Travel campaign: Explore Baltic manors

More than 130 historic manor houses and castles in three Baltic countries will open their doors to the visitors in summer 2018. The manor associations of three countries have joined their forces to organize a cross-border event to visualize the density of manor network in these countries; to highlight the significance of the manors as drivers of cultural, economic and regional development in the past as well as today. Visitors are expected from May 24th till Sept 16th.

While celebrating centenaries of the Baltic countries the associations of manors and castles of three countries unite to demonstrate symbolic continuation of the Baltic chain.
The past as well as the present day of Baltic countries is rich for its challenging contradictions both for their legacy as well as intercultural dialogue. One of these intriguing themes is the fate of the manors through the 20th century. The former carriers of political power, architectural and cultural glory; birthplaces of well-known world explorers, artists, writers, scientists, etc. have witnessed new functions, but even more the abandonment and decay during 20th century. The renaissance of the legacy of the manors started very slowly in the 1980s; the first studies and conservation works paved the way to the reuniting with European cultural area in 1991.
Since then the states, municipalities, heritage authorities, but most of all hundreds of private owners have dedicated their time, resources and energy to preserve and revitalize the former glory of the manors. The contemporary challenge is to restore the position as the driver of rural economic and cultural development in the urbanizing societies.

The contemporary manor owners formed national associations in early 2000s to create a platform to exchange knowledge and support each other. For the first time the associations of three Baltic countries have joined forces to create a common visitor game to visualize the density of manor network, to explore the similarities and differences, to witness the effort of the people who work hard to preserve our common heritage.

The range of manors open to the visitors in 2018 is outstanding. Visitors are invited to manors already well-known for their professional restoration, interesting museums, excellent services or high level cultural activities. But there are many more to explore, small or big, in better or worse condition. Each and every of them is a testimony of bygone times and is already or has a potential to influence the cultural and economic development of the area.

The symbol of the travel campaign is a key – a reference to the manor or castle opening doors to the new discoveries in cultural heritage. Visitors will collect the symbolic keys as a memory of experience and inspiration experienced.

The travel campaign is dedicated to the centenaries of the restoration of the Republics of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia and European Year of Cultural Heritage as well as to so many individuals and institutions who work with strong mission to safeguard this unique heritage.

Visitors are expected from May 24th till September 16th.

May 17th at 1.00-3.00 p.m. Press conference in Latvia 100 Information Centre: National Library of Latvia, Mūkusalas iela 3, Riga, please register [email protected]
May 24th Opening event in Alatskivi manor, Estonia.
May 24-25th Opening event – Open Doors Days in 26 manors, Latvia
October 28th Closing event in Latvia (to be specified).

The aim of the visitor campaign is to open a huge variety of manors throughout the whole summer and therefore the number of open manors varies day by day. It is important to check always out which manors are open on the day of Your travel. Information on the open manors, opening hours and events will be available from mid-May.
Visitors are invited to collect stamps or stickers for every visit on a participant card available in every participating manor. Everyone collecting more than 5 stickers from home country and 10 from neighbors will participate in the lottery of awards. The awards donated by the participating manors will be drawn at the Closing event.



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