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Friday October 20 , 2017
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The best of Mt. Olympus, Mt. Kissavos (Ossa) and Meteora towers.

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Trip profile: An 8 day / 7 night walking program offering a selection of the best walks in the most interesting mountains and historical locations that the central Macedonia and the eastern and western Thessaly can offer. It involves the ascents to the summits of the two main mountains of the area (Mt. Olympus and Mt. Ossa), as well as the exploration through hiking, of two geological and historical musts of the area, the Tempi valley and the Meteora rocks! We really believe that this walking holiday program has it all!

 

Trip dossier:

Country: Greece.

Region: Mt. Kissavos (Ossa), Mt. Olympus, Meteora rocky towers, in northeast and northwest Thessalia and southeast Makedonia.

Duration: 8 days / 7 nights.
 
Period: May to October.
 
Type: Family and individuals, walking clubs and student groups. 
 
 
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Itinerary:

Day 1. Arrival at your accommodation. A hot shower at the hotel and a good taste of traditional Greek food at the village’s square, as you meet your guides, will make you forget all about the day’s travelling and introduce you slowly but steadily in to the spirit of real Greece. A good place indeed to start off our journey in to being together in nature.

Day 2. After breakfast, we are transferred to the high hills above the north rocky side of the Tempi valley, at a height of 220m. A very important geologically and geographically land mark, very rich in history and mythology. Here we start our walk. We follow a path, which taol-kiss-met3kes us along and over the cliffs of the Tembi Valley and onto the Pinios River. This is a high crossing of the valley with stunning views of the river down below and Mt. Kissavos, all the way along the trek. We will have a lot to talk about, as we cross this historic valley. The place holds amazing stories and myths from the very - very old times… We finish at a picturesque chapel where the picnic is waiting for us, at about 100m. A wonderful walk indeed!

The longest main section of the walk is almost flat and the last part is downhill. After the walk we will visit the near by village of Ambelakia, where you will have the opportunity to visit the Schwartz Museum and be introduced to the rich history of the place. Your remaining time will be free to explore or, indeed, relax at the peaceful village square enjoying a drink or a meal along with the locals. Altitude covered, 200m down. Approximate net walking time, 2.30 hours, easy.  

Day 3. Transfer to the village of Spilia at 850m. From Spilia  on the western slopes of Kissavos, we trek around the central parts of the mountain leading to the highest summit Prophet Elias (Profitis Elias) at about 1987m.  Being atop, will be rewarded with stunning panoramic views of the region including the Aegean Sea, the Plain of Thessaly, Mount Olympus, Mount Pelion, the Pinios River delta and in clear weather – not very unlikely – the huge pyramid of Mt. Athos emerging out of the sea in the very distance to the east. After a short descent to the Kanalos location at 1604m (4812ft), you are taken back to your hotel and the rest of your day is free. Altitude covered, 1137m up. Approximate net walking time,4.00' to 4.30' hours, easy / moderate. 
  
Day 4. Today we are transferred to Meteora. (1.30’ trip by road). A nature’s wonder! A religion’s stronghold and rock climbers’ paradise! Tradition, Byzantine architecture, theocracy and solitarily as well as a unique geological phenomenon and great rock climbing attraction internationally. All in one place! During a very nice walk through the conglomerate sandstone towers, you will admire nature’s and man’s creations. The path takes us to very impressive spots with little chapels carved in the rock. You can then visit the monasteries, being museums of the orthodox Christian faith and monastic life. In the evening, transfer back to your accommodation in Paleos Panteleimon. Altitude covered, 200m up and the same down. Approximate net walking time, 2.30 hours, easy / moderate.
  
