Newsletter October 2022


EFFORTS Europe Annual Congress 2022 in Kaunas (LT)

Kaunas, as the European Capital of Culture 2022, was the venue of the EFFORTS Europe Annual Congress 2022. Fortress experts from 10 countries met at the beginning of October to discuss European cooperation and to learn about developments in the Kaunas fortification system in workshops. The reactivation of the former Baltic Fort Route (EU-BSR project 2005-2007) as a FORTE CULTURA Cluster of "Baltic Fortresses" was also intensively discussed. In addition, the European Fortress Summer 2022 concluded in Kaunas. The EFFORTS Award 2022 was presented to Olha Tikhonova, representing the Ukrainian forts. Report and presentations

Conference "Fortification Systems - from Border Sites to European Cultural Corridors"

Forte Marghera, located on the bridge to the lagoon city of Venice, provided a worthy setting for a 2-day conference in mid-September that brought together fortress experts from Italy, Finland, Germany, Poland, Croatia, Spain, Belgium, Austria and Ukraine. The event, hosted by Fondazione Forte Marghera and supported by EFFORTS and FORTE CULTURA, offered best practices in the field of fortress rehabilitation, museology, tourism, digitalisation and much more. During the conference, a Declaration for the creation of a Joint Scientific Committee (JSC) was signed by EFFORTS, FORTE CULTURA and Fondazione Forte Marghera in order to establish a multidisciplinary pool of transnational experts as well as a Scientific Center on fortifications in Forte Marghera.

5th symposium on the expansion of fortress cooperation on the Upper Rhine

Youth Encounters and Inclusion was the topic of this year's conference at the beginning of September in the town hall of the fortress town of Germersheim. A good 30 representatives of the Upper Rhine fortress monuments learned about project ideas, funding opportunities and best practices in the field of youth encounters and inclusion. Based on the exciting presentations, the participants developed their own ideas for the implementation of inclusive offers and youth exchange in their fortress monuments in a workshop. Report (PDF)

Banja Luka (BA): Final Conference FORTITUDE Project

The Interreg-IPA-CBC project FORTITUDE came to its crowning conclusion in Bosnia in early June. The event presented the project partners' outstanding results in the field of regional and cross-border developments for fortress tourism. Also FORTE CULTURA and EFFORTS, who led the expert workshop on Heritage Digitisation and Promotion in Karlovac (HR) in 2021 as part of the project, presented their networks and signed a Memorandum of Understanding for future cooperation with the forts in Sibenik, Banja Luka, Karlovac and Bar.


Tourisme Destination Alsace (ADT) becomes FORTE CULTURA member

Alsace Destination Tourisme (ADT) is the travel agency of the European Community of Alsace and is responsible for the development and promotion of tourism, especially in cross-border cooperation. Due to the varied French and German history of Alsace, there are many fortified monuments in the region. Together with FORTE CULTURA, the ADT would like to further strengthen this cultural heritage and sustainably expand the already numerous tourist offers. In addition, the ADT is an important partner for the FORTE CULTURA cluster of fortresses on the Upper Rhine.

Wehrgeschichtliches Museum Rastatt (WGM) becomes FORTE CULTURA station on the Upper Rhine

The Wehrgeschichtliche Museum Rastatt (WGM) is located in the south wing of the residential palace in Rastatt and deals with modern German military history. On an area of around 1,500 m², the museum offers an overview of German, and in particular southwest German, military history from 1500 to 1918 and shows the connection between the military, the state and society. Director Dr Alexander Jordan is also a member of the FORTE CULTURA Scientific Advisory Board. Rastatt was also one of five fortresses of the German Confederation, along with Ulm, Mainz, Landau and Luxembourg.

