The Rotunda, with its unique interior mosaics, is one of the most important monuments of the late Roman world. [Ministry of Culture]
Google Arts & Culture Initiative, an online platform for photos and videos of artwork and cultural artifacts from around the world, has added to its collection the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Thessaloniki.
Thessaloniki: An Open Air Museum of Early Christian and Byzantine Art includes fascinating photographs, videos and interactive street-walk features of the city’s ancient and Byzantine ruins, which were collectively inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1988.
Among the sites are the 8-kilometre-long fortification walls, built during the reign of Emperor Theodosius, the Rotunda, famous for its early Christian mosaics, the church of Agia Sophia, and the famous White Tower.
The highly successful Google Arts & Culture platform, launched in 2011, uses high-resolution images and a suite of interactive features, including Gallery View, to enable virtual visitors to explore artwork, sites, and galleries at a number of museums and partner institutions around the world.
The addition of Thessaloniki’s famous sites and monuments to the multilingual platform, introduced in collaboration with Thessaloniki Tourism Organization, is part of Google’s ongoing promotion of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Engagement is doubly useful as UNESCO promotes destinations that appear on the Google Arts and Culture platform through a variety of methods, including its own websites, social media and newsletters.
The Regional Vice President of the Metropolitan Unit of Thessaloniki and Head of the Tourism Organization of Thessaloniki, Ms. Voula Batulido commented: “The promotion of UNESCO monuments in Thessaloniki on the specialized platform is in addition to its presentation by Thessaloniki Tourism Organization. The long-running project brings together, in both print media and digital, information for educational purposes and for the promotion of cultural tourism, with the support of UNESCO”.
You can see a Google view of the UNESCO monuments in Thessaloniki here.
This article first appeared on Greece Is (www.greece-is.com), the Kathimerini publishing initiative.