The “Routes of the Olive Tree” are cultural itineraries designed to promote the olive-producing and material civilisation of the Mediterranean regions and beyond. They are organised by the OTRoutes “Routes of the Olive Tree” Cultural Foundation, a non-profit, non-governmental organisation based in Kalamata (Greece).
The annual programme of activities is implemented by an international scientific team in collaboration with members of the OTRoutes network and partner organisations in all Mediterranean countries.
The “Routes of the Olive Tree” were officially recognised in 2003 by the Unesco (166th Sess Ex.Co) as a “World Cultural Route for Intercultural Dialogue and Sustainable Development” and in 2005 as a Cultural Route of the Council of Europe. These are two important distinctions that confirm the dynamism of the initiative and encourage those who launched it and are working to achieve its objectives.
Our aim is to…
- List and promote the olive-growing and material civilisation of the Mediterranean regions for the benefit of local economies.
- Create “synergies” between cultural heritage, tourism and sustainable development.
- Encourage intercultural dialogue, a prerequisite for fruitful partnerships, the exchange of know-how and prosperity.
We are a non-profit organisation, independent of political ideologies and economic interests.
We do not receive public or European funding for our activities; our income comes from our members, friends and partners.
We are resisting the economic situation, which is limiting our scope for action, leading to the desertification of villages – the hearts of local tradition – and condemning vulnerable social groups to extinction…