Fortified Ideal City Terezín becomes second FORTE CULTURA station in the Czech Republic

Terezín is one of around 50 fortified ideal cities in Europe. Terezín, named after Empress Maria Theresa, was built by the Habsburgs against Prussia in 1780-90 in the area where the Eger River meets the Elbe. The imposing ideal fortress city with an underground mine system some 20 km long is one of the largest fortresses in Europe. Theresienstadt achieved sad fame during the Second World War as a Nazi ghetto and prison. Today, the Small Fortress is a reminder of the dark past, while the Fortress City represents the fortress with its military history.

Fortified Ideal City Josefov complements the FORTE CULTURA cluster of "Bohemian Fortresses" in the Czech Republic

Josefstadt Fortress is located in Jaromer, in Eastern Bohemia, near the Polish border at the confluence of the Aupa and Mettau rivers with the Elbe. It was built by the Habsburgs against Prussia in 1780-87 and renamed in memory of Emperor Josef II (formerly Fortress Ples). The so-called twin city of Terezín (Theresienstadt) is also a fortified ideal city and, with an area of 289 ha, is also one of the largest fortifications in Europe. In FORTE CULTURA it complements both the cluster of "Elbe Fortresses" and the new cluster of "Bohemian Fortresses" with Terezín and Prague.

Modlin Fortress becomes new FORTE CULTURA station in Poland

One of the largest fortresses in Europe now complements the FORTE CULTURA stations in Poland. The Modlin fortress system is located 30 minutes north of Warsaw at the strategically important confluence of the Vistula, Narew and Wkra rivers. The Swedish King Charles Gustav first used the advantage of the location in 1660 and built a fortified camp. Napoleon had a fortification system built from 1809 onwards, which fell to Russia in 1813 and was expanded in several stages until 1915. Today, the Fundacja Nasza Historia company is developing parts of the fortress for sustainable use. FORTE CULTURA travellers can look forward to an exciting location with many impressions.


Germersheim (DE): Another Aktion Mensch project breaks down barriers

After the successful completion of the project "Durchblick - Germersheim Erkennen", Germersheim has now received a second grant to reduce barriers and expand inclusive tourism offers in the fortress town. The project was applied for by FORTE CULTURA as part of the Aktion Mensch programme "#1 Barrier Less". With 5,000€, two additional locations will be integrated into the tour for blind and visually impaired people and a flyer in Braille will be produced. An additional application by FORTE CULTURA, together with the fortress city of Koblenz, is currently awaiting approval. Would you also like to have "#1 Barrier Less" in your fortress? Contact our network office!

Interreg 6A starts

In many European border regions, the calls for the new funding period for projects for cross-border cooperation between neighbouring countries are currently starting. Find out in good time about the funding opportunities in your region and form project partnerships, FORTE CULTURA will support you. For example, the Terzezín Conference in April 2022 was a funded project in the Elbe-Labe Region (DE-CZ) of the Königstein and Terezín Fortresses with FORTE CULTURA .

FORTE CULTURA Pilot- and Study Tours

Montenegro – Croatia – Bosnia Herzegovina

The exciting FORTE CULTURA study tour guided by Dr Hans-Rudolf Neumann in August 2022 led to the fascinating fortress heritage around the Bay of Kotor, with fortress buildings of the Venetians, the Ottomans, the Habsburg monarchy, World War II and the Cold War. In addition, the fortresses in Trebinje, Herceg-Novi, Dubrovnik, Tivat and Budva were visited. Report


For 2023, a study tour to Morocco is planned, Deadline Dec. 2022.
(Photo: H.-R. Neumann)


Originally planned for 2020, the FORTE CULTURA study tour with Dr Hans-Rudolf Neumann could only be carried out in April 2022 due to the pandemic. The study tour led from Yerevan to Ambered, Dashtadem, Gyumri, Vandzor, Lori, Haghpat, Dilijan, Sevan, Bjni, Yeghegis, Tatev and back via Smataberd. Armenia's fortified heritage dates back to the Christian religious struggle against the surrounding religions, including fortified monasteries that are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. (Photo: H.-R. Neumann)


EFS 2022 finalised during EFFORTS Congress in Kaunas


Since the kick-off on 6 April at the FORTE CULTURA Fortress Conference in Terezín (CZ), around 100 fortress events in more than 15 countries have taken part in the European Fortress Summer 2022. The European Fortress Summer, powered by EFFORTS and FORTE CULTURA, now came to a close in Kaunas at the EFFORTS Annual Congress. FORTE CULTURA presented the new Fortress Summer video and the Ukrainian fortresses were symbolically honoured with this year's EFFORTS Award. The European Fortress Summer 2023 starts at the end of March in Šibenik (HR).

