Local authorities are seeking to include the remote untouched Fraktos Forest in Paranesti near Drama, northern Greece, in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
The goal is for the forest, which is considered the most ecologically virgin in Europe, to be included among candidate areas of Greece in the so-called Tentative List.
The forest, covering an area of approximately 12,000 hectares, is located at the northeastern end of the Rhodope Mountains. According to Drama Forest Director Elsa Konstantinidou, it was discovered in 1970s.
“In 1980 the most untouched part of it, covering an area of 550 hectares, was declared a protected natural monument,” she said, adding that “until 1987 an area of 5,300 hectares acres surrounding it was designated a wildlife refuge.” It is home to over 140 species of birds, 40 species of mammals and hundreds of flora species.