Interreg Italy-Albania-Montenegro brings sustainable tourism to the Southern Adriatic

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01/12/2021

The CAVES project looks to value Adriatic natural heritage in a sustainable way.

The south of the Adriatic Region disposes of a rich speleological heritage, meaning networks of deep caves of a fascinating natural beauty. While many caves are already accessible to tourists, others are still unexplored or lie undiscovered. CAVES intends to promote sustainable tourism by creating a network between the Apulian, Albanian and Montenegrin tourist caves. 

Co-financed by the Interreg Italy-Albania-Montenegro program, the project looks to tackle a twofold challenge: to take stock of all the existing caverns and caves while making sure that they can be opened up to tourists without harming their natural equilibrium. With CAVES, Universities, associations and local administrations from both Italy and Albania have teamed up to shape the debate and future policy around the protection and simultaneous exploitation of the local speleological heritage. 

The final goal of CAVES is to create two cross-border itineraries and to create a cross-border network to exchange experiences, skills and good practices. Starting in 2020, the project is now entering its final phase. On 27 November, the conference on Management and conservation of tourist caves, building on workshops and trainings that took place throughout the project. 

Project partners, public authorities, tourism operators and experts in the field met at the Caves of Castellana in the Italian province of Bari and displayed all the results the project achieved during the last year. The event ended with a visit of the Castellana Caves, showing all those involved once more the majestic natural wonders the project looks to promote and protect.

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