Press Release 2015
A four day stay on Amorgos
The Women’s Cultural Association of Tholaria, Amorgos, and Aegialis Hotel & Spa are pleased to announce that the 13th International Convention on Tourism and Culture YPERIA 2015 took place successfully on Amorgos Island, Greece, from Wednesday October 21st to Monday October 26th 2015, under the auspices of the Municipality of Amorgos, the Ministry of Culture, the Ministry of Mercantile and the Aegean and HATTA and sponsored by the Greek National Tourism Organization and the Region of South Aegean.
Fifty participants from 14 different countries (Australia, Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, the United Kingdom, Israel, Italy, Canada, the Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Serbia and Sweden) came to Amorgos in order to discover the island and promote it through newspapers, documentaries, TV programmes and film festivals, and discuss prospects for new projects based on Amorgos.
YPERIA 2015 aimed at presenting participants with the natural beauty and the historical monuments of Amorgos, but also with various activities that remain on the island. It is an opportunity to show the importance locals give to their land’s nature and traditions, as well as the potential for upgrading the touristic product of the island.
Based on the above principles, guided excursions were organized to the most important monuments of Amorgos, as well as locations of special interest.
On the first day, participants were guided in the area of Aegiali, starting from the village of Langada and the area of Panagia Epanochoriani and Drys, in small distance from the village by the path. In continuation, they had an introduction to the wealth of the Amorgian nature by Mr Vangelis Vassalos, in his distillery of essential oils extracted from local herbs and the shop Iamata. After a coffee break offered by café-bar Pergalidi, participants continued to the village of Tholaria, where they visited the church of Agioi Anargyri and the Byzantine Museum, before continuing for lunch and a traditional dance show at Lakki restaurant, on the beach of Aegiali.
The day concluded with the Opening night of the Convention and the 6th International Short Tourism Film Festival of Amorgos, which took place at Aegialis Hotel & Spa.
On the second day, participants were introduced to Kato Meria, the rural area of Amorgos, where they had the chance to walk along the path from Vroutsi village to the Hellenistic Tower of Agia Triada, continuing to the settlement of Arkesini, where lunch was offered at Marouso restaurant. In continuation, participants visited the blacksmith workshop of Mr Giorgos Koveos, before departing to the Monastery of Agios Georgios Valsamitis, where sister Irini presented the history of the ancient water oracle that was located on the site and the condition of the Monastery today.
In the evening, the screenings and lectures of the second day of the Convention and Festival took place at Aegialis Hotel & Spa.
On the third day, participants were guided to the Byzantine Monastery of Panagia Chozoviotissa, where they admired the architecture of this important monument, before continuing to a walk through the picturesque alleys of the capital Chora and the archaeological museum. In continuation, participants visited the church of Agios Georgios in Rachidi and were offered lunch at Mythos restaurant in Katapola, before departing for Aegialis Hotel & Spa, for the screenings and lectures of the third day of the Convention and Festival.
The fourth and last day of the Convention began with a path cleaning workshop, on the path from the village of Potamos to Asfontylitis, an abandoned rural settlement. Participants continued their tour by visiting the Hellenistic tower of Richti and had lunch and coffee at café-bar Maestro in Ormos Aegialis.
The day concluded with the final lecture and the official closing ceremony of the Convention. Following the final screenings of the International Short Tourism Film Festival, the Festival winners were announced by the President of the Jury, Mr John Driedonks. Three prizes were awarded, based on the vote of the Jury, one People’s Choice Prize and one Special Jury Prize. The three winners were awarded a marble sculpture, by sculptor Mr Nikos Karpouzis.
The 1st Prize was awarded to «Greek Tourism – An Eternal Journey» from Greece, directed by Antonis Kioukas, for the promotion of the eternal culture and beauty of Greece.
The 2nd Prize was awarded to “Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Timelapse/Hyperlapse” from United Arab Emirates, directed by Kirill Neiezhmakov, for the dynamic shooting of hard to reach places of the city.
The 3rd Prize was awarded to «Heraklion – Where the thread of history begins» from Greece, directed by Theo Papadoulakis, for the aesthetic approach of Crete’s history.
The People’s Choice Prize was awarded to “Crete, the island inside you – Greek Easter Daydreaming”, directed by Theo Papadoulakis.
The Special Jury Prize was awarded to “Amorgos”, directed by William Scott, Kyle & Steve Muza.
The speeches presented during the Convention inspired a discussion on issues of sustainable and alternative tourism, completing the direct experience participants had and their introduction to the natural and cultural wealth of Amorgos.
The need for new approaches in adjusting the touristic product was pointed out, according to current trends in the travel sector, but most importantly in alignment with the protection of the natural and cultural heritage.
The conclusions of the 13th International Convention YPERIA 2015 highlight once more the importance and prospects created by international gatherings and events, as through their participation visitors transmit their knowledge and experience to the world, thus promoting Amorgos and Greece as a destination, as well as the benefits of alternative, sustainable tourism.
President of Women’s Cultural Association Of Tholaria.
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