Promoting the mountainous and marine cultural landscapes of Crete with the contribution of FORTH | News

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Promoting the mountainous and marine cultural landscapes of Crete with the contribution of FORTH

An important project, with particular gravity for Crete, enters the path of implementation, coordinated by the Foundation for Research and Technology- Hellas (FORTH). At the heart of this study is the enhancement and promotion of the marine and mountainous cultural and natural environment of Mirabello, as well as its protection through the application of practices to prevent risks from natural and man-made factors.

More specifically, the study concerns the Elounda Gulf, combining the sea and land section of ancient Olous, as well as the wider bay area (Oxa, Kolokitha peninsula), with the participation and collaboration of the Lassithi Ephorate of Antiquities, the Ephorate of Old Antiquities and the University of Crete, with the role of the main coordinator assigned to the Institute for Mediterranean Studies (IMS) of FORTH.

The project will implement actions that will contribute decisively to the tourist development of the site and will include the collection of original archaeological and historical material, the integration of the marine and mountainous landscape in the context of the design of marine and terrestrial geoarchaeological routes, the study and analysis of the environmental conditions of the archaeological sites, the documentation and mapping with methods of geoinformatics such as aerial photography, underwater documentation, coastal, land and submarine geophysics mapping and three-dimensional landscape imagery. It also plans to create a virtual reality application to enhance and promote the natural and cultural landscape. The widespread dissemination of results will help local authorities and stakeholders to maximize the uniqueness of the landscape and its emergence as a distinct tourist destination.

According to Dr. Nikos Papadopoulos, Principal Researcher of the Laboratory of Geophysical Satellite Remote Sensing and the Archaeo-Environment of IMS, “the project is in line with the priorities of the Smart Specialization and Sustainable Development strategy and its results will strengthen the regional economy in the field of alternative tourism and tourist traffic, through the promotion of cultural heritage and the natural environment, as key pillars in enriching and upgrading the tourist product”.

The programme "Cretan diachronic landscapes: enhancing the marine and mountainous wealth of Mirabello - DIATOPO" is part of the Operational Programme "Crete", "Experimental Development Demonstration Projects that promote research and innovation in RIS3Crete Areas" of the Region of Crete, and will have a duration of three years.