Day 5. Transfer to Litochoro, the main citadel at the eastern feet of Mt. Olympus. Then, we move to the Prionia location and parking space at 1100m, where we start off our walk. A stunningly beautiful place, dominated by impressive rock faces and enormous mountain pine trees. A well paved path in a very rich pine and birch tree forest will take us up to 2100m and the refuge B or "Spilios Agapitos". During the walk the guide / s will introduce you to the very special Mt. Olympus flora. After settling in at the refuge, we will have plenty of time to soak up the energy and atmosphere of this very special place, as the refuge is situated on a natural balcony with amazing views all around! We will also discuss all about the next day's route, as we can see almost the full length of it high above our heads. Not map needed, its all there for real! After a good meal and rest, we spend the night here. Altitude covered, 1000m. Approximate net walking time, 3.00' to 3.30' hours, easy / moderate. 
 
ol-kiss-met5Day 6. Today we have an early start and continue up to the higher parts of the mountain. At about 2300m we leave behind the last trees and move up in alpine terrain aiming for the Muses’ Plateau at 2650m. After a long and very impressive traverse bellow the high summits of the mountain, the path leads us to this amazing place, the plateau and the mountain refuge where we are going to spend the night and have a well earned rest and a light lunch. The impressive north rock face of the "Throne of Zeus" summit dominates the area above us.  In the late afternoon we set off to climb the highest summits in Greece and the whole of the Balkans. First Mytikas at 2918m, the highest summit of Mt. Olympus and then Skolio at 2911m, the second highest. This is a unique trek around the main summits of Olympus, offering great views. After a picnic lunch, you will have the chance to appreciate the impressive scenery and feel Olympus’s unique “atmosphere”. Return to the plateau. Altitude covered, 600m up to the plateau and 218m up to Mytikas and an other 218m down from Mytikas back to the plateau. Approximate net walking time, 2.30' to 3.00' hours to the plateau, moderate / challenging walk and another 4.00' hours to Mytikas, Skolio and back to plateau, challenging / scramble.
  
Day 7. After breakfast we set off to climb the rocky summit "Throne of Zeus" (2909m), the third highest. A similarly challenging scramble like the one to Mytikas the previous day, leads us to the summit of the "Throne of Zeus". A wonderful view of the plateau itself and Mytikas. We descend via the same route and return to the plateau after an overall of 3.00' hours of challenging walk / scramble. After a rest and a meal at the refuge, we descend via a different route than the one we have ascended, the so called the Petrostrouga route, thus completing the circumnavigation of the great, central-east horseshoe of the mountain. Duration of walk 4.30’ to 5.00’ hours, moderate to strenuous. After you have come down, transfer back to Litohoro and your accommodation there for a good rest and prepare for your return.
  
Day 8. Transfer to the airport for the return flight.

 

Price:

850.00€ p.p.  (Based on two sharing room)

830.00€ p.p. (Based on three sharing room)

820.00€ p.p. (Based on four sharing room)

Single room supplement, 110.00€

The single, two, three and four sharing room options concern only the accommodation of days 1, 2, 3, 4 and 7. The accommodation of days 5 & 6 is in mountain refuges on Mt. Olympous.

 

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General information about the program 

Accommodation: Great care is taken in selecting appropriateol-kiss met4accommodation for your holiday. On days 1, 2, 3 & 4 your accommodation will be in the Kastania gi lodges in Paleos Pateleimon, or in the Hotel Vlassis in Stomio. While on Mt. Olympus on days 5 & 6 your accommodation will be in fully equipped mountain refuge, offering the facilities of a typical alpine refuge. On the last day prior to your return home, your accommodation will be in a well selected hotel or pension in Litochoro or the surrounding area.

Meals and meal plan: This trip is organized on a combination of half board and full board basis. On days 2, 3 & 4, the evening meals (not included in the price) can be taken in local restaurants or traditional Greek tavernas and this will give you the perfect opportunity to sample real Greek hospitality, delicious food and very fine wine, typical of the region. On days 5 & 6 (on Mt. Olympus), you can sample on your own, according to your preferences, the very good food at the mountain refuges (included in the price). Breakfast is included at your accommodation and on Mt. Olympus is provided by us (included in the price). The lunch pack for the day’s walk is also provided by us, taking of course under consideration your nutrition preferences, along with coffee or tea and cookies. On arrival day 1 as well as day 7, we all seat around the table for the welcome and farewell evening meals, which are included in the price as well.

Transport: Transfers to the day’s walk destination and back to your accommodation will be in minibus. Your excess luggage will be transferred by us from your accommodation in Paleos Panteleimon or Stomio to your accommodation in Litochoro on day 7.

