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Ulysses Project Exploration of the Vjosa River an Epic Expedition for Environmental Conservation

Ulysses Project Exploration of the Vjosa River an Epic Expedition for Environmental Conservation


Progetto Ulisse logo South Face Paradise Progetto Ulisse Parco nazionale del fiume Vjosa Albania Europa
In a world increasingly aware of the need to protect and preserve the environment, initiatives combining adventure and activism are emerging, promoting the conservation of Earth’s most precious natural places. One such initiative is the Exploration of the Vjosa River, an ambitious project born from the idea of Carlo and Gabriele, two outdoor and environmental conservation enthusiasts.

The Ulisse Project

Sponsored by uBroker, Reset, and Pelissier as main sponsors, alongside Acid Rain, South Face Paradise, and Outbe, the project promises an exceptional adventure that encompasses not only the navigation of the 173 km of the Vjosa River but also a downstream crossing of the Vjosa estuary to some Greek islands, retracing the exploits of adventurers of yore. Using a raft built entirely from recycled materials, the team is committed to exploring this pristine environment, venturing into the meanders of the river and along its estuary towards the surrounding Greek islands. During this epic journey, they will join citizen science initiatives along the way, contributing to scientific research and the conservation of the river ecosystem, as well as the exploration of these pristine and history-rich lands. Carlo and Gabriele collaborated to create a raft entirely constructed using reclaimed materials. Through ingenuity and dedication, they transformed beer barrels and other recycled materials into a structure distinguished by its environmental sustainability. Carlo’s craftsmanship was crucial to the success of this project, with his welding and assembly skills shaping a sturdy and functional raft. Mel, with his expertise in design and concept, led the creative process, ensuring that the raft not only met functional requirements but also embodied a tangible expression of sustainability. This raft symbolizes a commitment to a more sustainable world. The use of reclaimed materials not only reduces environmental impact but also testifies to the possibility of creating innovative solutions from existing resources. Together, Carlo and Gabriele have demonstrated that ambitious projects can be realized with a keen eye on environmental stewardship, thus paving the way for a journey that not only explores the pristine waters of the river but also promotes positive change towards more sustainable practices.

The Role of South Face Paradise

South Face Paradise, led by its founders Simone and Luca, not only coordinates the project and logistical aspects but also actively engages in the descent of the Vjosa River and provides safety support along the entire route. In collaboration with the company Outbe, South Face Paradise will be responsible for scientific analysis along the course of the river, contributing to the collection of fundamental data for scientific research and the conservation of the river ecosystem. Numerous different samplings will be conducted during the adventure, including the use of the MeteoTracker sensor for meteorological monitoring, the FreshWater Watch protocol designed by Earthwatch EU for the health status of the river ecosystem, water quality analysis sampling, and the use of EnvLogger sensors to quantify water temperature along the entire river. This synergy between South Face Paradise and OutBe on behalf of the scientific community promises to provide a solid foundation for competent authorities to better understand the river ecosystem and contribute to its long-term protection.

The project is not limited to a sports adventure, but extends to a challenging environmental awareness campaign. The Vjosa River is at the center of an international fight for its protection, known as “Save the Blue Heart of Europe.” Thanks to the joint efforts of environmentalists and support from important brands and institutions, the eponymous national park was established in 2023, the first wild river park in Europe.

The Ulisse Project Documentary


The expedition aims to do more than just document the experience; it intends to produce a documentary that tells the story and struggle behind the Vjosa River. It will be a narrative that captures the testimonies and symbolic places of the battle to preserve this unique and wonderful river.

Simone, spokesperson for South Face Paradise, stated: “We believe that by joining forces, we can create a significant impact while cultivating mutually beneficial relationships. We are excited to involve partners who share our values of sustainability and environmental protection.”

The Exploration of the Vjosa River promises to be an epic adventure, combining sports, nature, and a commitment to environmental conservation. It represents a tangible example of how it is possible to transform a passion for adventure into concrete actions to protect our planet.