Registrieren Sie Ihre Events für mehr Reichweite !

A simple registration form, a few pictures and/or videos and a link to the event are all you need to participate in the European Fortress Summer. Benefit from more publicity and high reach by registering your main events for the European Fortress Summer 2023. Registration is free of charge. All registered events take part in the "EFFORTS Award 2023". Here the best location / event will be awarded. The award will be presented at the EFFORTS Annual Congress in Maastricht (BE) in October 2023.


Certification program for Tour Guides

FORTE CULTURA guides offer very special insights into the fascinating fortress worlds on our cultural route. Whether in historical costumes, on underground paths or with exclusive content, the tours with certified guides are always an experience.
You too can qualify as a tour guide with a FORTE CULTURA certificate.


New FORTE CULTURA travel catalogue and travel platform

The network office is currently working on the new FORTE CULTURA travel catalogue for the stations of the European Cultural Route. The catalogue will be presented in spring 2023 and is intended to encourage travel companies to offer tours along the FORTE CULTURA in the future.


In addition, a joint travel platform for the distribution of FORTE CULTURA fortress tours and guided tours for guests is being created with Martin Kaule Reisen. FORTE CULTURA stations are exempt from the recruitment fee.

Interactive digital games in FORTE CULTURA fortresses

From January, FORTE CULTURA stations will have the opportunity to independently create and offer app-based interactive games in their fortresses (e.g. quiz, fortress treasure hunt, learning trail, etc.). With the FORTE CULTURA licence, member stations of the Cultural Route will be able to use the flexible tool of our partner Actionbound at a significantly reduced price.

Merchandising for FORTE CULTURA stations

Take advantage of the merchandising opportunities with FORTE CULTURA!

FORTE CULTURA wall calendars 2023 with pictures of your fortress, torches or lanyards can complement the offer of your souvenir shop.


The Euro souvenir voucher in the FORTE CULTURA Edition is also a popular collector's item among souvenir hunters all over Europe, and at the same time will sustainably improve your budget. In connection with the FORTE CULTURA framework contract, members receive discounted conditions.



Dates 2022/2023

Blog image

  • 7 December 2022: FORTE CULTURA General Assembly 2022, Online
  • 9-11 February 2023: Symposium on the 20th century fortress heritage of the fortified region of A Coruna, Ferrol (ES)
  • 23-25 March 2023: FORTMED Conference, Pisa (IT)
  • 29-31 March 2023: FORTE CULTURA Tourism and Guide Congress, Sibenik (HR)
    - International Tourism and Guide Congress.
    - Workshop "Sustainable Fortress Tourism and Inclusion on the Adriatic Sea".
    - FORTE CULTURA General Assembly 2023
    - Launch of the European Fortress Summer 2023
  • October 2023: EFFORTS Annual Congress, Maastricht (BE)


More News and former FORTE CULTURA newsletter.


Since July 2020, regular FORTE CULTURA members are automatically associate members in EFFORTS and vice versa. To enable EFFORTS members to enjoy all the benefits of the cultural route in the future, FORTE CULTURA is now offering for ordinary EFFORTS members a welcome discount of 25% on the annual fee for the first 2 years. For further information, please contact the network office.

You are free to unsubscribe from future FORTE CULTURA newsletters.


c/o ECCOFORT, Albertinenstr. 1, 13086 Berlin

Logo EFFORTS Europe