Trekking the Pindus Mountains Horseshoe trek in Northern Greece will challenge your expectations for this beautiful country. Yes,,it has incredible history, great scenery, friendly locals and delicious food. However, the stunning beaches on this famous Pindus Horseshoe trail are replaced by craggy mountains, mountain breezes and great hiking.
This region, known locally as Epirus, boasts some of the most scenic mountains in Greece. The famous Vikos Aoos National Park, known as Zagori, is the ideal location for nature lovers. The Zagori is especially pretty, with many authentic, stone villages and magnificent views of the Pindus Mountains, a hiker’s paradise.
Zagori is an area of great natural beauty, with striking geology and two national parks, one including the river Aoos and the Vikos Gorge, the other around Valia Kalda, to the east of the imposing snow-capped Mt Tymfi. The 46 or so villages of Zagori were interconnected by mountain roads and traditional arched stone bridges until modern roads were opened in the 1950s. The stone arched bridges were built by benefactions from expatriate merchants in the 18th century and replaced older wooden bridges.
The stunning peaks of Mount Gamila and Astraka offer demanding hiking amongst wildflowers. Gamila and Astraka are only 2 of 8 peaks that make up the massif of Tymfi Mountain, Astrak being the highest at 2,436 m (7,992 ft). Astraka Towers are vertical rock formations resembling a huge wall of rocky towers looming over the Mikro Papigo village.
Vikos Gorge, listed as the deepest gorge in the world, in proportion to its width, by the Guinness Book of Records, renowned for its natural beauty and crystal river pools is an unforgettable experience. Here you’ll find walls of up to 1 km in height, amidst a variety of ecosystems.
The gorge begins 600m after Monodendri village and constitutes a true natural monument. Its overall length exceeds 30km. Its depth varies. In Monodendri it reaches 600m and is at its narrowest point and in Vikos village it reaches 1,200m (more than 1,300m in its east part and approximately 1,100m in its west part). In its deeper part the gorge reaches approximately 2,200m width.
Due to its geological isolation and the absence of human presence, Vikos Gorge includes many rare plant and flower species. There have also been recorded more than 110 bird species, 19 serpent and amphibian species, as well as many rare butterfly species.
Throughout the Pindus Mountains Horseshoe trek, expect to enjoy famous Greek hospitality, stunning architecture, engaging history, wonderful food and drink and beautiful views.