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8 emblematic towns, 11 destinations, 21 specially designed thematic routes based on History, Art, Gastronomy and Nature invite us to discover the Greek Revolution in an experiential way. The "Morias '21" program proves that entertainment and relaxation can be combined with knowledge and knowledge can turn into a very pleasant experience!
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By Mia Kollia
Translated by Alexandros Theodoropoulos
The Greek war of Independence, or the Greek Revolution of 1821, was one of the most crucial history events in the Greek history, as we secured our freedom, our sovereign state and our identity as nation. In 2021, 200 years later, we celebrate this historic event; the proclamation of the Fight for National Freedom and Independence, which led to the establishment of the first independent modern Greek State in 1830, under the name "Hellas" (Greece).
Celebrating the 200th anniversary of the start of the Greek Revolution, the Captain Vassilis and Carmen Constantakopoulos Foundation and TEMES SA, Costa Navarino's developer, created the MORIAS '21 (www.morias21.com) program, in cooperation with Discover Greek Culture. This is an initiative that invites all Greeks worldwide to meet this year in Peloponnese in order to experience the history of the place where the Fight for Independence was established.
Through the thematic routes and the narratives that frame them, visitors have the opportunity to recreate using their imagination the Morias of 1821 in today's Peloponnese, to revive the historical significance of the Revolution in the place where it was established.
In addition, in a country where tourism is based almost exclusively on the history and monuments of ancient times, the routes offer the traveler the opportunity to visit lesser-known landmarks and sights, and to listen to influential stories that need to be told; stories that formed the basis for creation of the modern Greek state.
8 emblematic towns, 11 destinations, 21 specially designed thematic routes invite us to discover the history and the role of each town in the Fight. The thematic routes are enriched with experiences of the History, Art, Gastronomy and Nature of our place. It can be seen as a three-day trip or as a five-day getaway, but one thing is for sure: this year in Morias the history of Greece unfolds there in front of us like never before.
One place, 8 + 3 destinations
An imaginary line connects 8 + 3 large stations, the towns of Morias and their surrounding areas, which played a dominant role in the events of the Revolution. The traveler can browse:
● In Eastern and Western Mani, a stronghold of the unbowed Greeks and their combativeness
● In Kalamata, the first liberated city
● In Tripoli, a symbol of consolidation of the fight
● In the castle of Monemvasia, the first liberated fort
● In Corinth, the first capital of the liberated Greeks
● In Pylos, where the catalytic part of the Revolution took place after the success of the naval battle of Navarino and the creation of the independent Greek state
● In Nafplio, the town of Governor Ioannis Kapodistrias and a field of military conflicts
Starting with Messini, Oichalia and Kyparissia, the routes unfold on lesser known paths of the fight, in a stunning natural landscape.
The routes of Morias ΄21 provide the opportunity and the motivation to the visitors to discover something new on their trip to the Peloponnese. The local communities are highlighted through the program and promoted in a different way than usual, so the visitors and the general public get to know them.
Morias ’21 is a program full of experiences, because it includes history, art, nature, gastronomy and travel, which is not limited to well-known places. For the local communities this means more visitors, more revenue for local professionals and most importantly, more visibility, which is clearly valuable.
At the same time, it is an infrastructure program (digital exhibits, murals, exhibitions, routes, 1821 recipes, marking of ancient trees), which is a legacy and the local communities are proud of the local elements that compose the framework of the Greek Revolution.
History: The journey of a nation - multimedia digital exhibits
The Revolution of 1821 was a bloodshed through shocking battles, months of sieges and heroic victories. These events inspired great painters who created timeless works, which today, modern technology brings to life in front of our eyes.
The beginning of the revolution in Eastern Mani, the fall of Tripoli, the naval battle of Navarino and more, are reconstructed with animation and digital 3D imaging techniques, with a narrative based on the memoirs of Theodoros Kolokotronis who comes to life and takes on the role of our personal tour guide.
The Digital Exhibits are displayed in specially designed rooms on a single screen, in order to experience the glorious moments of our History.
Gastronomy: The Dishes of the Revolution
Through research of the University of Peloponnese and in collaboration with Gastronomos magazine, the ingredients and recipes of that time were identified. These ingredients and the general dietary habits of the Greek revolutionaries were the reference for the creation of a special menu of 12 recipes signed by the famous chef, Lefteris Lazarou.
At the same time, highlighting the great wine tradition of our place, the Master of Wine, Konstantinos Lazarakis, chose for each recipe a special variety of wine from Morias. These gourmet recipes have been adopted by restaurants in the Peloponnese and are offered to visitors.
Nature: The 27 Trees of the Revolution
The nature of Morias couldn’t be missing from the journey in the years of the Revolution. The mother olive of the Koroneiki variety in Kalamata, the palm tree planted by Kapodistrias in Nafplio, the historic plane tree in Agios Floros, where the battles with the army of Ibrahim Pasha took place and the mulberry tree of Papaflessas, are just some of the trees of Peloponnese that have many stories to tell as age-old silent witnesses.
As part of the celebrations of Morias ’21, the trees of the Revolution have special markings and have been included in the 21 special routes of the program. Persistent travelers see them standing arrogantly in front of them, unifying the glorious moments of Greek history with the present. At the same time, a pan-Hellenic student competition "Trees can speak" is organised for students aged 10-14, who are inspired by nature and history and create their own works of art.
Art: The Faces of the Revolution
The portraits of the fighters of 1821 "come out" of the museum to occupy their natural space. Young artists, students and graduates of the Athens School of Fine Arts intervened in the environment of selected towns of the Peloponnese, with 10 public murals of heroes, which became an integral part of modern life and came to life again in the same streets.
Historical moments of the Revolution and portraits of great fighters now emerge unpredictably but in complete harmony with the life of the towns, on buildings and streets in Pylos, Kalamata, Areopolis, Kardamili, Nafplio, Corinth and Tripoli. Among the many works of art inspired by the Greek Revolution, there are some recognisable at first glance. With the technique of dashboards, we see them revive becoming much as they used to be but simultaneously, being so different now.