Zeeland Cruising

- Knowledge center for coastal tourism and local entrepreneurs

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Project description:

Following assignment was provided via the HZ Knowledge Centre for Coastal Tourism who received the inquiry from local entrepreneurs Mr. Klaver, Mr. van Gessel (OceanWide-Expeditions), Mr. Muller (Multraship) and Mr. Kloosterboer (Kloosterboer) in the cruising/shipping business in Zeeland. The assignment focused on conducting research about the feasibility of local cruises, international cruises and cruises on cargo ships which can accommodate a limited number of passengers, all departing from Vlissingen.  

By means of surveys an insight into the wishes and needs of tourists in Zeeland and locals became clear. After these surveys a marketing plan, operational plan and financial plan were made for the client to gain more insight into the possibilities of offering several cruising options.  


The research showed that more of a seasonal spread is noticeable, due to the growth in tourism taking place in the early pre-season (March- April) and the post-season (September-December). This could mean that tourists are no longer looking for things to do in just the high season. To penetrate the market and overcome the competition barriers, Cruising from Vlissingen will have to focus its marketing on the unique combination of nature and cities with a more luxurious experience. Showing professionalism, such as having a well-functioning and high-quality website, combined with a high marketing budget to target customers, will also help in penetrating the market and setting the company apart from its competitors.  

Cruising from Vlissingen's main revenue stream must come from income generated from ticket sales and food & beverages. A third revenue could be any subsidies which would apply to the company.  

After the first phase of this research, it was concluded by all parties that the project would continue to explore the possibilities for local (river) cruises in Zeeland further in depth in the form of an extensive marketing plan. This means more research was requested, and a follow-up of this project was provided during semester 1 of academic year 2020/2022.  

Response client:

"After working with the students in December 2021, the company 'Zeeland Cruising' was actually established. The choice of planned public sightseeing tours as was researched by the students for example, will definitely be part of the offer and probably from March 2023 onwards. The ship we purchased in October 2022 'Jacob van Arteveld', has been operational in November 2022 after the needed modernization".

Dive in Zeeland

- Knowledge Center for Coastal Tourism

Project description:

This assignment is being carried out by the HZ Knowledge Centre for Coastal Tourism team. An analysis of existing research data and literature exploration on nature education and recreation is needed.

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According to many, Zeeland has the most beautiful underwater landscape in Western Europe. Worldwide, the Oosterschelde in particular is seen as an interesting diving area, with an enormous biodiversity. The "Dive in Zeeland" initiative is aimed at informing residents, visitors, tourists, students and scientists and/ or conducting research into the underwater life in the waters of Zeeland.

The goal is to enable a rich and memorable underwater experience in Zeeland, with both a recreational (a fun outing) and educational (learning about the underwater world, importance of nature conservation) objective.


Experiences all over the world concerning diving and underwater attractions were analyzed and looked into. For example, a glass bottom boat, underwater hotel rooms and tourism related submarines. Conclusion was that Gondalos are quite rare around the world but do attract lots of visitors. The next best option with popular results is the submarines and semi-submarines offered for tourism purposes. Another popular touristic attraction is the underwater hotels rooms and restaurants. But these turn out to be too expensive and too exclusive and do not contribute enough to environmental awareness and protection.

When looked into environmental awareness it can be advised to make this a substantial part of the touristic attraction. Informationa about waste management in waters and seas for example can be implemented in the touristic attraction. But also, an underwater learning center can be created before diving in where you can learn about different species underwater. It is advised to use storytelling in designing such a touristic attraction. Games and specified tours for example children can be an attractive selling point. This way you will broaden the target group and attract more visitors.

Respons client:


Project description:

FACET is an EU-funded project that runs in three countries (UK/BE/NL) where several knowledge institutes and business development organizations are working together. Their objective is to make the world a bit better by supporting entrepreneurs in the tourism sector to develop and implement Circular Economy solutions. This sector includes a variety of business types like hotels, restaurants, beachclubs, campings, holiday parks, harbors (including water sports accommodations) and other resorts.

