Tourism is an area of great economic significance to the EU. About 900 million holiday trips, almost evenly distributed between short (1–3 nights) and long holidays (4 and more nights) were made by EU tourists in 2005. Tourism expenditures and receipts were nearly in balance for the EU as a whole. Expenditures stood at €235.6 billion, while receipts from tourism stood at €232.6 billion. Although Europe ’s market share, in terms of both arrivals and revenue, of international tourism is tending to diminish in relation to other world regions.
A major goal of the EU is to reduce regional socio-economic disparities among member states and improve the standards of living in the less affluent areas of Europe. Financial assistance is provided in various forms throughout the EU, as well as to non-member neighboring countries through various structural funds, namely the European Social Fund (ESF), the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance (FIFG) and the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund Section.
Although the European Parliament has been relatively slow in establishing policies for tourism relative to other economic, social and environmental areas of interest, partly as a result of not being included in considerations of the first European Treaties, the extent of EU involvement in tourism is considerable. The official recognition of tourism’s importance by the European Commission in the 1992 Maastricht
Although Rome did influence the region through occupation of some areas and by trade, the cultural heritage was primarily Celtic and Gothic in origin and marked by the Druidic faith until Christianized. In the early Middle Ages, as the influence of the Norse was also extremely significant and while Roman language has been influential