/friends is vegetarian, please let us know to arrange a vegetarian lunch.

It is advisable to wear your most comfortable clothing.

For more information on this and other services offered by the  Ager Foundation

phone Victor on +356 7901 7017

or Miriam on +356 9980 6099

or Tel/Fax on +356 21564378

 

 

 

AgerFoundation.com