The rich morphology of the Meteora – Pyli Geopark area allows the visitor to participate in various educational activities about the natural monuments and points of interest of the Geopark that are both informative and entertaining. Through interactive activities, both locals and visitors have the opportunity to come into contact with the cultural and geological uniqueness of the area. It is particularly important that the Geopark is a place familiar to all, with the primary factor being human respect for nature and the historical monuments it hosts.
In this vein, the Meteora – Pyli Geopark focuses, with its work and collaborations, in the following educational and informational axes:
1. Information and awareness activities & projects in areas such as:
- Tackling climate change and natural hazards
- Sustainability and management of natural resources
- Plans and practices for the protection and management of the natural Environment
- Getting to know the flora, fauna, and endemic species of the area
- Promotion of natural, environmental, and cultural heritage
- Development of alternative forms of tourism
2. Creation of educational material in collaboration with Education Departments, Universities, and Education Centers for the Environment and Sustainability
3. Elaboration of research programs for Greek and International Universities. Our collaborations usually focus on the departments of
- Geography and Geoenvironment
- Geology and Paleontology
- History and Archaeology
- Mineral Resources and Engineering
4. Field exercises in the Geopark for schoolchildren and university students and organization of conferences and training seminars for academics and teachers
5. Educational projects and actions to inform and raise awareness about the geological and cultural heritage of the Geopark. In collaboration with schools, universities, and other educational institutions, specialists, experts and scientists, non-governmental organizations, other agencies, and relevant stakeholders acting in the area
“Walking in the footsteps of god Asclepius”
Meteora-Pyli Geopark celebrates International Environment Day and hosts “Walking in the footsteps of god Asclepius” on June 6th, 2023. This unique educational activity, addressed to Primary Education students, aims to highlight the connection of the environment with history, tradition, and science. It includes hiking on the paths of the Meteora – Pyli Geopark in the area of Koziakas, picnic, and creative projects.
It is said that Asclepius, the god of Medicine according to ancient Greek Mythology, collected his herbs from a rich variety of unique endemic aromatic and medicinal plants on the mountain of Koziakas, which today forms part of the Meteora – Pyli Geopark. Even today, rare species of herbs thrive in the area, as well as mountain tea and oregano. Through the activity, children will be able to learn in an experiential and fun way how nature has become, over the years, a protagonist in mythology, tradition, and local history, as well as the science of medicine.
Students will remember the story of Asclepius, and learn about his importance as a god of Greek mythology and as the originator of the hero-healer archetype, who has been inextricably linked to the healing power of nature and its value in medicine.
Practical/experiential action piece
The students will hike on the paths of the Geopark Meteora – Pyli in the area of Koziakas, following the footsteps of the god Asklepios. They will come into contact with the plants and herbs of the area and learn how they are used, which ones have curative/therapeutic/medicinal properties, which ones can be included in our diet, etc.
As part of the activity, there can be a picnic break where the children will get to know local flavors: they will taste the traditional honey from the wild flowers of the area and enjoy mountain tea from Koziakas.
At the end of the activity, each child will have collected plants, which will be “united” in a classroom collage, together with drawings and information about each one: the Asclepius plant log.