Fly & Drive – Villages of Pelion
Pelion is full of pretty villages and beautiful scenery. You can admire this course all from your residence, but it is also possible to make a car tour of these places. Therefore, we have an interesting route made up by Pelion for you. We reserve double rooms with shower and toilet for you based on bed and breakfast in hotels and in the so-called Archontika. The first and last night at Volos. Basically you will stay afterwards at Makrinitsa, Tsagarada and Vizitsa. However, the route is dependent on the availability, in view of this Archontika have only a few rooms and the choice is limited.
Fly & Drive – Northern Greece
Day 1 Arrival at Volos
Day 2 Volos — Larissa — Vergina/Thessaloniki — Naoussa
After the city Larissa you will come soon in the famous Tempe valley. The river that flows here between the peaks of the Ossa (2000 m) and Olympus (2917 m) has over the centuries carved a deep gorge over seven kilometers long. When you drive further to the North, you see the higher peaks of the Olympos Mountains. Here the Greek gods would have their home base. At Dion at the foot of Olympus, Alexander the Great would have consulted the gods before he began his conquest to Persia. At the exit to the town Veria you may consider to visit the excavations of Vergína. Vergína was the capital of Macedonia before the famous Princes Philip and his son Alexander the Great in the 4th century BC. held sway over here. Even when later Macedonian rulers ruled from Pella, they were always buried in Vergína. The Oracle of Delphi had in fact stated that the Macedonian Empire would fall apart as soon as this was not longer happening. This was exactly what happened. Thessaloniki city owes his name to Thessalonike, a sister of Alexander the Great. Near Pella there is a city excavated at the time of Alexander the Great and his son, in the 4th century BC., Acted as capital.
Overnight at Naoussa.
Day 3 Naoussa — Edessa — Florina — Prespa lakes — Kastoria
Today you will not need to drive longer than 100 kilometers. If you want to visit all the natural beauty and interesting things, then you will have to drive a few kilometers more. Please don’t miss the many different and beautiful lakes in this region. The exciting road between Florina and Kastoria runs along the Prespa Lakes on the border between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Albania. Incidentally, is only the smallest of the Prespa Lakes entirely in Greece. Along the way, you can already see the lakes from a height. Its environment is by the Greek government declared as a National Park. Here are some animals which are likely to be rare in Europe. In this park there are several hiking trails. When you arrive in Kastoria, you will have a magnificent view over the lake with the same name.
Your night is at Kastoria.
Day 4 Kastoria — National Park Vikos-Aoos — Zagoria-area — Ano Pedina
Today you leave the Greek province of Macedonia and arrive in the province of Epirus. Today you don’t go beyond the small village of Ano Pedina. During the ride there is a lot to see, which include the Vikos Gorge. Near the town of Konitsa is the National Park Vikos-Aoos. Between the mountains are hidden villages which have common characteristics in terms of housing construction. They are built of a kind of gray slate that is found here in the mountains. This mountain villages called together the Zagoria villages. Zagoria means ‘behind the mountains’. They would have been founded in ancient times. Anyway, the inhabitants had their own culture. You will see also the remarkable arch bridges over gorges, ravines and rivers.
Overnight at Ano Pedina.
Day 5 Ano Pedina — Ioannina — Oracle of Dodoni — Metsovo
In the center of Ioannina, capital of Epirus, is the city castle. This has become notorious as the cruel Ali Pasha lived here about 200 years ago. A few kilometers outside the town are the remains of the Oracle of Dodoni. It is not as famous as the oracle of Delphi, but much older. There was an oak tree which was said that Zeus spoke through the rustling of oak leaves. Only the priests and priestesses could understand him. If you do not arrive too late in Metsovo, a walk through the village and its surroundings is a must. The village has its own style, the result of the prosperity which it enjoyed in earlier times.
Overnight in Metsovo.
Day 6 Metsovo — Meteora-monasteries — Trikala — Pertouli
The shortest route is via Metsovo to Pertouli Tríkala. But there will be a wonderful respite. You will pass by the area of Meteora. If you haven’t seen what the nature curious game played here, you will be amazed.
In the course of time, weather and wind washed away tens of meters soft rocks, only the hard rocks have been stayed really close to Kalambáka. Relatively narrow rock pillars of sixty meters and higher keep standing, as lonely pillars in an empty land.
Long ago, at the top of the highest of those giant pillars, monks built monasteries.
Unbelievable how they have managed it. Nowadays they have carved steps in those rocks, but at the time of construction of these monasteries, the monks have all the material on hands and knees scrambling to drag upwards. Then you drive through the Plain of Thessaly to Trikala, a provincial town, where according to tradition the god of surgery, Asklepios was born. South of Trikala is Pili. There you can find the remains of the ancient fortress Gomphoi, destroyed in 48 BC.
Through Pili and the picturesque mountain village of Elati is a way to Pertouli, followed by the beautiful mountain roads of Pindos mountain you can explore the surroundings. Asklèpios would have gathered here the common medicinal herbs.
This time you will stay in Pertouli.
