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Greece Hellenic Alps Hiking Adventure View Full Screen Itinerary

6 NIGHTS, 7 DAYS, VIKOS - UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE, AOOS NATIONAL PARK, TREK THE LAKES OF DRAKOLIMNI AND THE MOUNT TYMFI GAMILA PEAK, HISTORIC THESSALONIKI, GREECE ALPINE ADVENTURE.

This holiday has been carefully designed by the team at Sandgrouse Travel & Expeditions so that you can enjoy a wonderful 7 day adventure in breathtaking surroundings within the Hellenic Greek Alps. Staying at a selection of comfortable and charming hotels and guest houses as well as spending one night in a mountain refuge, this Greece adventure holiday is designed to offer you a little of everything from culture and history to nature and activities.

Itinerary Highlights:

  • Experience the rich culture and millennia spanning history of Thessaloniki
  • Hike along numerous mountain trails in the Vikos ­ Aoos National Park
  • Have an amazing trekking experience, crossing the World's deepest gorge, Vikos
  • Trek to the summit of Mount Tymfi (Gamila Peak), 2497m
  • Do a two day hike to the Drakolimni (Lake of Dragons), an alpine lake at an altitude of 2050m
  • River trek by the crystal clear waters of the Voidomatis river  
  • Unwind in one of the National Park's natural swimming pools
  • Enjoy the delicious local cuisine of the Zagori villages
  • Walk around a 15th century castle in the city of Loannina
  • Spend a night at an exceptionally run mountain refuge, boasting amazing views of the alpine valleys below, all the way to Albania
  • Have a guided walking tour of the gravity defying ancient monasteries of Meteora 
Day 1

Day 1: Arrival in Thessaloniki

You will arrive at the Macedonia International Airport of Thessaloniki. You will be transferred to your Anatolia , a 4 star hotel in downtown Thessaloniki. Upon arrival and depending on your flight flight arrival time, you may choose to explore the sights of this magnifent city, which is the second largest city...

You will arrive at the Macedonia International Airport of Thessaloniki. You will be transferred to your Anatolia , a 4 star hotel in downtown Thessaloniki. Upon arrival and depending on your flight flight arrival time, you may choose to explore the sights of this magnifent city, which is the second largest city in Greece. The impressive White Tower is the city's most iconic landmark, along with the Museum of Byzantine Culture, the Archaelogical Museum, the Byzantine Church of Agios Demetrios, Rotunda and the Roman Forum, are all conveniently within a few minutes walk of one another. For those who want to get a first culinary taste of Northern Greece, the nearby neighbourhood of Ladadiki is full of traditional tavernas and is a popular destination all year round.

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Day 2

Day 2: Thessaloniki culture and history tour, Loannina and Megalo Papin

After a relaxing breakfast, you will have the opportunity to immerse yourself further into the history and culture of Thessaloniki. You will be met by your guide who will take you on a morning wallking tour of this magnificent city. Your walking tour guuide will lead you through the main...

After a relaxing breakfast, you will have the opportunity to immerse yourself further into the history and culture of Thessaloniki. You will be met by your guide who will take you on a morning wallking tour of this magnificent city. Your walking tour guuide will lead you through the main archaelogical sites and areas of cultural interest. Starting from the Hellenistic and Roman periods and eventually reaching the 19th and 20th centuries, you will visit glorious monuments, many of them being UNESCO world heritage sites and places where human activity has built the city's unique cultural identity. 

In the afternoon you leave Tessaloniki for the great outdoors and your adventure begins! Driving west you will head along the 'Egnatia' national highway on a 3 hour drive which will take you to the historic city of Loannina, Western Greece's largest city. This is a place with rich history, an important financial and cultural hub in Byzantine tiimes and the centre of the Greek Enlightenment during the Ottoman Period. The city is built on the hills around Lake Pamvotis. You will have some time in the city to relax and take in the surroundings, to walk around the 15th Century Castle of Ioannina located in the city's fortified old town. 

You will then continue your journey to the mountain village of Megalo Papingo found in the area of Zagori, which is the area you will be based for the remainder of the week.

