There are places in the world, which are hidden from the first sight, they are not on headlines and you hardly can hear from your friends about them. But after you visit Zagoria villages you will be one of those who can tell about the unspoiled beauty, the traditional villages and the stone trails and arched bridges of the area.
Join us on this weekly exploration in the Zagoria and explore on foot the secret paths of Vikos – Aoos National Park, learn more about the myths and stories of the area and observe the unique flora and fauna.
Explore on foot the unspoiled natural beauty and the traditional stone villages of the Zagori area!
- Duration: 8 days
- Level: Moderate to Challenging
- Tour Pace: Moderate
- Tour comfort: Standard
- Suitable for: All travelers
- Available: May – October
- Hike through Vikos Gorge, one of the deepest canyons in the world
- Explore traditional stone – made villages, untouched by time
- Cross historical arch stone bridges
- Hike to the mythical alpine Dragon Lake
- Observe the rich flora and fauna of Vikos – Aoos National Park
- Taste delicious local food and experience the hospitality and warmth of the local people
Day 1: Athens/Thessaloniki – Tsepelovo
Our meeting point is Athens or Thessaloniki International airport. From Thessaloniki airport, you transfer to Zagoria by car (around 3.5-4 hrs driving distance). If you start from Athens, we fly to Ioannina national airport (1hr flight) and then we transfer by car to Zagoria villages (50 min).
You are met and welcomed by our team and your group leader explains briefly the trip details. We then set off for Tsepelovo, the largest among the 47 villages in the Zagoria, where we will have dinner and overnight.
* In case you wish to fly to another Greek airport, please contact us, so we can arrange your transfer to Zagoria villages.
Day 2: Tsepelovo – Beloi – Vradeto – Tsepelovo
After a good breakfast, we start our day hiking trip from Tsepelovo upwards, towards the highest village of Zagori, called Vradeto (1450m).
From there, following a beautiful path at the edges of Vikos Gorge, we arrive to the viewpoint Beloi( 1650m), where we have the chance to take photos and have a panoramic view of the paths that we will follow the upcoming days.
We return to Vradeto village and from there we continue downhill to Kapesovo village through the famous steps of Vradeto (stone path built in the 16th century at the slopes of Vikos Gorge). Transfer back to Tsepelovo.
(Hike duration: 4 hours)
Day 3: Tsepelovo – Kipi – Koukouli – Vitsa
After breakfast, we depart from our hotel to descend towards the starting point of theVikos Gorge through the stone bridge “Paliogefyra”, dating back to 980. Our Hiking trip through a forest of beech and pine trees, we will reach the village of Kipi.
From Kipi, we walk uphill the stairs of Koukouli (stone steps like the Vradeto stairs) and we visit the center of this picturesque village.
We walk down into the Vikos gorge again, and, after crossing the “Misiou” bridge, we climb the old stairs of Vitsa to reach this beautiful traditional village, built just at the edge of the gorge.
(Hike duration: 5 hours)
Day 4: Crossing Vikos Gorge
Early in the morning we descend the old Vitsa stairs into the Vikos ravine, one of the deepest gorges in the world! This is one of the most beautiful, impressive and rewarding hiking paths in the area and it will take us about 6 hours to cross the canyon. Traversing the ravine, we can admire the rare varieties of wild birds and flowers that have found protection into it.
Early in the afternoon we arrive at Vikos village where we are picked up by mini bus and transferred to Aristi village for dinner and overnight stay.
(Hike duration: 6-7 hours)
Day 5: Arisiti – Mikro Papingo Village
In the morning, we transfer from Aristi to Vikos village.
Following the old up-hill path, we traverse the beautiful ravine with direction Papingo village. Above us the “Towers of Papingo” are rising to an inaccessible place that no one can reach.
(Hike duration: 4 hours)
Day 6: Papigo – Dragon Lake – Papigo
Our hiking trip for today is quite demanding, yet truly fulfilling!
Early in the morning, after breakfast, we start from Papigo village our ascending hiking route towards the Astraka refuge. The surrounding alpine scenery will captivate you for sure! After a short break for coffee and relaxation, we continue until the beautiful “Dragon Lake”, situated at 2100m altitude. The view of this magical landscape will definitely reward you after a long hiking day.
Return to Papingo village
(Hike duration with return: 7-8 hours).
*Depending on the weather we could overnight in the refuge and return the day after to M.Papigo
Day 7: Papingo – Ioannina
This morning we transfer to the picturesque city of Ioannina, where you have the day free to explore the city center, the castle, the museums and the island of Ali Pasa in the middle of the lake.
Secret tip: do not miss the chance to drink tsipouro and taste the delicious accompanying mezedes (tapas)!
Day 8: Departures
After breakfast, we fly to Athens or transfer by car to Thessaloniki (depending on your flight schedule).
(Article provided by TrailsBeyond regarding their hiking trips. Its an open all year event.)