Conceptual development of the trail methodology for the preservation of intangible maritime heritage: A case for the Adriatic coast and islands
- University of Split Croatia, Department of Philosophy, Adriatic Maritime Institute, Kneza Mislava 16, Zagreb 10000, Croatia
- Received 31 May 2015, Accepted 18 September 2015, Available online 21 November 2015
In the Adriatic, the importance in tourism of the small rowing and sailing boats, like the gajeta and other heritage vessels, is clearly relevant, as icons of heritage boats adorn brochures, logos, and their names are bequested to hotels and restaurants. As a symbol, the gajeta stands for the heritage of the island, and the ethics of the place; these constitute an intangible treasure which highlights the lifestyle of the agriculturalist society. However, the distinct experience of the gajeta, or other local boats as a relevant form of tourist activity, is largely missing in the offerings of local tourist information centers and nature parks where they reside. This paper outlines a heritage trail interpretive strategy, which would create a network supporting small local tourist venues that showcase intangible maritime heritage of the coast and islands. The methodology creates an alterative to what is primarily leisure-based tourism that Adriatic counties like Croatia are experiencing in all but the largest cultural monuments and ecological reserves which provide avenues for community-based ecological management in remote regions.
- Community-based management;
- Adaptive co-management;
- Experience economy;
- Integrated rural tourism (IRT)
It is at the local, community level where successful trail networks begin.
Introduction: The concept of a heritage trail
The Croatian coast and islands from the south at the border with Monte Negro to the northern border with Slovenia spans more than 1777 km. Croatia has more than 1200 islands. When the coastlines of the islands and mainland are combined, this 5790 km makes ¼ of the Mediterranean total. 66 islands have settlements of varying sizes, each with a rich cultural diversity that can be found along the way. Different coastal regions and islands have distinct cultural traits that can be seen, in speech, as on the island Vis where the inhabitants of Komiža and Vis town use a different common dialect, and dress and food are also distinctive for each settlement in the archipelago.
The differences in culture can also be found in the varying types of rowing and sailing boats found along the coast, heritage vessels.1 Each locality has developed its own type of distinct watercraft, as with the two types small sailing boats, the gajeta from Murter ( Photo 1) and Korčula, the small cargo boat, bracera from Brač ( Photo 2), the offshore fishing vessel, falkuša from Komiža ( Photo 3), and the utilitarian skiff, batana of Rovinj ( Photo 4). There are many more types of vessels that exist and are still being used along the coast, but these are just a few of the more prevalent examples.