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Three different types of

1) Perform market research on the Tourism& Leisure sector in NL/BE/UK(plus impact COVID)

2) Find and distribute best-practices of specific companies/entrepreneurs that implemented sustainability measuresusing the FACET-wiki

3) Make a contact database of providers of CE-solutions (based on demand entrepreneurs)

Client: FACET

Food tours Zeeland
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The concept of food tours is becoming increasingly popular at several destinations. There are many different types of food tours; in groups or individually, discovering local or regional products, cooking yourself or let chefs cook for you.

Within Zeeland, no food tours are being offered yet. The Watersnoodmuseum (https://watersnoodmuseum.nl/) and ‘het Vijfde Caisson’ (a gastronomy-hub https://watersnoodmuseum.nl/het-vijfde-caisson/) would like to offer a day program including a food tour within the municipality ofSchouwen-Duiveland. You dive into the history of food supply and innovation, local products, collaborations with local food suppliers, experience design, and develop a day program for visitors.

Client: Watersnoodmuseum

Hospitality Pact
For the development of a more sustainable hospitality sector and a future-proof destination Zeeland, a more systematic cross-sector view is required: the broad system perspective "sustainable value creation". The starting point of this system perspective is the pursuit of even more attention to:
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1) The degree of balance between economic, social and ecological interests (quality of sustainability) and

2) The mutual relationships between residents, visitors and companies (quality of hospitality).

A degree of balance between the impacts and values- social, economic and ecological- is necessary for a balanced sustainable development in which all impacts are recognized, taking into account the mutual relationships between residents, visitors and companies.

Which impacts are important (determined objectively and/ or based on perception) and what role do the relationships between residents, visitors and companies play in this? More specifically:

How can the degree of balance be determined on the basis of perceptions of residents and visitors and/ or media coverage?

Client:The HZ Knowledge Centre for Coastal Tourism

Human Capital
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The operational work force within tourism and hospitality establishment in Zeeland is facing challenges. These challenges relate to demographic changes, job conditions and employer image. The vocational tourism and hospitality schools are interconnected with both the cause and solution of particular problems. A project exists that investigates related issues to increase an understanding that could help prosper the industry’s human capital.

Client: Knowledge Centre for Coastal Tourism

Museums and overnight stays

The Watersnoodmuseum would like to collaborate with Het Vijfde Caisson(a gastronomy-hub) and Camping De Vier Bannen (a campsite) and offer a package deal including a museum visit and an overnight stay. The goal of this package will be to re-live 1953 by its food and stories, but also dive into the future and experience 2053. Innovation and sustainability are two important elements for these clients. The assignment is to provide concrete recommendations to create a 24-hours package deal, while incorporating the past (1953), the present and the future (2053).

Client: Watersnoodmuseum

Sport tourist activities in blue zones
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Bodyline Healthcenter is partnering with Hotel de Blanke Top in Cadzand-Bad. The hotel wishes to offer more sports activities which Bodyline Healthcenter will provide. The hotel would like to offer activities for three target groups: active people (between 30 and 60), the parents of this target group (are also often in the hotel) and the children.

Possible activities are mountainbiking, yoga, Pilates, bootcamp, a parent-and-child activity, and possibly a SUP experience (still in consultation). More research is needed into these target groups and their wishes andneeds in the field of sports activities.

Client: Bodyline Healthcenter and Hotel de Blanke Top


The Covid-19 pandemic has created a great demand for private sanitary facilities at recreational accommodations. Some entrepreneurs in Zeeland have anticipated on this. However, municipalities are reluctant to issue permits. That is why research is needed into the need for private sanitary facilities for different types of accommodation(chalets,(mini)campsites, tipi’s, safari lodges, mobile homes etc.). It is expected that guests have different wishes with regard to the type of accommodation theychoose. You will be in contact with the accommodation providers of the organization VEKABO and conduct research on what guests are looking for and provide concrete recommendations for the industry in Zeeland.

Client: VEKABO