Day 7 Pertouli — Plastiras-lakes — Trikala — Larissa — Volos
You’ll leave the impressive Pindos Mountains again via Trikala. It is also a consideration to have first a visit at one of the hidden beauties of Greece. The Plastiras lake region has a unique beauty. The lake has an area of four square kilometers and is sixty meters deep. Archaeological excavations in this Lake District, the old Nevropoli, testify that this area was the bridge between Thessaly and Epirus.
The excavations proved that the time must have been an economically prosperous area. There are also many monasteries in this area. Best known is Porta Panagia, built in 1283. The adjacent bridge, Porta, dating back to 1514. Larissa is after Trikala the next major town on the road to Volos, the capital of Thessaly.
Overnight at Volos.
Fly & Drive – Central and southern Greece
In cooperation with Atropa Travel, we have created some nice car tours, during the tour you will get to know more about a specific area.
On arrival at the airport, you will receive the rental car and you drive one of the proposed routes. During this week you make a trip along the most beautiful places in this area. The nights are based on double rooms with shower and toilet, with breakfast included.
Day 1 Arrival at Volos
Day 2 Volos — Oracle of Delfi — Arachova — Delfi
The trip to Delfi will be long and you will not encounter many cultural attractions en route. However, the landscape during your trip will now and then get your attention.
Actually, that’s a good thing, because in our opinion you should reserve as much time as possible for Delphi. Here was indeed the famous oracle. At the site of the excavations is a museum. After the visit to Delfi you could take a trip to the mountain village of Arachova. It lies at an altitude of nearly 1,000 meters. The surroundings of Mount Parnassos is a protected area and called the National Park Parnassos.
Overnight in Delphi.
Day 3 Delfi — Patras — Gulf of Corinth — Olympia
When you drive towards Patras from Delfi, you will cross the Gulf of Corinth. Here you’ve arrived in the Peloponnese. At the village Olimbia you will find the ruins of the temple of Olympia. The name is almost identical to the name of the great mountain Olympos, which is far from here in northeastern Greece. That similarity is not accidental. This mountain was the permanent residence of the ancient Greek gods. Here in the Peloponnese, chief god Zeus came now and then to let them worship. The excavations have shown that there has been an enormous temple to Zeus. Around 1,600 years ago it would have been deliberately destroyed by the Romans who then ruled Greece. You may know that in this place 3000 years ago the first Olympic Games were held.
Overnight in Olympia.
Day 4 Olympia — Krestena — Andrinitsa — Karitena — Langadia
Today you will travel through Arcadia. This region inspired in the last century romantic writers to write sweet stories. These were the so-called pastoral novels. Imagine yourself in a fascinating journey over high mountains and through deep ravines. Because of the numerous lively rivers and streams here and the large plants and trees wealth, it is a friendly area. You drive through Krestena on a narrow mountain road and so you will arrive in upland Andrinitsa. Slightly higher you will see the ruins of a temple dedicated to Asklepios, the god of healing. Who would have protected this village for the ruling plague.
In the next village, Karitena, you might recognize the ruins of the Frankish castle. These were, in fact, depicted on one of the Greek banknotes. The name refers to the Frankish armies from Western Europe who made around the year 1000 their crusades to Palestine to fight the Muslim occupiers of Jerusalem and other holy places for Christians. At the same banknote was also depicted the Greek freedom hero Theodore Kolokotronis. Which was born here in Karitena. The house where he lived around 1800 still stands next to the chapel.
Your overnight accommodation is Lagkadia.
Day 5 Langadia — Tripoli — Tolo — Epidaurus/Mycene — Nafplion
From Lagkadia you will drive through Tripoli to Tolo, a seaside resort in Nafplion. From here you can visit Epidaurus and Mycenae, both are famous about the many excavations. World-famous is the theater of Epidaurus. It was built 300 BC. and is regarded as the most perfect building ever. Although there are nearly 12,000 seats, and the furthest row is sixty meters away from the site of the actors or musicians, but each produced sound may by them, how gentle too, can be heard everywhere. Just like the magnificent temple dedicated to Zeus at Olympia, destroyed by the Romans about 400, also this wonder of architectural ingenuity has been destroyed. It has been renovated and is once again used as a theater.
Your overnight stay is in Nafplion.
Day 6 Nafplion — Corinthe Canal — Athene
From Nafplion turn heading north. In Corinth is the famous Corinth Canal. Only here the Peloponnese peninsula connected to the mainland by a just 6 kilometers narrow strip of land. In ancient times and the Middle Ages there were ships coming from the sea to the land and rolled on sleepers to the Gulf of Corinth. Ever since the days of the infamous Emperor Nero attempts were made to dig a canal through the Isthmus. Only around 1900 they succeeded, led by a French engineer. The channel is a landmark because of the huge, steep walls on either side making it seem even smaller than it already is. Larger ships increasingly choosing besides the almost four hundred kilometers long detour by sea. They are not aloud to sail on their own through the canal and there are long waiting times.
Overnight in Athens.
Day 7 Athene — Lamía — Volos
The return to Volos will take about four hours if you travel without interruption. But in Athens, do not miss a look at the Parthenon. This is the temple dedicated to the virgin goddess Athena. This goddess, like the sea god Poseidon, was born from the head of Zeus, gave her name to this city. But there is much more in this ancient metropolis. After leaving this city, the return is deployed back to Volos.
Overnight in Volos.