BikeOdyssey 2018: 17 June - 24 June 2018

Route

53 Villages along the way

xartis nomoi

53 villages in 8 different prefectures of Greece.Quaint, mountain villages of unique natural beauty and historical significance will be among the places that the toughest  mountain bike race will cross along the mountain range of Pindos.

Some of the villages and settlements along Bike Odyssey 2018 route:

 

 Smixi - 1st Village Station 

444039 SmixiSmixi is a mountainous village in the Prefecture of Grevena and it is built at an altitude of 1,220 meters on the slopes of Smolikas and it is one of the most mountainous settlements in Greece.
Smixi was not always in its current location (38 km southwest of Grevena). The village was created by the union of settlements "Biga" and "Pinakades". When the Pinakades area was plagued by malaria, its inhabitants decided to move elsewhere to escape. The inhabitants of Biga, fearing the same, decided to follow the first but disagreeing with each other about the point of establishing the new settlement. Then the older man decided to start two young people - one from each settlement with a stone in their hands - and at the point where they would meet would make the new settlement and lay the church of Saint Nicolas. So it happened and the village was named Smixi (= mixing of the two settlements). The stones held by the two young people were incorporated into the foundations of the church of St. Nicolas, as decided. The village was built with very personal work: carriers carried stones with mules, while the immigrants in America coming from Smixi undertook the project financing. Generally speaking, there was great mutual aid and solidarity between the Smixians. Once it was considered that it was an insult to the village if a young woman was married with a man from another place. They always married each other, thus maintaining the custom of intermarriage.
Its population is 750 inhabitants. It is characteristic the fact that the population reaches 1,000 people from July 20th to late August, while in the winter there are 10-15 families in the village. This happens mainly because many of Smixians are moving breeders and the altitude of Smixi (1.250 m) is not conducive to their work. Apart from these, there are freelancers who are engaged in tourism, loggers and even a craftsmanship association that makes traditional woven fabrics.
Because of its proximity to the ski center of Vasilitsa, it has become an important winter resort in the region.

Avdella
AvdellaAvdella is classified as a rural mountain village, built at an altitude of 1300m. It is located at the western end of the prefecture of Grevena, close to the borders with the prefecture of Ioannina. It abstains from Grevena, 43 km, to the Southwest. The village is built on the eastern slopes of Northern Pindos, in a wooded area at the boundaries of the National Park of Valia Calda, and the high altitude is making it one of the most mountainous villages of Greece.
Before 1800, the village was situated in the "Fantines" region, but the residents, mostly large families of Vlach shepherds moved to the current position due to better climate. The people of Avdella actively participated in the Greek Revolution of 1821 and the Macedonian Struggle with major Macedonian Leaders Verros Zisis and Ioannis Chatzigiannis.

 

Milia
miliaMilia is one of the most beautiful villages of Epirus. Located at an altitude of 1250 meters above sea, on the mountains of Pindos. The village belongs to the prefecture of Ioannina, in particular occupies the northeastern part of the countyside, just 65 km from Ioannina.
It is one of the traditional villages of Pindos, with a permanent population of 450 inhabitants. Embraced from the mountains Livadi, Mavrovouni, Tsapouli and Antichasia. Located between Metsovo (prefecture of Ioannina), the Malakasio, Palia Koutsoufliani (Trikala) and Krania (Grevena) – in between the boundaries of Epirus, Thessaly and Western Macedonia.

 

 

 Kallirroi - 2nd Village Station 


kallirroi2Kallirroi is a mountainous village in the district of Trikala. It is built at an altitude of 1,040 meters on the slopes of southern Pindos, between the peaks Dalia (1,500 m), Krotiaia Papou (1,700 m) and Bourdeni (1,750 m), between Krania and Polythea. It is 60 km from Kalambaka and is one of the most mountainous settlements in Thessaly. Kallirroi belongs to the Aspropotamos Community.

Its about 200 residents (in the summer months) are engaged in logging (8,500 acres of fir, pine and beech forest) and livestock farming. In the winter the village deserts and the community office is transported and operates in Trikala. On the contrary, in the summer, everything comes alive with the arrival of not only the locals who return to their homes but also vacationers who are ready to enjoy the beauty of the place and the good climate, thus reaching a number of 1,000 residents. The natural environment remains virgin and this has made it possible to maintain in the forests many wild animals such as deer, wolves, foxes, hares, bears and squirrels. The river of Kallirrois poured into Aspropotamos is a natural reserve of trout.

Although the testimonies of the occasional movements of the populations during the Ottoman domination are fragmentary, we know that Vlachs from the Aspropotamos area settled in Iraklia (Tzoumagia, Serres). Perhaps such a movement was the reason for the desertion of the village before 1830, as tradition shows. It is also reported that the ethnologist Cosmas Aetolos passed and taught through the village. The two churches of the village followed the fate of the settlement. Thus, the sacred church of the Koimiseos tis Theotokou (Assumption of the Virgin), dated before 1600, was burned in 1943 by the Germans and a new one was built in its place. Only the old bell tower was preserved. On the fifteenth of August, the village celebrate a feast after the Divine Liturgy in the village square. The church of Ag. Nicholas, which is considered the oldest of the village, was demolished in 1970 and a new temple was built in its place, where part of the iconostasi (altarpiece) and portable icons saved from the old church and were placed in the new one.

 

Anilio
5.AnilioAnilio is a mountainous village of the prefecture of Ioannina. It is built at an altitude of 1,060m. on the mountain slopes of northern Pindos, opposite Metsovo and the shadow of "Fatzetos" maountain top of Pindos. Its Vlach name is "Kiare", which means a sunless place. However, the village is at a beautiful and sunny place. The view of the natural wealth, which is unique every season, and the view of the traditional, cosmopolitan and picturesque Metsovo make it unique.
For the first time, historically, we find it in 1674 in an official document of the Turkish public administration. Then the village was one of the two neighborhoods of Metsovo. Of course it is certain that Anilio existed earlier, since the presence of the Vlachs in the area was recorded historically much earlier. According to Pukeville, it was inhabited by a Vlach livestock population in the tenth century.
During the Ottoman Empire, Anilio enjoyed privileges and had relative autonomy and local government. It was liberated by the Turks on 31 October 1912 and was a separate community until 1998. Then it merged into a municipality with Metsovo.
Today Anilio is a lively village with about 1,000 inhabitants, shops, hotels and schools. Anilio is the first in producing bee hives in Greece and the first in producing barrels. There is considerable livestock farming on vast pastures and cheese, honey, nuts, tea and oregano are also produced.

Amarantos
6.AmarantosThe village Amarantos is located at an altitude of 950 meters of Pindos Mountains. A place with extreme beauty protected by the European Union as Natura 2000. The Amaranth is a mountain resort, built in firs. Far from Trikala 58 km and from Kalambaka 37 km. Located south of the municipality, between altitudes 780 - 1020m.
The name Amarantos was given in 1928 due to the flower "Amaranthos" that blooms in May and turn yellow the meadows. The old Vlach name was "Vendista".

 

 

Paleochori
7.PaleochoriPaleochori is a mountain village of Pindos at an altitude of 1,050 m. 22 km SW of Kalampaka. Surrounded by the peaks of Pindos, Kokkinovrisi (1,700 m), Gionali (1,700 m), Goura (1,900 m), Soufli (2,010 m), Trigkia (2,204 m) and 6,000 acres of virgin fir forests across the rivers Pliatsikas, Vlaha, Katonissa and Koggia.
Paleochori belongs to the municipality of Kalampaka of Regional Unity oF Trikala and the official name is "Paleochorion".

