rurAllure took part in the Pilgrims Open Horizons 2022 tour along the Via Romea Germanica, with participants from Norway, Denmark, Germany, Austria and Italy.
The event started in Oslo on 3 May and reached Rome on 13 October 2022, after more than 2500 km on foot as part of the Europe-wide pilgrimage movement “Pilgrims Open Horizons” which aims to promote the pilgrimage routes as places of encounters for pilgrims, hosts and local communities.
Started in 2015 as a relay race, this format saw the participation of pilgrims from 15 countries, who walked together from Norway and Calabria to Rome in about four months. In 2022 this initiative was revived and the pilgrims relaunched their journey in June on their way to Rome, arriving on 13 October.
During the walk, Maria Laura Gasparini, Research Fellow and Ph.D. Candidate, and Carlo Rios Chu, student and intern at the Center for Advanced Studies in Tourism at the University of Bologna walked over 100km in 5 days between Ferrara and Ravenna. Along the path, they had a chance to meet local stakeholders and discover the landscapes of the Comune di Argenta and Po Delta Regional Park and Valli di Comacchio in Emilia Romagna, the area rurAllure is working on.
“This initiative aims to motivate pilgrims, cyclists and tourists to stay longer in this area, discovering the less known cultural and natural heritage of this territory, shaped by the presence of water and its management to allow human life. We also distributed the questionnaires for pilgrims en route and left the QR codes of rurAllure in several places. Carlo will work on the analysis of these questionnaires and the profile of pilgrims for his master’s thesis in Tourism Economics and Management Masters Degree” – said Gasparini.