From the airport to your accommodation, in case you do not have your own or hired means of transport (rented vehicle), the best suggested way is the public transport (train or bus), as our area of activities and the accommodation establishments are very close to the main road and rail streams of transport on the eastern side of the country. The nearest airport is the Makedonia airport of Thessaloniki, 1.00’ hour by train or bus to N. Pori or Rapsani train stations, being very close to the activities area and the various accommodation establishments. The “Proastiakos” train runs almost every hour from Thessaloniki to the above destinations for 28.00€ return. From the airport you take the bus (number 78) to the main train or bus station in Thessaloniki. It takes 20’ to 30’ and costs €01.00. The buses also run in the same manner, although a bit more expensive than the train. They run from Thessaloniki central bus station and stop at the Rapsani train station on their way to the south. From either station you have arrived (Rapsani or N. Pori), we pick you up and take you to your accommodation, 15’ away by road.

If you land at “Eleftherios Venizelos” airport in Athens, the train seems to be again the best option. Only the journey in this case takes 4.15’ to 5.00’ hours, depending up on the train you are using.  From the airport you take the metro or the Proastiakos train to the “Stathmos Larisis” (Larisa’s station) in Athens, from where you take the train to Larisa. We pick you up from the station in Larisa to transfer you to your accommodation, about 45 minutes by road.

Essential equipment: Apart from your seasonal clothing for the walks, you should bring with you the following:

. A day back pack (50 to 70 lt.).

. A pair of good walking boots.

. Fleecy jacket and pullover.

. Wind proof / water repellent breathable jacket.

. Extra tee shirts, under wear and three pairs of good socks for walking.

. While on Mt. Olympus, it is advisable to have a sheet or a very light sleeping bag for using it as a sheet, as the refuges provide only blankets.

. Water flask or simply a plastic water bottle.

. Sun glasses.

. Sun and head worming hat.

. Sun protective cream.

. Telescopic poles.

. Head lamp.

Group size and staff: Maximum group size is 16 people and minimum 4. This trip is led by Olympos Trek and supported by expert local guides. Guides are not provided for clients not taking part in the group’s walking program.

Responsible tourism: Tourism has an effect on any area. It is essential to minimize the negative impact that we may cause. We do not allow our clients and staff to damage the physical environment, living litter or rubbish lying around. Anything we take in to an area, we must take out again.

First aid: Our guides are qualified in first aid and curry a complete first aid kit at all times. We are also connected with the Greek mountain rescue and the National Center for Immediate Medical Help.

 

 

 

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“Waves and Torrents”

 

 

 

Adult individuals / Groups –13th of April to 13th of July & 7th of Sept. to 19th of October – 8 days / 7 nights

 

 

 

Trip Profile:An exhilarating multi-activity holiday, based around Mt. Olympus, Tempi Valley and Pinios river, Mt. Kissavos the coast and the Aegean and the north Mt. Pelion in Eastern Thessaly, set in a region of outstanding historical interest and natural beauty. This is a varied and exciting itinerary catering for people of all abilities and fitness levels. It covers a wide area, giving the opportunity to the participants to experience as many different places as possible, while enjoying our first class activities! All activities in this holiday program are full day activities. The detailed activities description is in our web site’s one-day activity presentation.

 

Itinerary. Please note: This itinerary can be subject to slight changes in response to variable local weather conditions concerning mainly the time sequence of the activities.

 

Monday.Arrival and welcome.You will be met by our local representative at the airport and transferred to your accommodation by taxi or mini bus if it is arranged so. If you travel from Thessaloniki airport by the public transport, then we meet you at the Rapsani train station, where you get off, as it is your destination and very close to any of the accommodations you have chosen. If you travel from Athens to Larisa or Rapsani, then we meet at Rapsani or at Larisa town train station. If you travel in your own rented car, you will be directed to your accommodation by us and the detailed information for the independent traveler about how you come in the area, in our website. In the evening after setting in, there will be a group welcome meal in one of the accommodations and a pre-tour introduction with your Guides.

 

Tuesday.Sea kayaking and sea cave abseiling.We explore in our kayaks the amazing sea caves of Veneton and swim in marvellous isolated beaches. Along the ride we stop at a small cove, and after the abseiling briefing, a 15min walk brings us to the top of the big cave and its roof hole. The sight is just breathtaking. You live through a unique experience as you abseil in space 35m down to the turquoise water. After swimming and diving in the cave, return to the path and the kayaks to continue our kayak ride and the sea cave exploration. Paddling time 2.30’ hours.