 

 

 


Aidona
8.AidonaIt is a mountainous community of Pindos, built at an altitude of 850m, 40km. of Kalampaka. A special attraction of Aidona is the centuries-old elm tree opposite the square that has been designated as the Preserved Monument of Nature.
Aidona (means female nightingale) is a face of Greek mythology transformed into a homonymous bird, the nightingale. There are two versions of the transformation of Aidona into a bird.
According to the first version, Aidona was the daughter of Pandareus and wife of Zythos with whom he acquired a son, Ιtylos. Aidona felt jealous of Niovi, who was the wife of Amphionas, brother of Zythos, and had 12 children. So he decided to kill one of Niovi's children but accidentally killed her son, Ιtylos. Zeus to soothe her pain transformed her into a nightingale.
According to the second version, Aidona was the wife of Polytechnos. Somehow he boasted that their happiness was superior to that of Zeus and Hera. Hera, in order to revenge her, ordered Eris to put the idea to Aidona to compete with Polytechnos. Aidona managed to beat the bet that they had put and asked for a new slave. Polytechnos very angry send to her her sister, Chelidona (means female swallow) who had first raped. The two sisters to revenge him murdered the son of Polytecnos and served his body as food to Polytechnso. He, learning what they had done, tried in his turn to avenge them. However, Pandareus' guards prevented Polytechnos, salved him with honey and left him to the insects. However, Aidona finally felt sorry for him and tried to save him. This angered her father. Zeus transformed everyone into birds. Aidona into nightingale, Chelidona into swallow, Polytechnos into pelican and Pandareus into sea eagle.

Chrysomilia
9.ChrysomiliaMountain village of the prefecture of Trikala at an altitude of 910m. It is 39km from Kalampaka and 47km from Trikala. The name Chrysomilia is relatively recent. The old name of the village was Pano Perliago until 1928. It was given by the Turks and meant Pano Panagia (means Upper Virgin Mary). A forest of firs, chestnuts and cedars spreads over the settlement.
In 1943 the village was burned by the Germans, but until today there are several old stone houses and churches such as Aghia Paraskevi. There is also a folklor museum in the village. Characteristic of the village are the many chapels located in and around the village.

 


Pertouli
10.PertouliAt an altitude of 1090 meters on the slopes of Koziakas and 54 km from Trikala, a mountainous paradise surrounded by mountains, dense forests, green meadows and running waters awaits you to conquer. Built amphitheatrically, Pertouli was in the past a gathering place for the local breeders. Today, that which makes the village stand out and is one of the most popular mountain resorts in Greece, is its picturesque stone houses with its red or stone roofs, the ski center and the beautiful fir forest.
Approximately 5 km before Pertouli, the fir forest begins to recede and shrubs and grass appear in its place. There are the Livadia Pertouliou (means the meadows of Pertouli), with the low hydrophilic plants and the Pertouliotikos River (or Xeria River) that creates during its flow meanders, the "klouria" as the locals call it is and hosts riverfishes and frogs. You will encounter galloping horses, free cows, streams and small ponds, while roe deers and deers pass by your side while you are having a picnic in the recreation areas. At the same location is located the ski resort.

Vlacha
11.VlachaAfter Elati and before the Pertouli Ski Center, we find our left a detour that leading to the small picturesque village of Vlacha. Vlacha has an altitude of 1116 meters above sea level and belongs to the Municipality of Pyli.

 

 

 

 

Petrochori
12.Petrochori32 km from Trikala, at an altitude of 650 m, between the fir forests of Bouziara and Balaros and below the peaks of Psilos (1,500 m) and Prophet Elias (1,010 m) we meet Petrochori (or Vitsena) , a small community of farmers and breeders (350 people in the winter and 480 in the summer).
From the forest of Balaros, from where the Plastira Lake and Trikala are visible, are flowing the waters of the spring and the torrent of the same name and of the waterfall Klyronomia or else Puria. Near the village flows the tributary of the Portaikos River, Petrochoritis, and there are the sources of Platanaki and Moutsiaropoula.
In the village there are the professions of carrier and woodcarver. There are still opperative the distilleries and the mill "of Vlasiotis" and the old stone house Hani - Bekou is preserved.
At a distance of half an hour from the village there are the ruins of an ancient fortification consisting of two parts, the Upper and the Lower Castle, which communicate with each other with an underground tunnel.

Aghios Ioannis
It is a settlement of the Ropoto village.

Loggies
It is a settlement of the Ropoto village.


 Pyli - 3rd Village Station 

15.PyliPyli of Trikala is located in a beautiful natural landscape dominated by imposing mountains and the Portaikos River. It is close tothe capital of the Prefecture of Trikala, and specifically 18 kilometers from Trikala. The name of the town Pyli is due to its geographic location. It is located just before the passage between the two mountains of Koziakas and Itamos and it is essentially the entrance from the lowland and rural areas of the Prefecture of Trikala to the mountainous and southern areas of Pindos.
It is located on the road of Trikala-Arta and is a favorite stop for the travellers before reaching the popular winter destinations of Elati, Pertouli and the ski center that is there. At Pyli of about 2,500 residents there are several attractions worth seeing. The first is the famous arched stone bridge overlooking the Portaikos River. It is located about one and a half kilometers outside Pyli and is perfectly harmonized with the wild natural landscape for about 500 years after it was built in 1514 by Saint Bessarion. It is a construction achievement of the time, as long as you think that it is 67 meters long. If you cross over the bridge to the other shore of the river and walk in the direction of Portaikos for about 1 kilometer, you will find the most important Byzantine and religious monument of the area. The Byzantine church of Porta Panagia. The church of Porta Panagia or else the "Panagia ton Megalon Pylon" (means the Virgin Mary of Great Gates)is located opposite the town of Pyli, in the settlement Porta, which was also the birthplace of Saint Bessarion. It was built in 1283 by the sebastokrator John Angelos Komninos Doukas the First and although he has suffered several great damages since then it has retained several elements such as the relatively recent 18th-century frescoes and the original flooring. The uniqueness of the temple, beyond its important historical and religious significance for the wider region of Trikala, is located in two mosaics on the main gate of the sanctuary. These are the full-length icons of the Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ, placed opposite from that would be according to Christian Christian Orthodox tradition, with Jesus Christ on the left and the Virgin Mary on the right.

Aghios Dimitrios
It is a village next to settlement Loggies of Ropoto.

Vatsοunia
17.VatsouniaA semi-mountainous settlement of the Prefecture of Karditsa, 10km from Mouzaki, Vatsounia is sparsely populated among chestnut, fir and oak forests.
The foundation of the village is lost in the depths of the ages. In the location "Palioklisi", very close to the settlement, the kingdom of the ancient Selli (an ancient Greek race of Epirus) is placed. In the later years, according to testimonies, around the year 1800 many battles took place in the area. At the end of the last century, the population of the settlement was significantly strengthened.
A special monument of the area is the church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. Its foundation at spot "Panagia" is placed in the 16th century and its interior is full of frescoes. Equally remarkable is the church of Saint Nicolas, a basilica with pillars, which it is located in the center of the settlement and built in 1900. Finally, within the village there are three ruined watermills that refer to earlier times.
The basic income of the residents is ensured by agriculture and livestock farming. The village has excellent drinking water which, according to chemical analyzes of the General Chemistry of the State, is one of the best in Greece.
The Pamisos River, which passes through the village center and flows into Pinios River, cools the village. The vegetation on the shores of the river is rich and the avifauna is of particular interest. In the area of ​​Vatsounia there are three springs, the Sklythra spring, which is easily accessible and the Sami and Goura springs which are difficult to reach. There is also a 7,000-acre forest with oaks, firs and chestnuts where one can do hiking through scenic paths.
Finally, it is worth mentioning that the Municipality of Vatsounia, together with many residents, founded the Community Laic Base Bussiness, Hydroelectric SA. , for the exploitation of the waters of the area and the production of 600kw electricity.

