A total of 32 representatives from the Spanish municipalities that make up the Route of Networks emperor Charles V met on the morning of 11th June, in virtual format, to discuss various issues related to the network and projects to be developed in the coming months, focused on energising these cities with initiatives and activities of varying significance.
Thus, both the president of the network, Miguel Angel Martín Ramos, and its managing director, Quintín Correas, emphasized the projects that are already underway, such as the Laredo-Yuste Cycle Route, planned for the beginning of October; a signaling project that, as in the previous case, the meetings and the contact with the competent authorities have been postponed until the situation is normalized; the summer course / Yuste Campus "Charles V and the sea: the circumnavigation of Magellan-El Cano and the age of spices". The dates have been moved from September 21st to 25th in online format, following the indications of the Yuste Foundation, the main promoter of this course; and the study of the project of the European School of Gastronomy and Tourism Management, which contemplates three axes: quality, tourism and history. A school that will allow the value of gastronomy as a tourist attraction to be extended to the entire Network, promoting the recovery and/or adaptation of the recipe book of the time in each territory, and sharing a project to strengthen the professionals of the sector, both in the hotel and restaurant industry.
Likewise, agreements reached by the network of routes were also announced at the meeting, such as the collaboration agreement with the Teatro Real de Madrid with the aim of promoting the historical and heritage sites of the memory of Emperor Charles V. For the years 2020 and 2021, this collaboration is focused on the following parallel activities in the official programme of the Teatro Real de Madrid: opera RUSALKA, The Season of the Witch, at the Palace of the Counts of Osorno in Pasarón de la Vera (Cáceres) on 14 and 27 November 2020. The opera SIGFRIED, with a visit and tasting of ecological wine with the D. O. Vino de Rueda on February 13 and March 14, 2021; and the opera PETER GRIMES, which includes a tour of the old town of Laredo (Cantabria) with an explanation and recreation of the fishing arts of the sixteenth century in the Cantabrian Sea on April 8 and May 11, 2021.
During the meeting, the Spanish partners were informed of the granting of subsidies for two projects: Erasmus+ KA105: Let's cook our heritage, let's cook our future and Erasmus+ KA105: Circular Cultural Tourism, whose development will be an incentive of interest for projects presented by the members of the network of routes. During the last few months another five projects have been submitted to European calls (Erasmus +, Europe for Citizens, Creative Europe), and are awaiting resolution. In addition, the project "European Cultural Routes as key actors in the promotion of European cultural heritage", presented last November 2019 to the call of the Creative Europe programme for small-scale cooperation projects, should be added. It has a total budget of 279,990 euros, of which the European Union will finance 60% (167,994 euros). It is an initiative led by the Cooperation network of routes of Emperor Charles V, which will cooperate with other European routes, a consortium that includes the Association Strada Europea della Ceramica (based in Faenza, Italy), the Association ATRIUM on the architecture of totalitarian regimes (based in Forlì, Italy) and the European Association for the Preservation and Promotion of Jewish Culture and Heritage (based in Luxembourg).
On the other hand, the Spanish partners have also been informed of the state of the tourist marketing of the network of routes Charles V, with very favourable prospects until September. In this sense, several experiences had been budgeted for families and small groups during the month of February, of which two had already been carried out in Cantabria. For the rest of the months there was a total of 18 requests for weekend experiences for Extremadura, 14t for Cantabria and 16t for the Wine Route of rueda, all of them until May, and which have been cancelled by the COVID-19. However, the prospects for the future are quite positive, as stressed by the head of the agency A6 Route, Francisco José Macías Muñoz, develops of the aforementioned package tours.
Finally it was highlighted that the mentioned one is the first experience of commercialization of the network of routes Charles V, and that in the successive developments of commercialization the rest of the territories of the Network of the Routes of the Emperor Charles V will be included.
On another note, the Spanish partners of the "Cultural Routes of Spain" project, a tourist brand endorsed by the Secretary of State for Tourism and Trade of the Spanish Government, have been informed. It currently includes five Spanish routes, constituting a representative and thematic sample of the country's territorial and cultural diversity: Paths of Prehistoric Cave Art, the Via de la Plata Route, the Path of the Cid, network of routes Charles V and the Paths of Passion. The main objective of this collaboration is to present an attractive, well-defined and quality offer within the international tourist panorama that promotes the values of Spanish Cultural Heritage and makes it possible to know the artistic, natural, ethnographic and gastronomic diversity of Spain through its history, channelled through themed routes of high heritage value at a global level. But due to the situation caused by the pandemic, promoting our destinations in the national tourism has become our priority, without abandoning small actions of international tourism promotion, and proposals of dynamization proposed by partners such as Valdestillas; or the collaboration with the Wine Route of Rueda for the implementation of joint projects in terms of promotion of the members of our routes whose location is within that route.