Greece is slowly strengthening the connection between culture and tourism, managing this way to create “brands” for its tourism product as well as competitive advantages compared to other neighboring countries, according to Culture Minister Lina Mendoni.
Speaking during the Olympia Forum II session that took place recently in Ancient Olympia, Mendoni referred to the added value that culture creates for tourism and the need to achieve tourism development by linking culture, tourism and the environment.
The minister stressed that cultural investments bring tourism flows and benefit local economies.
Meanwhile, international research indicates that cultural tourism covers 40 percent of the tourism economy.
“Ancient Olympia and Delphi are two very distinctive cases [of culture and tourism] as their viability highly depends their archaeological sites,” Mendoni said.
The minister also referred to the collaboration between the ministries of culture and tourism, and invited local authorities to join the efforts to connect Greece’s rich culture with tourism.
As she said, the culture ministry has already proposed the establishment of five Cultural Routes in Northern Greece, Central Macedonia, Easter Macedonia-Thrace, Epirus and Western Greece, which would connect culture with significant archaeological sites.
Mendoni participated in a panel discussion titled “In pursuit of a local heritage brand: how can regions work together to create a unique cultural and tourist product” along with Deputy Tourism Minister Sofia Zacharaki, Sparti Mayor Petros Doukas, Patra University Professor Panagiotis Dimopoulos and Aldemar Group CEO Alexandros Angelopoulos.