Spathes
Settlement of Drakotripa village. The area is well known for the construction of swords and for that reason it is called "Spathes" (means big swords).

Keramario
19.KeramarioPlace near the village of Drakotrypa where there is "Keramario", which is a traditional guesthouse and a tavern, and from there it has taken its name the wider area too.

 

 

 

 

Drakotrypa
20.DrakotrypaDrakotrypa is a village in the Municipality of Mouzaki of Karditsa. It is located at an altitude of 650 meters, almost at the foot of two mountains - Tybano and Karavoula - and is surrounded by fir forest. Because most of the forest is virgin, many species of fauna have been found in it, and some of them are extremely rare. Inside the forest, wild boars, roe deers and foxes have made their appearance.
This village is lost in green and abundant waters. There are also springs with medicinal waters as well as the dragon cave, from which has taken and the village its name. According to tradition, a dragon was living there.
Drakotrypa, known for many centuries under the name Sklatena, was the headquarters of the craft industry for making swords during the Ottoman domination. A settlement is still named Spathes (means big swords) today. The current inhabitants of Drakotrypa come from a very large percentage of the area of ​​the Mastrochoria (means villages of craftmen) of Konitsa. They were craftsmen of stone and they used a special language, called mastorika or otherwise koudaritika, to get in touch when they were working.
In the area there is a very important monument of Agrafa, the monastery of Aghia Triada, built in 1743. During the Ottoman domination, great Greeks such as George Karaiskakis and Saint Cosmas Etolos passed through it. The village, in the past, has undergone many sedimentations whose traces are still visible today. According to the tradition, these sedimentations are due to the curse of Agios Kosmas Etolos, because the residents and monks of the monastery of Aghia Triada, during his visit to the village, have been inhospitable to him.
There is an under contruction library in the village and a museum with exhibits of the 18th and 19th century. Finally, it is worth mentioning that Drakotrypa is the birthplace of four champions: Dimosthenis Tampakos, Olympic champion in the rings, Evi Tampaki, world champion in rhythmic gymnastics, Christina Tampaki, Greek champion at 100 meters with obstacles and Athena Papasotiriou, Greek champion at the heptathon.

Platania
21.PlataniaSettlement of Oxya village at Karditsa with an altitude of 979 meters from the sea surface.

 

 

 

 

 

Paleochori
22.PalaiochoriPaleochori belongs to the Municipality of Argithea and is a central settlement. It is structured by flats on a smooth green slope and it is at an altitude of 950m.
Its inhabitants amount to 33, are mainly of local origin and are engaged in livestock and beekeeping. The most important monument of the settlement is the stone post-Byzantine church of Saint George (17th century), in the courtyard of which locals and visitors meet every year on the last Sunday of July.

 

 

 

Fylakti
23.FylaktiFylakti is a mountainous village of the Prefecture of Karditsa, built at an altitude of 1000 meters on the slopes of Agrafa, very close to Plastiras Lake , with 278 inhabitants. It is one of the most mountainous settlements of Thessaly. The history of the village dates back to Byzantine times. Previously he was in the position "Aghioi Apostoli "and was called the Megali Pouliana. However, due to illness, the inhabitants moved to the present location where the monasteries of Aghia Triada and Saint George. They named the village of Sermenikon because of the disease (from the greek word sirmi which means contagion-epidemic) and after 1928 it got its present name Fylakti (from the greek word fylasso which means protect), because the village was now protected from the disease.
Impressive is the fir forest of 8,000 hectares opposite the village. The flora consists of firs, oaks, chestnut trees and cedar trees, while hares, wild boars, roe deers and partridges live there. From the surrounding peaks - Voutsikaki 2154m, Petralona 1150m, Tsoukarela 1600m, Kafky 1800m. - the view to the Thessalian plain and Epirus is unique. From the mountain Voutsikaki, the river Megdovas flows and pours into Plastira Lake.
In the area of Templa south of the village and behind the ski center, there is the cave of Kaimakia. Within the village, we find many singletracks and paths ideal for hiking that take us to places like Kassandra Fountain, Limpo and Ai-Giannis. From the village there are two narrow streets leading to the chapel of Prophet Elias. In Fylaki we also find many stone-built faucets and in the forest we find the Ennia Nera Fountain. The ornament of the village is the monastery of Aghia Triada of the 17th century, with the preserved three-aisled temple with a narthex and an outside arcade, with its wood-carved temple of 1852 and remarkable frescoes.
The inhabitants' occupations are agriculture and livestock farming. There is also a fish farm with trout and salmon in the village.

Pezoula
24.PezoulaPezoula is a picturesque community located southwest of Karditsa and is 33 km away. The route from the city to Pezοula is wonderful as it passes through the lush nature. Chestnut, fir and oak trees alternate and create landscapes of unique aesthetics. It is built at 900 m altitude, in the green.
The population of the village amounts to 150 people, while in the summer months it reaches around 1,500 people. They earn their income from agriculture (corn, potatoes, beans, walnuts, apples) and livestock (sheep and goats, cattle).
The first written mention of the village is in the late 16th century. Aghios Serafim, whose head is kept in the Korona Monastery, came from here. Close to the shores of the Megas River there is a picturesque watermill. The stone fountain of Aghia Paraskevi is kept in good condition, the Karagiannis fountain is located almost at the edge of the village and the Alexandris fountain is in the settlement of Neraida.
Interesting for the visitor is the three-niches covered with arches temple of Aghios Panteleimonas to the village (in Kalyvia), in a glade of dense forest with a beautiful view of the lake (previously in this place in the 16th century there was a monastery), renovated in the 18th century.
From the top of Karamanolis at an altitude of about 1,500 m, the view towards Plastiras Lake is magnificent. Another point with a special view is the "Monacho Klari" above the settlement of Neraida. There are about 3,000 acres of forest area in the village with firs, chestnuts and oaks. Dirt road leads to the Ski Center and the Mountaineering Shelter. The cave "Drakotrypa", approximately 1 km to the top of Karamanolis, lies to the west of the village.
Beach of Pezoula is located in spot Kalyvia. In its tranquil and enchanting atmosphere you can fish, swim in the clear waters of the lake, enjoy canoeing, or take a break with sports.

Νeraida (Karditsa)
25.NeraidaAt the southern ridge of Pindos and at the center of the mountainous and inaccessible Agrafa, rising in the covered by firs slopes of Maritsa at an altitude of 800-960 meters, is built the village of Neraida or Spinassa, as it was previously called.
The etymological origin of the name Spinassa is not verified, but different versions have been formulated from time to time such as:
a) The name of the village of Spinassa comes from the ancient "spinos"(finch) + "anassa" (queen of the finches), which declares the abundance of finch birds.
b) The name derives from the ancient (Homeric) verb "spin" + "asa", which means "turn I have", i.e. hidden place, hidden after turning.
c) The name derives from the Vlach words "Spin" + "oasa" which means a place with thorns.
In 1928, like many other villages, it changed its name and from Spinassa it was renamed Neraida (which means fairy in Greek) because of the many springs, with waters, which exist in the village but also its beauty.
In this area inhabited people from ancient times, before Christ (BC), and an irrefutable testimony of this are the old buildings that are preserved, the castles, the ancient tombs found and the names of the landscapes (Polyniko or Polykino, Ellinika , Pelasgian castle of Kyphos, Tsioumas castle, ruins of Kyphos villages, Bessia, Rogata, etc.).
The wider area in ancient times was called Dolopia (from the Dolopes ancient Greek race) and included the area from the roots of the plain to Velouchi and from Neuropolis to Xeniada. At the center of this area is also the village Neraida.


