Δίκτυο βυζαντινών ναών στην κεντρική Εύβοια: σχεδιάζοντας μια πολιτιστική διαδρομή στα ίχνη των Ελλήνων αρχόντων της Λατινοκρατίας
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The island of Euboea has been subject to a substandard level of cultural heritage management. Cultural routes are an important tool as far as cultural management is concerned. The aim of this article is to present a proposal concerning a cultural route in Central Euboea, and the central aspect is a group of Late Byzantine churches with similar architectural and artistic characteristics. The main route includes five sites of interest, each one of them focused on a Byzantine church. The route can easily embrace some optional visits to a group of monuments with similar characteristics. Following the main road from Chalkis to Kymi, the route leads us at Agios Dimitrios in Makrihori. The Church of the Dormition of the Virgin in Spelies follows, and the next visit is the village of Oxilithos, at Agios Nikolaos Ritzanon. The fourth stop is at the Church of the Metamorphosis of Christ in Pyrgi and the trail ends at Agios Dimitrios in Hania Avlonariou. The information derived from the architecture, frescoes and inscriptions of these churches contributes to our knowledge concerning sponsors in the region of Central Euboea in the early 14th century. Through the evidence provided by this group of monuments, the visitor understands that artistic and building activity on the island was still vigorous in the early 14th century and thus can easily conceive the socio-cultural ‘scenery’ of this era. As a conclusion, the proposed cultural tour could become a beneficial tool for the culture management of Euboea. The main objective of the plan is to create a pole of attraction for ‘cultural visitors’ through the proposed network, thus leading to general touristic development in the region. The expansion of the proposed route is dominated by factors concerning the visitors, such as the available time, and their age, knowledge and interests, and can work as a case study for framing other similar routes in Euboea.