Bucket List: Greece

Greece

Zion Canyon? Nope, it’s Vikos Gorge. Photo by Owen Zweers, via Wikipedia.com used under license

Region: Northern Greece, Europe

Logistical Difficulty:  Moderately HIGH

Hiking Difficulty: Moderately HIGH

Degree of Risk: Moderately Low

Estimated time required (including travel and logistics): One week

Greece is renowned for its beautiful islands and cultural treasures…NOT for its hiking. Which is a good thing for hikers because the northern interior is remote, rugged and very mountainous, yet uncrowded…one of the world’s great lesser known trekking regions.

Kontodimos bridge, Greece
Zagoria is famous for its delicate arched bridges. Photo by Justin Foulkes / Lonely Planet
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One of the most remarkable human inhabited places on Earth…the monasteries of Meteora. Photo by Chris Staring
https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/exploring-the-obscurities-of-meteora

Why Hike Here?

  • Rugged, impressive Pindus Mountains
  • Vikos Gorge, world’s deepest proportional to its length
  • The ancient Vadreto steps
  • Delicate, historic arched bridges
  • Astounding monastery of Meteora
  • Quirks of geography make Zagoria almost a land that time forgot.
  • Little known and uncrowded
  • Remote and unspoiled by European standards
  • Terrain mostly spared ravages of modern development
  • Lots of possible itineraries; staying in villages, huts, etc
  • Great scenery, food, culture
  • Generally Safe
  • Good weather likely
  • No altitude issues

But First Consider…

  • Plenty of opportunities to say, “It’s all Greek to me!” (IE we no habla Grecia)
  • Zagoria is a remote area, logistics are complex
  • Almost no supporting infrastructure
  • Navigating here might be problematic
  • Very little information/resources available on this Trek
  • You will be winging a lot of it
  • Expect hot, dry conditions in summer
  • Wildfires possible
  • A lot of up and down on stone steps;  not good for the knees
  • Meteora is NOT off the beaten path (it’s on the cover of the Lonely Planet guide for Greece) so expect serious crowds there
  • Greek economy hasn’t exactly been a model of stability lately; this could be a good or bad thing for a traveler

 

Hikes we want to do here:

  • Zagoria and Meteora*

*On the bucket list!