 Kalyvia Pezoulas - 4th Village Station 

 

kalybia pezulas 2Kalyvia is the settlement of the Local Community of Pezoulas of the Municipality of Plastira Lake in the Prefecture of Karditsa, as it was established according to the Kallikratis Program. From 1999 to 2010, according to the Kapodistrias Plan, they belonged administratively to the Board of Directors Pezoulas of the Municipality of Nevropoli Agrafa. It is a growing settlement with many country houses. It is located at a distance of 42 kilometers southwest of Karditsa and its population is 223 residents according to the 2011 census. Prior to the creation of the lake, the residents of the settlement worked in the fields of Nevropolis and kept their cabins here; from their existence the location take this name. In recent years, with the development of tourism in the area of Lake Plastira, the settlement is growing. The residents of the village are mainly engaged in agriculture and livestock farming. References to the village we have at the end of the 16th century. Sights of the area are the church of Agios Panteleimonas, the watermill, the stone fountains of Karagiannis and Agia Paraskevi.

From Kalyvia Pezoulas you can climb to the settlement of Pezoulas and also to the beautiful Fylakti. In the first kilometers you will see at your right a very picturesque large hut that is the offices of the environmental organization "Vatraxos Vratsos" (boiled frog). Man and climate change can be described by a frog that puts it in a pot of water that sits down indifferent until the water boils.

 

Neochori

26.ΝeochoriNeochori is a large settlement of the prefecture of Karditsa. It is the largest of the villages of the Municipality of Plastiras Lake and really "hangs" over the lake. It is approximately 40 km from Karditsa.
Until around the 14th century, the village was named "Paliohori" (means old village in Greek) and, according to testimonies and ruins found, it was located in the settlement "Belagia" located between Pezoula and Neochori. Due to the plague that struck the area, the inhabitants were forced to move southeast to the area where the village is still located and since then it is known as "Neochori" (means new village in Greek).
With the Treaty of Tamassi in 1525, Neochori was appointed base of the council of the Autonomous Community of Agrafa and in 1526 it is seen as the main village of the region. In addition, there was the headquarters of the diocese of Fanari and Neochori, which flourished from the 14th century until the Revolution of 1821. During the Ottoman domination the area was used as a den of Greek rebels and irregular soldiers. Also during the Second World War, the Allied Mission Association transferred its headquarters there after the destruction of the village Neraida.
Previously, the economy of the area was rural and connected to the Nevropolis Plateau. After the creation of Plastiras Lake at the site of the plateau in 1959, the region's economy suffered a blow. With the tourist development that began in the area since the 1980's, the settlement recovered thanks to tourism. Today it has numerous accommodation and tourist businesses, but still retains its traditional character.
It is worth visiting the Botanical Garden that hosts the plants of the region's ecosystem while you can indulge in a variety of outdoor activities on the lake and in the area around it. Water sports, fishing, mountain biking, horseback riding, hiking, mountaineering, paragliding, archery are some of the sporting activities you can practice, and through them relax by coming in direct contact with nature.

Belokomitis
27.MpelokomitisOn a beautiful slope of Agrafa, a stone's throw from Plastiras Lake, the village of Belokomitis appears to be perched. There are many versions of the origin of the name "Belokomitis". According to a local tradition it is a complex word and comes from Beloko (means shiny place) and myti (means nose). It is a small and beautiful village amphitheatrically concentrated on an area of ​​thirty acres. It has small, densely built houses with beautiful courtyards, while narrow alleys link the houses to each other. In the village you can find old stone houses and wood-carved balconies and doors, examples of the region's architecture.
The village is 42 km away from Karditsa and is at an altitude of 920m. Close to the village is the monastery of Panagia Pelekiti, built in the rock, from which there is a view of the whole area. Other attractions are the "Cave of Gakis" and the areas of Karvassara and Vraggiana, where there are beech, fir and chestnut forests. Opposite the village, in the "Vlachika Konakia" area, there is a vertex where at dusk can be seen a woman's face, chest, pudenda and knee , so the top has been called "Orea Kimomeni" (means Sleeping Beauty) or "Kimomeni ton Agrafon" (means Sleeping Lady of Agrafa).

Anthiro
28.AnthiroAnthiro is the seat of the Municipality of Argithea, built at 900 m. It is 75 km away from Karditsa and 50 km from Mouzaki.
The population of Anthiro consists of 350 people in the winter and about 1,500 people in the summer. The permanent residents of the village draw their income from agricultural work, livestock, beekeeping, wood processing, others are builders and some retirees, and some keep seasonal shops.
During the Ottoman domination there was a large, prosperous village in the same location, as evidenced by the ruins of the houses found at the beginning of the century (the fountain in the center of the village, the two ruined churches and the Monastery of Katousi). The oldest houses of the village, two-story stone buldings built around 1910, of which three are preserved, were built by Epirus masons.
As far as concern the place's name Boukovitsa, it is of Slavic origin. We can make it from the word boukovo, which means beech, and the suffix -itsa. It is therefore a settlement of the late Byzantine era.
In the village there is a museum with ecclesiastical heirlooms. Near the village there are the monasteries of the "Kimiseos tis Theotokou" (Assumption of the Virgin Mary) and the "Genniseos tis Theotokou" (Birth of the Virgin Mary) or else Monastery of Katousi), the bridge of Korakas, a stone-built bridge of the 14th century and two caves, of Kleftovrissi and Stavros. Points of great views are the mountain tops, Tsiouka and Pigadi.
Also, around the village there are rich forests with beeches and fir trees. Specifically the forest "Karakitsiou", with rich flora and fauna. The forest "Katsanos", the forest "Kalatori". There are also forests "Vlacha", "Kleftovrissi", "Drampala" and "Paparouna-Kanalia". Many are the sources of running water. Katousiotis or Anthiriotis River, with many river fishes and rich birdlife, stems from the location of Kranies of Metamorfosi settlement. On its way there are watermills.

Aghia Agathi
Aghia Agathi is a settlement of the Local Community of Karoplessi, in the southern part of the Prefecture of Karditsa, in a mountainous region of the Agrafa of Thessalia, between the peaks of Flytzani and Pyrgouli, on the Megdova River that descends to the south, after Artificial Lake of Tavropos and at its junction with the Sakiotis stream. It is built at an altitude of 680 and it is 55 km away from Karditsa. The old watermill is concidered as an attraction, which is located in the west of the settlement.

Karoplessi
30.KaroplessiKaroplessi (altit. 910m) is 39 km away from Karditsa. It is a local community of Municipality of Itamos . Karoplessi is located 2 km from the Forest Village Driades. It was the old seat of the Municipality of Dolopes and its history goes back to Byzantium. The visitor in the area of ​​Karoplessi will admire the gorges and the huge ecological park in the junction of Megdovas River with the Aspros River, the idyllic location with the ancient plane trees and the watermills in Aghia Agathi, as well as the Municipal Art Gallery housed in the preserved building of the Primary School.
The Primary School of Karoplessi is located near the main square of the village and is of the one-class type, the first organized project for the erection of school buildings in Greece. In 1996, it was designated as a historic listed monument because it is a remarkable and representative example of school architecture, as it was shaped in Greece from the end of the 19th century until the beginning of the 20th century.

