International Geopark Networks

UNESCO Geosciences Programme and the Geoparks of the UNESCO World Network

On 17 November 2015, the UNESCO Plenary Assembly, representing 195 States, at its 38th General Conference held in Paris, approved the new “International Geoscience and Geoparks Programme” (IGGP)” actually establishing a new category of UNESCO designated sites:

UNESCO Global Geoparks

A list that at present – after the update in April 2021 – includes 169 Geoparks at the international level, distributed in 44 countries worldwide, of which 81 in Europe and 9 in Italy.

Information sheets on the individual UNESCO Global Geoparks are available on the website:


The worldwide network of UNESCO Geoparks is organised into regional networks:

  • Asia – Pacific Geoparks Network
  • Latin American Geoparks Network
  • North American Geoparks Network
  • Africa.

Italy is obviously part of the European Geoparks Network.

The UNESCO Global Geoparks network works in close synergy with other official UNESCO programmes – World Heritage Programme (WHL), Man and the Biosphere Programme (MAB) – as well as with non-governmental organisations active in geological heritage conservation.

Mappa dei Geoparchi europei

European Geoparks Network – EGN

Throughout Europe it is possible to find examples of landscapes and rocks that provide key evidence of a specific moment in the Earth’s history and that belong to our geological heritage.

Europe’s geological heritage represents our common history, which can be read in the rocks that shape territories and landscapes.
A visit to a European Geopark offers the opportunity to experience an extraordinary discovery! These territories invite you on a real journey through time.

You can meet incredible natural monuments and interact with guides, museum operators, researchers and park managers who work in a highly motivated way to combine sustainable economic development with the protection and conservation of an extraordinary heritage.
The European Geoparks offer visitors a genuine welcome, meeting their discovery needs and desires. Click.
here to visit the site

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UNESCO Global Geoparks in Italy

Italy is well represented on the international scene with nine territories recognised in the list of UNESCO Global Geoparks. The role that the Italian Geoparks currently play within the EGN and GGN networks is particularly significant, not only because of the decidedly large number of territories involved, but also and primarily because of the quality that the territories themselves represent at the national and international level.
A strong and authoritative testimony to the fantastic geological heritage of our country.

The nine Geoparks achieved this prestigious recognition by implementing innovative management strategies on their territories, in which geo-conservation and educational, dissemination and enhancement activities are able to activate a virtuous path for sustainable development, a process of redevelopment and territorial enhancement that respects local cultures and is projected towards a new model of land use. Click here to find out more about the Italian Geoparks Network.