European project VirtualArch

VirtualArch: Visualize to valorize

An interactive app will guide you in discovering the traces of the medieval mining activities on Monte Calisio: a hidden archaeological heritage to protect and valorize.

Monte Calisio and its plateau are located in Trentino, just north-east of the city of Trento, between the upper part of the two valleys Valsugana and Val di Cembra. The area was very popular in ancient times and is well-known for its geological and naturalistic richness. 

In some very old literature sources, Monte Calisio was referred to as Mons Argentarius because of the abundant silver ore found underground there. Mount Calisio was the pilote site of the European project “VirtualArch – Visualize to valorize. For a better utilisation of the hidden archaeological heritage in Central Europe 2014-2020”. The Archaeological Office - Department for Cultural Heritage of the Autonomous Province of Trento was one of the project partners. 

The Monte Calisio plateau shows evidence of some very intensive mining activities, which began during the Middle Ages. An interactive app for mobile devices has been developed to better know and discover this rich hidden cultural heritage. It will be possible to interact with 16 points of interest which are located along the three itineraries managed by the Ecomuseo Argentario: the ‘Canope’ path, the biotope ‘Le Grave’ and the ‘Sentiero degli Gnomi’ (Dwarves’ trail). Furthermore new informative panels were placed along the ‘Canope’ path.

The app and the panels offer a variety of themed tours that explain the ancient mining exploitment,  geology, the Codex Wangianus, extraction techniques, medieval tools. The app can be downloaded and used offline along the paths dedicated to the project: images, 3D reconstructions of the area, virtual and augmented reality and videos regarding the medieval mining activities on Mount Calisio will enrich the visitors’ experience and let them virtually enter in still hidden sites.

Download here the new APP of the VirtualArch project                            

A video will explain how to use the app along the paths on Monte Calisio

Here's a short promotional video  (See the full video in the section below: Insights)


The main goal of the VirtualArch project is to develop transnational strategies in order to report about the archaeological heritage through innovative technologies, to protect and valorize it. From the economic point of view it also aims at developing sustainable tourism offers. The Trentino partner intends within the project to spread the knowledge of the rich cultural heritage in relation to the mining activities on the Argentario plateau and to make it visible and accessible to the public. The valorization of the medieval and modern silver mines and their protection becomes an important reality to be integrated in the cultural and touristic offer of the territory.

The three-year project started in July 2017. The main activities carried out by the Department for Cultural Heritage during the past years were the following: surveys and study of the mining sites in the first phase, and secondly the app development by using the results collected, and the identification of 16 points of interests along the trails managed by the Ecomuseo Argentario. New informative panels were also located along the ‘Canope’ path.

VirtualArch is a project co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund approved within the transnational cooperation Interreg Central Europe programme. Lead partner is the Archaeological Heritage Office of Saxony, Dresden, Germany. Other partners: Department for Cultural Heritage, Province of Trento and Bruno Kessler Foundation, Trento, Italy, Museum of Natural History, Vienna, Austria, Nicolaus Copernicus University, Department for Archaeology, Torun, Poland, Institute of Archaeology of the Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague, Czech Republic, Institute for the Protection of Cultural Heritage of Slovenia, Centre for Preventive Archaeology, Ljubljana, Slovenia and Slovak Academy of Sciences, Institute for Archaeology, Nitra, Slovak Republic, Municipality of Puck, Poland, City of Zadar, Croatia.

The total budget is 2,103,000 euros. 178,000 euros was the budget assigned to the Department for Cultural Heritage of the Autonomous Province of Trento - 80% was co-financed by FESR and 20% by the Italian Government.

This document reflects only the author’s view and the programme authorities are not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.


Full video VirtualArch APP on Mount Calisio of the VirtualArch project 




See the Report on the local TV (TGR) about the VirtualArch project                                                                             


Promotional material     

D.C.7.1 CARTOLINA def 9mb.pdf 6,81 MB 

D.C.7.1 Flyer mining archaeology.pdf 1,77 MB 

D.C.7.1 Flyer PublicArchaeology_def ita_eng.pdf 1,63 MB 

D.C.7.1 Flyer tourism_ita_Eng.pdf 1,42 MB




Further information:


Trailer of the VirtualArch documentary


Provincia autonoma di Trento
Soprintendenza per i beni culturali - Ufficio beni archeologici

part of: Lavori in corso