Neraida (Evritania)
31.Neraida EvritaniasNeraida (means fairy in Greek) is a settlement of Evritania located northeast of the village of Agrafa, built at an altitude of 1,340 meters. Until 1955 it was called Niala.
The settlement is located to the west of the neck of Niala Mountain, where it is unfolted one of the greatest tragedies of the Greek Civil War, which has been recorded as a tragedy of Niala. This was the death of dozens of soldiers in the Democratic Army (the Greek Democratic Army was an army adjoining the Communist Party of Greece) and the civilians accompanying them during the operation to cross the neck of Niala in order to avoid being trapped by the forces of the government's army. The reason was the adverse weather conditions that occurred in the region where very low temperatures prevailed and a fierce snowstorm was under way. In the same operation, there was also an incident of reconciliation between the soldiers of the opposing sides, who shared the same tents for one night to protect themselves from the snowstorm.


Klistos or Klitsos
32.KlistosKlistos is found in N.W of Fourna at an altitude of 780 m. At first it was called Klitsos ( the locals insist on calling it with this name ) and was later renamed to Klistos and its seat was moved in 1951 from Koritsa to Mesochori. The name of the village, as it appears from the patriarchal documents that were preserved and kept in the church of Saint Nicolas of Koritsa, is old since 1784. Today, there is the view that the name Klistos originated from the fact that the place is closed from everywhere, from mountains, and with a letter rearrangement reached the name it has today. According to one version of the meaning of the name of Klitsos village, it is as follows: Three Cretan brothers named Klitsakis came to Valtos. From there they ascended to Agrafa and arrived at Karpenissi. Kostas Klitsakis settled there permanently. George went to Mavrilo and worked in the gunpouder mills. The third, his name is unknown, was tall and very slim and they called him Xeras and Klitsso. He finally settled somewhere in the area, where is today the Klitsos village, and the village got his name from him. Klitsos consists of three districts: Platanos, Mesochori and Koritsa, the most populous district. Here was a long before 1637, the famous monastery of "Koritsa", where the bones of Evangelist Loukas are preserved and in its place today there is the parish church of Saint Nicolas. Klitsos is the homeland of the new martyr of Saint Kyprianos, who martyred in the city on July 5, 1679. Near is the top "Voulgara", where in 996 A.D. a great battle took place between the Byzantines and the Bulgarians, which led to the complete extermination of the foreigners. Nearby, there is also the "tou Liazbei to mnima", where the great hero from Roumeli Katsantonis crushed the forces of a Turk named Eliazbeis.

Mesochori
33.MesochoriThe headquarters of the Municipal District of Klitsos, for practical reasons, since it is geographically the most central of the other settlements, hence his name, Mesochori (means in Greek the cental part of the village). Mesochori, with its great square, houses the imposing church of the Taxiarches, the school and the bust of the General Charalambos Katsimitros 1886-1962, whose name was written in the pantheon of the heroes of Greek modern history. Mesochori, with the old buildings of another era, with enough of them to be restored, jeweleries of the region, it travels you back many years.

 

 


Vracha
34.VrachaVracha is a small beautiful village of Evritania that we meet in the last years of the Byzantine Empire. It is located at the southern edge of Pindos and is built amphitheatrically at an altitude of 880m. The name of Vracha is due to the majestic and tremendous Tsioukas rock opposite the village.
At the end of the 17th century, Vracha suffered great destruction from burning and epidemics. After years it was built again. During the Revolution of 1821 the village was completely destroyed by fire. Only the Monastery, the Metamorphosis of the Savior, the Turks did not burn. It is an old monastery located in the wild Evritanic nature, surrounded by fountains, oaks and chestnuts of hundreds of years. Impressive is the small catholic with the gold-plated temple and the rare frescoes. At this monastery during the Greek Revolution, rebellious Greeks resorted. The revolutionary Katsantonis used the monastery several times as a revolutionary anthem. After the release, the village was rebuilt once more.
In Vracha there is a very old square, the Chorostation, in the center of the large Mahala (means neighborhood), next to the fountain with the historical plane tree of 350-400 years old. There is also built the elementary school of the village.
In the village there are more than 20 springs and fountains from which the village supplies water, but also an aqueduct.

Chohlia
35.ChohliaBuilt on 930m altitude. Probably the location of Ancient Oihalia, the ancient capital of Evritania. Here lies an ancient settlement where a large quantity of ancient artifacts, graves and grave goods was found as along with a statuette of the god Dionysus, who represents the god of joy crowned with ivy.

 

 

 

 

Aghios Charalampos
52.Aghios CharalamposLocated in the green, at an altitude of 900 meters and with 194 inhabitants, this small village is 31 km from Karpenissi. In the village there is a feast on February 10th, a bright exception, since almost all the other villages celebrate in the summer.

 

 

 

 

 Krikello - 5th Village Station 

36.KrikelloKrikello is a big village in the Prefecture of Evritania perched at an altitude of 1.120m, it is 30km away from Karpenissi and has about 420 inhabitants. It is situated in a privileged location among dense forests of ancient fir trees, dense fruit trees, rare aromatic plants and shady plane trees that grow alongside the rich waters of Krikellopotamos River.
On the way to Krikello is the location "Kokkalia" at 1,400m, where in 279 BC the Etolians and the Evritanes defeated the Gauls. The tradition says that from the bones of the defeated Gauls took its name that particular region (kokkalia from word kokala that means bones in Greek).
Entering the village welcomes you the sweet purl of the central spring. The village consists of stone built traditional houses with local color and the charm of the village is filled with the village square with the 6 large plane trees (one of them dates back to 1754), the cafes and the traditional taverns. The imposing cathedral of St. Nicolas dominates at the central square of Krikello. Built in 1903 by craftsmen of Epirus at the site of an older small temple. Other churches that stand out are those of St. John and Panagia Krikellliotissa (Virgin Mary of Krikello).
Below the village, there is the famous Krikellopotamos River (25 km long), which gathers its waters from Mount Kokkalia, continues its course along the eastern route, has a stop at the famous "Pantavrechi" (it is a waterfall and its name means "always rains" in Greek) and ends north at Dipotama where it meets the Karpenissiotis River.
At the location "Koufovrisi", about one and a half kilometers outside the village, we find the monument of the Resistance dedicated to the historic battle of Krikello during the German Occupation!
The existence of Krikello is probable by the Byzantine years. That is certainly from the Turkish tax records of 1454. Around 1650 Krikello was formed more organized with the union of seven older dispersed pastoral settlements (Agathi, Bolianes, Logges, Koumasia, Kithi, Korpi, Diavolitsi). The aim was the creation of a united and certainly more protected central settlement, due to the action of the bandits that ravaged the area, which was a very important passage on the way to sanjak (administrative division of the Ottoman Empire)of Nafpaktos. It is also said that the seven settlements had a circular shape of a ring type (krikela=krikos means ring in Greek) , from which, in one version, came the name of the village, although it is more likely to be the Vlach or Slavic origin "Kirkel". The "Solinaria" spring was the one that would provide the vital lifeblood for the later development of the village.
In the process, Krikello emerged as a great farm-livestocking-head village and experienced great prosperity throughout the centuries. During Ottoman rule it was the center of the whole vilayet (the first-order administrative division of the Ottoman Empire) of Karpenissi. Famous were the builders of Krikello, the tailors and the shoemakers who made tsarouhi (the traditional Greek shoe).
The contribution of the peple of Krikello to the 1821 Greek Revolution was also great, involving 74 local militants, reinforcing the military bodies of Gioladsis, Botsaris, Karaiskakis and other leaders of the Revolution.
On October 28, 1942, ELAS's (guerrilla army with three-member command) first battle was conducted by Aris Velouchiotis against the Italians at Koufovrisi. Krikello will experience a massive destruction by the German Nazis, two years later, in August 1944.

