CASTLES AS A TOURIST CULTURAL PRODUCT IN THE PROVINCE OF ALICANTE (SPAIN): ACTIONS, INITIATIVES AND PROPOSALS
Free (open access)
171 - 179
JUAN ANTONIO MIRA RICO
The province of Alicante has an important number of castles. Their existence is the result of many historical dynamics, as part of al-Andalus, first, and of the crowns of Aragon and Castile, later. In 2016, during the 3rd International Conference on Defence Sites: Heritage and Future, it was explained how municipalities manage their castles in the province of Alicante – a subject developed in the doctoral thesis undertaken at the University of Alicante between 2013 and 2016. This management will be analysed in depth, taking advantage of the opportunity that the 15th International Conference on Studies, Repairs and Maintenance of Heritage Architecture offers. Departing from a sample of 47 fortifications, their role as a tourist cultural product will be studied in two different ways: determining what actions are carried in these castles – like the implementation of guided and/or self-guided visits with a stable schedule, the accomplishment of open days, as well as dramatized visits, their musealisation, etc. – and which global initiatives, like the Vinalopó Castles Route – carried out by the University of Alicante – or the Costa Blanca 100 Castles Route – a tourist brand of the province of Alicante – are being undertaken by the Provincial Council of Alicante. Finally, in view of the historical and heritage interest awakened by these fortifications, some management proposals focused on their use as heritage resources, with a great potential, capable of being transformed into tourist cultural products of quality will be explained.
castles, province of Alicante, tourist cultural product, Vinalopó Castles Route, Costa Blanca 100 Castles Route