The story of The Dance of Death

Once upon a time in the small village of Hrastovlje, nestled in the rolling hills of southwestern Slovenia, stood a humble church. This church, known as the Church of the Holy Trinity, was no ordinary place of worship. The Church of Hrastovlje, as it was called, was built in the late 15th century by a group of skilled craftsmen. It is said that the church was built on the site of an earlier church that had been destroyed during the Ottoman invasions of the region. The interior of the church is decorated with beautiful, colourful frescoes depicting scenes from the Bible and images of saints and martyrs. One of the most famous frescoes in the Church of Hrastovlje is the Dance of Death. This eerie and haunting fresco shows a series of skeletons leading people from all walks of life to their final resting place. Over the years, the church of Hrastovlje has been restored and conserved to ensure that its stunning frescoes and unique architecture can be admired by generations to come. Today, the church is a popular tourist attraction and a popular symbol of Slovenia’s rich cultural heritage. For the people of Hrastovlje, the church is not just a building, but a sacred place that has deep spiritual significance. In the surrounding area, locals offer Istrian food, accommodation and hiking routes.

Why is it regenerative?

The Hrastovlje church and its conservation efforts represent regenerative tourism through the restoration of historical and artistic treasures. In addition, the local community offers gastronomic experiences, accommodations and hiking trails in Istria, further enriching the visitor experience while supporting the region’s economy.

Project partners met in Aveiro on the 14th and 15th of September 2023. It was the perfect opportunity to visit the destination with regenerative glasses on, to understand its many assets but also some of the challenges the destination is facing. Face to face project meetings always provide the partners with the unique opportunity to learn about the work of the hosting partner and get valuable insights about the destination. In this case partners were hosted by the dedicated team of management and tourism professionals of the University of Aveiro who shared a wealth of insights about a city that was new to many of the participants.

The Enforce project is well on track when it comes to the project work plan, which means that after having completed the Best Practice collection of innovative examples about storytelling for regeneration and also the Storyteller’s Guide, partners used the meeting to discuss the development of the Enforce Training Programme.

For the next few months partners will be working on developing the content in line with guidelines provided by the University of Usak, our project partner from Turkey.
The course should be available for piloting in January/February 2024 and will also be available in the partner languages once all translations are finalised.

The ENFORCE team met in the beautiful city of Luxembourg for its kick-off meeting. It took place at the premises of the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Luxembourg (also known as CCIL), which opened its doors to warmly welcome all partners.

The team was aware of the importance of this first meeting and approached it with the same enthusiasm, as it plays an important role in building strong bonds that will contribute to the success of the entire cooperation. With the common goal of building a solid foundation, the participants discussed in depth the first steps required for the project ENFORCE.

During this visit, the project objectives were discussed in depth to ensure that each partner has a comprehensive understanding of the overarching goals. The outcome of the kick-off meeting was extremely satisfying for all partners and generated enthusiasm among the team. It was a success and left everyone inspired and energised.

The journey of ENFORCE has officially begun and with the collective expertise of the committed partners, there is no doubt that it will thrive and achieve remarkable results.


“The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein”

Project N: 2022-1-LU01-KA220-VET-000089887

© 2024 Enforce Project
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