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Day 3-4

Day 3-4: Hiking to the Peaks of Mount Tymfi and Alpine Lakes Drakolimni

Your exciting hiking adventure will begin today. You will be met by your experienced mountain trekking guide who will come to meet you and collect you from your guesthouse.You will set off at sunrise and begin your trek immediately by following a special trail that takes you high above the...

Your exciting hiking adventure will begin today. You will be met by your experienced mountain trekking guide who will come to meet you and collect you from your guesthouse.You will set off at sunrise and begin your trek immediately by following a special trail that takes you high above the tree line. It should take you approximately three to four hours to arrive at the renewable energy powered, mountain refuge of Astraka. This amazing refuge is found at an altitude of 1950m. You will have time to relax, snack and enjoy amazing views of the alpine peaks of Astraka (2400m) and lapatos (2250m) as well as the surrounding alpine valleys.

This mountain refuge will become your base for the next couple of days, as you take on the challenge of trekking to the summit of Mount Tymfi (The Gamila peak 2497m) and enjoy the visiting the famous 'Drakolimni', the 'Lake of Dragons'. This lake is an opal blue alpine lake that looks almost tropical in strong sunlight. The valley around the lake and the superlative mountain backdrop provides you with incredible photo opportunities. Depending on the season and the weather conditions, you have the option of climbing to the Gamila peak. By trekking over the peak, you can also reach the 16th century Monastery of 'Panagia Stomiou', built on the steep cliffs, with magnificent views over the Aoos river valley. 

At the end of day 4, you will return to your comfortable guesthouse in Megalo Papingo.

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Day 5

Day 5: World's Deepest Gorge - Vikos

Today is your chance to trek through the world's deepest gorge as listed by the Guinness Book of Records. Today's trek takes you through the Vikos Canyon, an must do experience for nature enthusiasts. You will be driven by your trekking guide to the village of Monodendri early in the...

Today is your chance to trek through the world's deepest gorge as listed by the Guinness Book of Records. Today's trek takes you through the Vikos Canyon, an must do experience for nature enthusiasts. You will be driven by your trekking guide to the village of Monodendri early in the morning where you can purchase necessary snacks and food for your trek. You will begin by walking down the path to the great canyon's base. Crossing the gorge is a five to six hour trek, walking along the banks of one of the Voidomatis River tributaries. You will pass under the shadows of Viko's steep cliffs, with plenty of great picnic opportunities to take in your surroundings as you continue towards the Voidomatis River. 

Voidomatis is one of the cleanest rivers in Europe and its water is potable and drinkable on site. You will continue upwards towards teh village of Vikos or if preferred head back to Megalo Papingo. This will be determined on preference and the guidance of your trekking guide. Upon arrival at your base, spend the evening relaxing after a long day's hiking. You can relax in the natural swimming pools of Rogovo.

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Day 6

Day 6: Papingo to Meteora Monasteries

For the last day of your trip you will head towards Central Greece. Leaving behind the lovely Papingo, you will pass through areas of heavy forestation and green valleys which eventually lead you to a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the highlights of your Greece trip. The gravity...

For the last day of your trip you will head towards Central Greece. Leaving behind the lovely Papingo, you will pass through areas of heavy forestation and green valleys which eventually lead you to a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the highlights of your Greece trip. The gravity defying Orthodox Monasteries of Meteora. 

The name Meteora, which translates into 'suspended in the air' is given to the only 6 surviving 14th century monasteries built on the tops of unique rocky cliffs. You will be met by a local guide who will take you on a hiking tour, an opportunity for you to take in the majesty of your surroundings whilst learning about what you see. The natural and cultural beauty is explained to you and this is surely one of the most amazing sights in Southern Europe. 

You will then head to the village of Kastraki, in the foothills of Meteora and the shadows of the high cliffs.

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Astraka Mountain Hut

TRADITIONAL MOUNTAIN REFUGE HUT, located on Mount Tymfi at an altitude of 1950 m (6332 ft). Able to accommodate up to...

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Anatolia Hotel Thessaloniki

CONVENIENT, ELEGANT AND STYLISH 4 STAR HOTEL located in heart of the financial, commercial and nightlife district of Thessaloniki.  The Anatolia uniquely...

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