We are pleased to announce that MedINA and the Kytherian Foundation for Culture and Development (KIPA) have launched their cooperation in early May. This new cooperation aims to strengthen the network of hiking trails in Kythera as well as to develop a range of demonstrative activities on the fields of research, conservation, visibility and awareness raising with the ultimate goal of further preserving local natural and cultural heritage.
The value of low impact and alternative types of tourism that centre on the competitive advantage of a place, namely local natural and cultural heritage, is a vision shared by the two partners who –through their collaboration- aim to further develop and promote the Kythera hiking trails. The wide range of actions to be implemented in this direction will include strengthening the infrastructure of the trails network, utilising electronic information media, building demonstrative projects using traditional ecological knowledge and practices, open and participatory environmental monitoring, environmental education and the creation of a knowledge base for selected elements of nature and culture.
This collaboration is being initiated as an activity under the INCREAte project for which the island of Kythera is the pilot site. As part of the INCREAte project, two reports have been created – the Cultural and the Natural Rapid Assessments for the island of Kythera. In July 2016 a participatory workshop was held with the local community during which their aspirations for the development of their island were expressed. Based on these three elements, a vision and a set of suggested strategies were formulated, one of which was “strengthening the tourism potential of the island through the promotion of the linkages between nature and culture”.