Stavli
37.StavliStavli is a mountainous village in the Prefecture of Evritania. It is built at an altitude of 1,230 meters at Mount Oxia, which is the end of Vardoussia, and is one of the most mountainous settlements in Greece.
It is located at the foot of Oxia mountain with excellent flora, rich fauna, mild morphology, crystal clear and cold water. The area is full of green fir trees, plains, willows, acacias and cedar trees. There is everywhere green. Below we find apples, cherry trees, pear trees, mulberries, cherry plum trees and walnuts. Finally, in these places we can meet squirrels, hares, foxes, jackals, wild boars and wolves, as well as many species of birds such as finches, larks and great tits.
Close to the springs of Krikellopotamos, between the villages of Krikello, Stavli and Abliani, the forest is so dense and imposing and has such a wild beauty that is awe-inspiring. Here the mountains inspire man. Pervasive is the feeling of non-submission, of freedom. Here, in 1897, in the "tambouria" position, General Siafakas built forts and placed the second line of defense against the Turks when Greece was not yet fully liberated and its borders were a bit above Lamia. Still these mountains were connected with the resistance against the Germans (41-44) and later unfortunately with the civil war. Walking here can be found remnants of the Siafaka's fortresses (Asprolithi-Stefania), signs of the civil war, and even bullet holes.
Aghios Athanasios, a small and beautiful chapel, with a magnificent view of the village from its courtyard, together with Aghia Paraskevi, are the guards of the village from its northern and eastern borders.
According to tradition and archaeological finds, it is speculated that in the area were the palaces and stables of the mythical king Evrytus (Stavli means stables in Greek), who gave his name to Evritania. Another interpretation for the name of the village comes from the tradition that there were the stables of the Queen of the Franks knights in the area.

Grammeni Oxia
38.Grammeni OxiaThe village is located in the Prefecture of Etoloakarnania in mountainous Nafpaktia and belongs to the Municipality of Apodotia. It is built on the Mount Oxia at a height of 1,200 meters overlooking the Vardoussia Mountains, at the point where three different prefectures meet: Etoloakarnania, Fthiotida and Fokida. It is in fact the last village of mountainous Nafpaktia before the passage to Fthiotida. It consists of the upper village and the lower one known as "Kalyvia".
On the mountainside at the east of the village was found a Macedonian underground tomb called by the local Chonoklissia because it gives the impression of a small temple. In the area has also been found ruins of ancient settlement and ceramic species of pelasgian influence. Among the churches of Aghios Dimitrios and Aghia Marina of Grammeni Oxia there are traces of ancient buildings.
The village's name was initially Sitista (from the Greek word "sitizo" which means feed) of the many grains it had. In 1927, however, it was named Grammeni Oxia (means Written Beech) from a beech that existed at the top of the mountain in Ripa. In the years of the Ottoman domination, the leaders of rebels, as they were passing through the winter with their soldiers, drew a sign high on the beech tree, because the snow reaches up the two meters, a sign that they had passed. At the same time, in the spring, when they came back to their position, they left the same sign now low. If they did not find the same sign in the spring , they would say with pain and grief: ah, please God helped him not to been killed by Turks. On September 23, 1828, in Ripa, the battle of Grammeni Oxia took place in which the Greek fighters defeated the Turks.
The whole place is a natural beauty monument !! Particular reference should be made to the most southern beech forest in Europe. The forest is located to the north of the village and seems to be trying to occupy the great meadow that continues to the top of the Mount Oxia, Sarantena and is the heart of Roumeli. According to the tradition, here stopped her way the beech and did not follow her cousin, the fir tree, on their journey. She stayed there and became the most dense forest, the last in southern Europe and the most beautiful.
Unique beauty has also the mountainous mass of Vardoussia. It is a landscape of alpine beauty. Vardoussia has a strong bas relief with large gorges and bare rocks, forests with firs from Kefalonia and open pastures at high altitudes. Often referred as "Mountain of the Waters" and "Greek Alps". Their highest peak is "Korakas" (2,475 m) and is located in the southern part of the mountain. At the top of the western part in spring is created a "fine rain" that is like a waterfall because the snow melts due to the negative slopes that the peaks present in some places. From this phenomenon many locals call Vardoussia as "Anemistos". The western complex is the wildest and at the same time a surprisingly beautiful landscape that is found in Vardoussia.
There are plenty of choices for walks and small excursions. You can start with a hiking from the upper village and the lower (the so-called Kalyvia). On the way you will meet the church of Aghios Ioannis while the path is offered to gather your oregano. A nice suggestion is also a walk in the fir forest that covers the village and is known as "Kefalari". Of course, do not miss a walk in the beech forest. If you like hiking in nature, start for the mountain shelter on the neck Of Gardiki-Grammeni Oxia. The shelter is large and comfortable. From there you can continue on the top of Mount Oxia, Sarantena (1,926m height). Do not miss to go down to the river Evinos. The landscape is fantastic. On the banks of the river there are firs and huge plane trees.

Artotina
39.ArtotinaBuilt for centuries in the northwestern edge of Fokida, Artotina is considered to be the bigger village of the mountainous Dorida, one of the largest and most important villages, situated between the peaks of Vardoussia at an altitude of 1.180 meters. Its name is attributed to "Nea Arta" (New Arta, Arta is a city in Epiruss) and the village is said to have been founded by persecuted people from Epirus about 1585.
Artotina is one of the two villages of Fokida that claims that is the birthplace the hero of the Revolution, Athanasios Diakos, (the other is the village that now have the same name with the hero). In the central square of the village, besides the endless view of Vardoussia, one of the reasons that Artotina is also known as "balcony of the Vardoussia", you will also have the opportunity to admire the marble bust dedicated to the great revoloution leader. In Artotina, many other rebels were born, such as the Dimos Skaltsas. On the outskirts of Artotina, there is "the fir of Skaltsodimos", "the cell of Diakos", "the cave of Giannoulas". Artotina was liberated by Kitsos Tzavelas in 1828.
The green nature with the tall firs, the cedars, the plane trees and the running waters - it is said that there are 50 springs around the village - make Artotina one of the most special mountainous villages in Greece. Its houses are traditionally built, double-floored, stone-built and with stone roofs. Just a short distance away is the historical monastery of St. John the Baptist, where Athanasios Diakos lived at his young age.
From Artotina, visitors have the opportunity to see Korakas, the highest peak of Vardoussia at 2,495 meters, and also enjoy endless walks in nature, in the fir forest bordering the village. In close distance besides the many natural beauties of Fokida, there is also Grammeni Oxia (owned by Etoloakarnania) and Evinos River, where one can reach the river by car.

