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The Polish Tourism and Sightseeing Society promotes tourism and sightseeing, and one of its means is granting badges for various achievements, such as walking above 250 km on tourist routes, participating in 5 orienteering contests, visiting one of UNESCO memorials, visiting national parks and nature monuments, visiting historical places etc.

Well, you all participate in StackExchange sites, so I think I don't have to explain the rationale behind badges ;)

I wonder if something like that is functioning in Western Europe, especially in Germany.

--edit--
There are EarthCache Discovery Awards, which are worldwide, which means, they can be achieved also in Germany. Generally, the whole Geocaching falls into that concept.

But it's not exactly what I want. I'm looking for some challenges connected with visiting trails, hiking, etc.

  • Foursquare will give you virtual badges for checking in to various places while you travel... – Mark Mayo Supports Monica Jun 12 '12 at 7:17
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    Yeah, but the kind of badges awarded by PTTK are, IMHO, much more valuable, because this is an established and respected organization. – Tschareck Jun 12 '12 at 8:07
  • Established and respected? :) Can you say... membership size? ;) – MastaBaba Jun 12 '12 at 11:55
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    What about over 70000 members and 60 years old? – Tschareck Jun 12 '12 at 12:16
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There are similar organizations to Polish Tourism and Sightseeing Society (PTTK).

  • German Alpine Club (Deutscher Alpenverein, DAV) is equivalent to PTTK in Germany
  • Austrian Alpine Club (Österreichischer Alpenverein, OEAV) is equivalent in Austria (they even have a division in Poland)
  • In Czech Republic there is Czech Tourist Club (Czech: Klub českých turistů, KČT)
  • In Slovakia there is Slovak Tourist and Skiers Club (Slovak: Klub slovenských turistov a lyžiarov, KSTL)
  • In Austria and Germany there are NGOs called "Friends of Nature" (German: Naturfreunde). Links: Austria, Germany

I don't know about badges in Germany and Austria, but according to some forums, Czech and Slovak organizations do award similar badges, but those are more requiring. You'd need to hike a lot of kilometers in short time.

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We managed to gather short list of badges/patches from around the world in this Outdoors SE question: Badges for tourists achievements/quests.

Quoting the part about Austria and Germany:

This concept is known in German as "Wandernadel" and implemented by a lot of local tourist assiciations, usually in the form of a "book" you can stamp at designated stamp stations on interesting locations. Examples are Vienna, Schladming, Gastein, but there are many more if you google the term.

(The same seems to be true in parts of Germany, there's at least a Harzer Wandernadel.)

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    If you find more of these feel free to expand Outdoors SE answer, as it's set as Community Wiki, so it means that can (and should) be just edited to expand it. – pbm Oct 7 at 13:06

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