June 10, 1997, New York, NY -- The UNESCO World Heritage Centre today announced its support for BikeAbout's educational Internet adventure in the Mediterranean as they endeavor to increase awareness of, and access to, World Heritage sites in the region.
BikeAbout-the Mediterranean is the first fully "wired" circumnavigation of the Mediterranean Sea by bicycle. The all-volunteer, international expedition and team effort is designed to foster an understanding and sense of unity in the Mediterranean through the use of modern technology and cycling. The UNESCO World Heritage Centre will help make it possible for BikeAbout to access and learn more about World Heritage sites in the region and then share that information with an Internet-based web of schools and partner organizations in the Mediterranean and the U.S.
Beginning in September, a team of four (or five) BikeAbout riders equipped with computers will set out eastward along the Moroccan coast and bicycle the full circumference of the Mediterranean, finishing in Gibraltar in June, more than 10,000 miles later. The journey will take BikeAbout and an excited Internet network of schools and enterprises through Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt, the Gaza Strip, Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, Greece, Albania, Yugoslavia (Montenegro), Bosnia, Croatia, Slovenia, Italy, Monaco, France, Spain, and Gibraltar. (Unfortunately, current political and security considerations will require the riders to make detours around Algeria and Libya.)
The many World Heritage sites in these countries located along the BikeAbout itinerary will serve as points of interest and activity for the BikeAbout riders. Nation- and region-specific issues, as well as discussions of the more general notion of world heritage, prompted by the historical, cultural and natural importance of these sites, will be built into the various activities depending on BikeAbout's presence in the Mediterranean.
BikeAbout is a non-profit organization specializing in Internet adventures that promote education, peace and cooperative understanding through bicycling and the improved use of technology in all learning environments. BikeAbout aims to increase awareness of and access to world regions and their people by traveling by bicycle, meeting the people, and using the unique capabilities of the Internet to share information with students, teachers and other on-lookers around the world. Networked schools and enterprises following the Journeys via the BikeAbout site on the World Wide Web (http://www.bikeabout.org) join in a shared educational adventure of discovery and exchange. The subsequent web of contacts spun by BikeAbout riders and collaborators helps make it possible to continue to share information about the world with the world.