 

 Athanasios Diakos - 6th Village Station 
40.Athanasios DiakosAt the foot of the imposing and snow-capped, for most of the year, the highest peak of Vardoussia, Korakas, at an altitude of 1,050 meters, lies the village of Athanasios Diakos in a dense forest of firs, plane trees, chestnuts and oak trees.
The old name of the village was Ano Mousounitsa but in 1959 it was renamed to Athanasios Diakos as it is considered the birthplace of the homonymous hero of the Greek Revolution of 1821. In the traditional paved square the first image that impresses you is the two imposing super-perennial plane trees - 300 years old or more - from which springs running crystal water. In the square also stands the imposing statue of the hero Athanasios Diakos, who was placed there by Plastiras in 1922 in honor of the 100th anniversary of the Revolution of 1821. In addition, since 2009, the Athanasios Diakos Museum operates in the village in his honor. Next to it, the church of Metamorphosis Sotiros (Transfiguration of the Savior), built in 1872 (in the wider area there are altogether 11 chapels), is crystal clear and carefully decorated with impressive stained glass, dignified and serene.
The village has about 600 stone-built houses in the upper and lower mahala (neighborhood). The permanent residents are 518 and in the summer the village is full of life by local and summer holidaymakers. In the village is organized the last weekend of July - by the Brotherhood of Athanasios Diakos - two-day events called "Diakia" in honor of the glorious child of the village.
Two-day events include lectures, mountain-running races, cycling and various cultural events in the village square, while traditionally Sunday is also featuring a local festivity. Feast is also customary to be held in the square on the 6th August day of the church of Metamorphosis Sotiros (Transfiguration of the Savior).

Mousounitsa
41.MousounitsaAt the southwest of the village Athanasios Diakos or Ano Mousounitsa is the village Mousounitsa.
Mousounitsa is built at an altitude of 900 meters on the eastern slopes of Vardoussia in a valley formed by a tributary of Mornos.
There are two versions for the name Mousounitsa: The first wants to get its name from the muse Ourania (nickname Ouranitsa, Nitsa) as the area was of Moussa (means muse) Nitsa, which with alteration was became the village of MousouNitsa. According to the second version, a master-shepherd distributed his property to his two sons, with one creating Athanasios Diakos and the other Mousounitsa.
In the center of the village is the temple of the Virgin Mary, while at the edges of Mousounitsa the visitor can see the small chapels of St. John and St. Nikolas. In summer, in the chapel of Aghia Lia, located above Mousounitsa, there is a feast with background the Mornos Lake.
At the entrance of Mousounitsa there is a folklore museum, where it was the old school of the village, while the Palaia Vrissi is ideal for rest and coffee, which in the early 60s fueled all the houses with water.

Koniakos
42.KoniakosFrom 1836 it belonged to the Municipality of Egitiou and in 1912 it was recognized as a Community. A large area and with large population the old village was totally destroyed during the period 1650-1750 AD, so the area was given as a Chiflik (Turkish term for a system of land management in the Ottoman Empire) to Aga Alif (Turk dignitary).
The name Koniakos originated from the "konaki" of the Greek representative of the Turks, who was called Koniakos. In the Serbian dictionary, the Slavic word Konak means lodge, tower, palace, inn.
Konakos nestles on the eastern slopes of Vardoussia, in the green. Opposite are Lefkaditi, Sykia and the imposing and prominent Giona Mountain. Below the village, dense streams with plane trees and other trees descend and poured into the neighboring Mornos River. And west on top of it are the beautiful Vardoussia, with the famous meadows of koniakos, where you can climb only from the uphill and bumpy passage "Lipes".
In the center of the village there is the impressive paved square with the big plane trees, which the center of the village's social life and the temple of St. George. Α feast takes place there on 22-23 August.
Back and north of “Pyrgakorachi” in a naturally organized position, following the riverbed of upper Mornos River, there is an ancient and medieval castle, the so-called "Castle of Koniakos" or Castle of "Gla".

Lefkaditi
53.LefkaditiLefkaditi is located in the center of the prefecture of Fokida.
The terrain of the area is essentially mountainous because it is occupied by the mountainous mass of the highest mountain of Sterea Hellas, Giona of 2512 meters and a small section of the other mountainous mass of Vardoussia. Part of the mountainous terrain is wooded with firs, cedars and kermes oaks. A large part of the rest of the area is overgrown with bushes and suitable for livestock farming for sheep and goats.
The mountainous subsoil of Giona contains enough bauxite ore and in the area it is located an active mine that mines the ore, which is converted to aluminum in the area of ​​Antikirra.
The name Lefkaditi was given by a family settled in the region during the Ottoman domination, which was originated from Lefkada, and because of this origin it was named Lefkaditi.

Kallio
43.KallioKallio hides a secret as it is the sunken village under the water. The landscape could be taken out of a horror movie scene.
The village was originally located in the area where the artificial lake that resulted from the construction of the Mornos Dam was created in 1980. For this reason the village was moved to another position above the shores of the lake while the old settlement was covered by the waters of the lake. Every time the lake falls down due to drought, a part of the village rises through the waters, like a ghost! Once the water level rises, the village is lost to the bottom.
Until 1916 Kallio was called Velouchovo, while its new name comes from the nearby ancient city of Κallipolis (means beautiful city).
The professor P. Themelis, after excavations he made with his team, discovered public buildings of the city, cemeteries, sanctuaries, the theater and the fortifications. All this, along with the remnants of the modern village, are now under water.

Pentayi
44.PentayiPentayi is a village of Dorida, built at an altitude of 937 meters in Vardoussia, in dense vegetation.
Locals refer to their village as Pentayou, not Pentayi, as it is its administrative name. There are three possible versions of how this name emerged: The first says that there was the meeting point of five streets, the second one that comes from the family with the name Kamperios, who had five sons and was one of the first families in the village and the third because it has five churches (five saints).
In Pentayi you will see many small chapels, while the main, imposing church of the village is dedicated to the Taxiarches. At the School of Free Vardoussian Speech in the center of the village there is a library of 300 titles, while there is still a primary school and a rural medical center.
During the Greek Revolution, in the area of ​​Tourkorema outside Pentayi, the Greek rebels led by Skaltsodimos defeated the army of two thousands Turks of Mustafabei, who chased them after the Messolonghi's Sortie (a mass breakout after the siege of the city).
Pentayi is the village of one of the most famous "legendary" female figures that have been included in the popular tradition, Maria Pentagiotissa, who did not hesitate to defy the perceptions that prevailed in her time and engage in sexual relations with many, according to legend, lovers . This woman and her accomplishments at the time of Othonas King, angered the local society that did not stand in her beauty, but now she is considered the most famous representative of Pentayi not only in history, but also in art.

 

Ano Chora - 7th Village Station

ano xoraAno Chora is a mountainous village of Prefecture of Etoloakarnania at the area of Mountainous ​​Nafpaktia. It is built at an altitude of 1,060 meters on the western edges of Vardousia on the slopes of the hill called Kerasovouni, and is one of the most mountainous villages of Aitoloakarnania. It is approximately 52 km from Nafpaktos, which is the nearest big city. Located in the middle of an amazing forest of fir and chestnut trees that penetrate to the village. It is an area very special and unique in Greece and has fairly characterized as the "Alps" of Greece. The Syrta on which rests the back of the village has an altitude of 1460 meters. Ano Chora administratively belongs to the municipality of Nafpaktia and its population according to 2011 census is 225 residents.
Previously, the village was called Great Lompotina while the current name acquired it in 1930. Amazing are many theories about the origin of the name. The most convincing is the one that it comes from "the ancient Slavic word LODODINA and LODODO (=Chenopodium album, vegetable). So the most likely it is to be a Slavic name, since in Yugoslavia there is an old town with the same name. It seems with the advent of the Slavs in these parts, and who lived there about three hundred years, brought with them and the name of their origin. Ano Chora administratively belongs to Municipality of Nafpaktia and its population according to 2011 census is 225 residents.
Ano Chora  was a main village of Mountainous Nafpaktia and main administrative and spiritual center of the region. During the period of Turkish rule in Ano Chora operated the only organized school of Mountainous Nafpaktia, which is referred to as School of Lompotina. The school operated under the protection of Kanavaioi, an old wealthy Byzantine family, who later were landowners in the area of ​​Kravara (name of Nafpaktia as broader region). In school he studied for two years Kosmas of Etolia (an Orthodox Saint). During this time, the monk Ananias Dervisianos was teacher at the school.
After the founding of the Greek state, Ano Chora  was the capital of the local municipality in the region, the municipality of Apodotia, which initially operated in the period 1835-1912. In 1912 the municipality was abolished and Ano Chora became the base of the homonymous community. In 1996 the municipality of Apodotia was reconstituted with headquarters again in Ano Chora. The municipality was abolished for the second time in 2011 by the Kallikrates program was part of the Municipality of Nafpaktia.