 

Note that this activity is very sensitive regarding to the weather conditions and it is likely to be moved to a later day in the week for more favourable conditions. Still, if this proves to be not possible throughout the week, the alternative will be:

 

Cycling and river canoeing in the Pinios river delta.We start from the seaside village of Stomion, and an 8km very pleasant bike ride through the fields and side streams of the delta, takes us to the main river and the starting point of our canoe ride. Rich vegetation, tree-lined riverbanks and a great variety of wild life, will accompany us to the mouth of the river and the open Aegean sea. We end up at an isolated beach for a swim and a picnic barbecue. (In case you do not wish to have this as an alternative, then the actual cost of the sea kayaking and sea cave abseiling will be refund).

 

Wednesday. Canyoning 1.From mid March to the end of June we go to the unique and a must for every canyoning lover, Kalypso full canyon with its amazing 60m waterfall!! Abseiling down this nature’s miracle is quite an experience which will stay in your mind for very long!

 

Then, a series of natural slides, as well as abseils and fly-foxing over long pools, swimming, jumping and diving, completes a great active day with lots of fun and a high dose of adrenaline!

 

In the weeks of July and August as well as September and October, we go to the Rakopotamos full canyon (Rakopotamos I & II) for a relatively different but equally exhilarating full day canyoning experience!

 

Thursday.Free dayto spend at the beach , sample some good local wine or visit places of interest in the greater area (we will be there to propose or organize it for you, especially if you do not have your own means of transport), or sample the shops and the cultural life of nearby Larisa, or a day trip to the impressive landmark of Meteora rocks and its monasteries. Today could be another arrival day, still being able to follow the full activity program, having in this case Monday as your free day.

 

Friday. Mountain Biking.A full day mountain biking on beautiful long crossings over Kissavos’s northern and eastern slopes with a great variety of mountain terrain culminating in views of the Pinios River Delta, Mount Olympus and the Aegean Sea. Halfway, we always come across a picturesque mountain village where we enjoy a drink in the village’s square with the locals. A picnic lunch will be provided en route. Length of cycling route about 40km of mainly forest dirt roads and a little asphalt.

 

Saturday.Rock climbing and forest adventure.Just after breakfast an early start brings us to a rock face on northern Kissavos with great view down towards the sea some 700m lower, where you are about to try, probably your first vertical steps. This is a great combination of physical and mental effort. The right body placement and focused concentration on the next move, will give unexpected great results, under the instruction and supervision of our guides. After a pleasant break for a light picnic meal at a close by café / restaurant in the forest, we move to a natural playground for big boys and girls, with an orienteering course to find our first abseiling point, abseiling in space and great zipwiring, in an absolutely natural environment!

 

Sunday. Rafting or inflatable kayaking / monorafting.This activity runs until the end of May, in the Pinios river, the Vernezi section (route). A thrilling rafting ride of plenty III and IV grade rapids and big waves to play with, take us to our rafting base, where you can enjoy a riverside barbecue prior to returning to your accommodation. In May the rafts give their place to inflatable kayaks and monorafts, due to less water in the river, for much greater control and personal feel than with the larger rafts. In both cases, a two-hour exiting ride will definitely give you great emotions and moments to remember! In June and in the weeks of July and August as well as September and October rafting and inflatable kayaking gives way to canyoning 2.

 

Canyoning 2.This time we go to Mt. Olympus. Enipeas II canyon will make sure that we get the best out of this activity. A unique canyon in the very heart of Olympus, with jumps, slides, a lot of swimming, abseiling down waterfalls – the longest being 45m!! – and very pleasant walks in and out of the canyon in amazing surroundings. Another special and unforgettable day out in the wild!

 

Note, that if the arrival days given in this itinerary are inconvenient for you, we will be glad to have you arriving on any other day of the week, starting your active holiday then, only missing your arrival day’s activity.

 

Extend your stay.It is possible to stay in Greece for an extra week as an extension to this holiday. If you decide to do so, you can choose to spread the above activities over the two weeks period of your stay. We will be happy to help you organize this.