Spring has sprung!
The temperature is climbing up to 28 degrees and we finally put aside our winter shoes and gone sock-free. While Athens slips quickly into its peak season with many visitors arriving each day eager to climb on top of the Acropolis, I'm her to tell you that now is the time to visit Zagori.
First things first.
For those unaware, Zagori is a beyond words beautiful region of northern Greece. It consists of more or less 46 chocolate-box pretty villages, loads of stone bridges, mesmerizing mountainous nature, floating rivers, exquisite local gastronomy and wine and wow-inspiring architectural aesthetics. And that's just the tip of that iceberg.
To put it photographically
Zagori during spring time means blooming flowers everywhere. The climate favors peonies and hydrangeas with each stem reaching almost unreal size proportions.
Crocus flowers also start to bloom randomly in the mountain slopes making everything look colorful and festive! It's natures way of telling hey I'm alive.
For those of you looking to get your adrenaline fix, now is the time to go rafting in Voidomatis river or hike around the villages. The weather will favor any excursion you have in mind. That also includes foraging mushrooms. It's fresh morilles season after all!
Throw them in a pan add some wild asparagus and some fresh eggs and enjoy the simplest yet most delicious meal. No worries if you don't know your way around pots, you can book a cooking lesson and brag about your creation - post eating it of course!
Vassilis Katsoupas, the owner of Kanela & Garyfallo restaurant where you can treat yourself to a finger-licking good mushroom lunch or dinner in those surroundings argues that:
"Spring is one of the most interesting times to visit Zagori with nature in full bloom. Take a camera and flower guide with you to help identify some wildflowers and plants dotting the treks along the Vikos Gorge. More than 1700 species of flora fill alpine meadows, forests and streams with their dazzling variety of colour and aromas. Maybe you 'll get lucky and spot one of the rare endemic orchids or one of the 250 medicinal plants of the region. Don't be too timid to look closely but leave in place for others to appreciate as well. You can always enjoy a mountain sideritis tea later at a local coffee shop. Perhaps wild food foraging is your thing in which case this is the time for wild asparagus, garlic, strawberries and mushrooms! Go for a mushroom safari with a local chef and learn about the fascinating world beneath our feet. Do not forget to go for at least one night stroll. The night sky looks clearer here than most places in Europe and this is a great place to take in the view of the eternity beyond. The haunting call of the Scops owl and the majestic song of the nightingales will give you shivers of joy and fill your heart with warmth and appreciation for this beautiful world we live in"
Check out our Zagori board on Pinterest for further inspo
Follow Kanela & Garyfallo restaurant on Facebook here
Location: Vitsa village, Zagori, Ioannina, Greece
T.: +30 26530 71671