Kentriki
46.KentrikiKentriki is a mountainous village in the prefecture of Etoloakarnania and is built at an altitude of 1,040 meters on the western slopes of Vardoussia and is one of the most mountainous villages of Etoloakarnania. The old Slavic name of the village until 1928 was Androvitsa or Andrivista.
Kentriki belongs to the Municipality of Nafpaktia, its population is 103 inhabitants and is 48 km from Nafpaktos.
The settlement dates back to the Ottoman domination: originally it was southern, but it was moved because of a water problem or the appearance of a pest. The area was initially a property of large landowners, which was transferred seriatim from one to the other: landowners were recruiting field workers who settled in the area, creating the first settlement. The French traveler François Puquilville mentions it during the Ottoman domination to be inhabited by 6 families between the villages of the Kravara.
It played a particularly important role in the Greek Revolution of 1821 as the battles of "Papadia" and "Myrmigiaria" took place in the wider region of Kentriki. The Battle of the "Myrmigiaria" was on October 22, 1828 and was a continuation of the Turkish siege that had begun in September in the village of Lompotina, today's Ano Chora, and led by Kitsos Tzavellas from Souli. Also, the "The bastions of Chief Safakas" in the northwest of Kentriki is there and testify the existence of the rebels during the Ottoman domination.
Near the village are two monasteries, the Monastery of Virgin Mary of Varnakova, a monastery founded in 1077 and one of the oldest in Greece and the Virgin Mary of Ampelakiotissa, founded in 1455.

Leptokarya
47.LeprokaryaLeptokarya is a mountainous village in the prefecture of Etoloakarnania. It is built at an altitude of 1,060 meters at the western end of Vardoussia and is one of the most mountainous villages of Etoloakarnania. It belongs to the municipality of Pylini and its population is 28 inhabitants.

 

 

 

Koutsogianneika
Small village of Εtoloakarnania and specifically it is in Mountainous Nafpaktia.

Anthofyto
49.AnthofytoAnthofyto is a village of Mountainous Nafpaktia in the prefecture of Etoloakarnania at an altitude of 600 meters. It has a population of 57 inhabitants along with Leptokaria settlement constitute the Local Community of Anthofyto belonging to the Municipal Section of Pyllini.
Anthofyto is built on a downhill and rocky terrain on the eastern slopes of Mount Vlassinias. The village is 28 km north of Nafpaktos. In the region have found traces of ancient life in the localities "Marathias" next to the right bank of the Mornos river, "Kastania", "Hani Ploumis" "Katavothra", traces of a small fortress at "Ai Lias of Leptokarya" and tombs in "Tourkos", "Ellinas" and others.
The old name of the village was Granitsa, either because of a type of oak tree endemic in the area or by the name of the original inhabitant who was called Granitsas. With the same name is mentioned in Ottoman documents of 1454 - 1455 which is listed as Granica (Granitsa), where considered big and affluent village and thus it is mentioned by the French traveler François Pouqueville in the list of Kravara area's villages where he records taht it is inhabited by 30 families. In 1912, the Community of Granitsa was established, while in 1930 the village was renamed to Antofyto, due to the verdant region.

Dafni
50.DafniDafni is a village-suburb of the city of Nafpaktos with a thousand inhabitants. It is located east of the city and has a spectacular view of the Mornos plain, the Corinthian bay and opposite of Peloponissos. Its inhabitants are more engaged in building, less with agriculture and little with livestock farming.
The place name Dafni appears in a written source in 1830 and is due to the well-known Dafni plant (aromatic evergreen tree), rather than to Dafnos (other name of Mornos River). The parish church of Aghios Athanasios was built a few years ago (1998) on a beautiful plateau with kermes oaks, cypresses, olives and fruit trees.
In many areas of the Dafni's region have been marked ancient traces (Kato Paliodafni, Koukougeros, Asfakorachi, Smaragdo, Anigma, Stroggyli and Plagia). Interesting is the Yusuf Aga Tower, which has been declared a historic listed monument. Kefalovrisos with the plane trees, poplars and other trees is also picturesque.

 

 Nafpaktos - 8th Village Station 

Nafpaktos old port

Nafpaktos is a seaside town of Prefecture of Etoloakarnania at the Corinthian Gulf, the capital of the former province of Nafpaktia. It is built between Antirrio and at the mouth of the River Mornos and is one of the oldest Greek cities enjoyed great prosperity periods and was linked to important historical events. This is confirmed by the excellent fortification, which begins from the port, continues with three successive walls and leads to the castle. It has been characterized as a traditional settlement and its population is 19.768 residents.
Nafpaktos is a city with great history. It is said that it took its name from the words ναύς (ancient Greek nafs, meaning "ship") and πηγνύειν (Ancient Greek pêgnuein meaning "to build"), which means "boatyard”. It appears for the first time in 1104 BC with Dorians, who in their descent, they used the city of Nafpaktos to construct rudimentary boats (rafts to be precise), when the "Nafpaktos" stayed heritage.
In 350 BC Philip II of Macedonia gives the city the Etolians. From 338 BC the city becomes the center of the Etolian League and there convined the councils of the League. And Nafpaktia was called Etolia Epictetus. After the wars with the Achaeans and the destruction of the city of Thermo, Nafpaktos is essentially the capital of Etolia.
In 1571, it became the Naval Battle of Nafpaktos. This is the battle that took place at the mouth of the Patraikos Gulf (Gulf of Lepanto), next to Echinades islands, and it has been the most striking stage of the war for the conquest of Cyprus (1570-1571). This naval battle was a historic event because with this was intercepted the threatening for the Europe Turkish naval power. With this name is known the great naval conflict that took place between the Ottoman fleet and the combined navies of Sacra Lega, a Holy Alliance that established by the Spanish, the Pope, Venice and some other Italian states, on 7th of October in 1571. The foreign historians use the name Battle of Lepanto (Naval Battle of Lepanto), from the medieval name of the town.
In 1821 the local residents took part in the Greek Revolution. Operations in the city began in May. The resistance of the Turks was successful and lasted several years. On 18th April, in 1829, was released finally from the Turks, when Andreas Miaoulis excluded the port of the city and forced the Turks to surrender the fort. Leaving the city the conquerors left behind a few Greek families which, indeed, came into conflict with the families coming from Souli (Botsarei, Tzavelei etc.) in which the newly established Greek State had given the Turkish mansions, in return for their contribution to the Revolution.

Sightseeing:

  • The castle that dominates on the hill with the pine forest behind the town.
  • The Venetian harbor.
  • The traditional houses in the city center with cobbled streets.
  • The old mansion of the family Mpotsaris which is converted into a private museum.
  • The two city beaches Psani and Gribovo and the nearby beaches of villages of Fokida.
  • The nearby bridge of Rio-Antirio.
  • The museum "Farmaki". Museum of the national liberation struggle of 1821.
  • faroi.com: The traditional stone lighthouse in the castle of Nafpaktos.

 

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Fast Stats

Some fast stats:

620

Km

19 800

elevation gain

57

villages

8

days