Mountainous Corinth

The Magician of Nature

Mystique Mountains, Enchanted Lakes and Thrilling Hospitality

A serene landscape with spectacular mountain ranges and lovely villages unfolds in Mountainous Corinthia surrounded from the picture-perfect lakes of Dasiou, Stymfalia and Doxa. An explosive force of nature manifests itself through myriad of colors, smells and sounds that will remain indelible in your memory. Just like impregnable castles and fortified towers, the mountains of Corinthia rise in the fairytale atmosphere of hers embellished with verdant forests, serene villages, ancient ruins, old monasteries and emerald lakes that highlight the authentic charm of the Peloponnesian land. Everything seems like having sprung out of a painting of the Renaissance era! The region of mythical Stymfalia Lake, the multicolored Feneos valley and the alpine verdant Dasiou pond compose a natural canvas challenging travellers to discover the unexplored and unimaginable beauty of mountainous Corinthia. Whether you decide to stay for two, four or ten days, it is definite that mountainous Corinthia will let you absorb the magic of its unique sceneries. The spectacular landscapes create an authentic mountain destination that deserves your attention; forests with juniper, fir and black pine trees, flowing rivers and cosmic plateaus shadowed from impressive Ziria Mountains will surely take your breath away. The eight towering peaks of this mountain serve as a natural partition between the famed triangle villages of Trikala Corinthia and the valley of Feneos. A unique ecosystem twirls around off the beaten track forest roads, unexplored hiking trails followed from millions of colours and smells of autumn that await for the snow to cover Ziria’s ridges and highlands. Two storey houses with red tiles shine bright in spring, cobblestone squares with wooden benches compete for their whiteness under the snow the winter, fragrant aromas of the Greek coffee from the cozy shops, and narrow alleys that climb up to the highest spots of the neighborhoods antagonize for the first prize of the most picturesque image of the villages. Fir forests rest high up on the white clouds giving the impression that hang out from the sky while the green horizon stretches on the misty landscape within a mysterious atmosphere that creates an even more evocative experience for driving. Under the smoky smells of the fireplaces, it is definite that you will understand that this kind of eerie melancholy and rare beauty is hard to find. Grab the opportunity to live in such beautiful sceneries even for a getaway in mountainous Corinthia! Are you ready to explore the unexplored stories of this corner of mainland Greece?

Discover Mountainous Corinth

Best of Mountainous Corinth

The Cave of Hermes

The Cave of Hermes is one of the most interesting caves of the Peloponnese peninsula situated on the eastern side of Ziria Mountain. Although the cave is situated at an altitude of 1700 meters, and the hike up there can be challenging enough, its extraordinary and peculiar beauties will reward you anyway. Mythology has it that Hermes travelled to Thessaly to steal the oxes of from the son of Helios, God Apollo, in order to construct Ziria Mountain and the first lyre of his from the shell of a turtle and the nerves of an ox. Later on, ingenious Hermes gave away his lyre to Apollo to applease him, as he arrived angry on Ziria. Even today, one of the peaks of Ziria is named Helydorea, meaning turtle skinning in remembrance of the construction method of his great music instrument invented from the newborn god. Hermes’ Cave was used as the hideway of the immortal oxes he had stolen from Apollo. In ancient times, this actual cave was a place of worship to Olympian God Hermes and people used to come to the cave in order to show their devotion in return of Hermes’ help and guidance. Nowadays, Hermes Cave is considered as an important natural monument of Mountainous Corinthia with eight diverse halls. The cave’s age counts millions of years manifested through the voluminous stalactites and stalagmites along with a rare white stone decoration that will amaze your instantly.

The Environmental Museum of Stymfalia

The Environmental Museum of Stymfalia was an initiative of the Thematic Network of Museums of the Piraeus Bank Group. It is a very interesting museum designed to contribute to the enhancement of human inderdependence with nature and public awareness. Models, digital represenantations, movies and tours from the museum employees will guide you through the museum of Environemnt. The view of the lake from the wooden balcony of the museum is itself a reason to visit the museum.

The Lake of Doxa

The Lake of Doxa is one of the most beautiful lakes of Greece located in Feneos valley on the western side of the prefecture of Corinthia. Heading towards the saddle of Kastania, with spectacular views to the valley of Feneos and its quaint villages, travellers will be amazed from this tiny valley that is surrounded from the high mountains. Famous for its sinkholes that swallow the river waters, Feneos Valley was conquered from gods, heroes and travellers since the very ancient times. Indeed, demigod Heracles tried to drain its marshes with various projects while the ancient believed that Feneos valley was one of the gates of Hades. However, today it is believed that Feneos waters feed Stymfalia Lake and Ladonas River. The interesting landscape is complemented with the artificial Doxa Lake with its turquoise waters and its verdant shores; it is a magical natural monument that will instantly amaze you. The dam of the lake was constructed in 1994 in order to serve irrigation needs of crops in the region, and thus arose the artificial Doxa Lake. Else known as Feneos Lake, Doxa is perhaps the most transparent lake that your have ever explored. Characterized as one of the most beautiful spots of Mountainous Corinthia, calm Doxa with its crystalline emerald waters that mirrors the exquisite natural sceneries of the surrounding rich fauna will take your breath away. Whether you want to enjoy a relaxing promenade, you desire to take millions of pictures or you want to laid on the grass, Doxa Lake will offer you unforgettable moments of utmost serenity. It is a must to walk to the tiny Chapel of Agios Fanourios, else known as Paleomonastiro of Agios Georgios, to admire the spectacular views to the lake. However, if you want to get another perspective of Doxa’s landscape, head to the Monastery of Agios Georgios that distinguishes for its wonderful wall painting and its panoramic views of the balconies where you can also taste rose sweet made from the monks! It is worth mentioning that the months decided to transfer the monastery on the mountains since the level of water rose dangerously sometimes. Before you leave, make sure to drive around the lake in order to admire the picture-perfect sceneries, especially in spring and autumn!

The Lake of Stymfalia

The Lake of Stymfalia is one of the most mythical lakes of Greece located on the northeast part of the prefecture of Corinthia. Characterized as a protected area of the European Network of NATURA 2000, Stymfalia Lake is one of the most important ecosystems of Peloponnese. A must stop is the Environment Museum in the village of Kionia that houses the permanent exhibition that ties the ecosystem of the lake in human history through the centuries from the labors of Hercyles until the Middle Ages. The view of the lake from the wooden balcony of the museum is itself a reason to visit. Off road aficionados can follow the muddy dirt road that leads to the ancient city of Stymfalia hidden behind dense reed beds. If you want to explore, however, the entire lake, you should follow the most scenic route that follows the tour of Stymfalia from the village of Lafka; the forest service has installed kiosks in the positions with incredible views while bird watching lovers will have the opportunity to admire more than 160 rare species of animals and birds. On the northern side of the lake, a tiny archaeological site accommodates parts of temples, public buildings and fortifications of the Ancient Town Of Stymfalos. On the banks of the mythical legends of Stymfalia Lake, in an ancient place famous for thousands of years, where Hercules made his sixth labor relieving people from terrible Stymfalia hens that ravaged the area, travellers will have the opportunity to explore the genuine spirit of Greek mainland at its finest.

The Monastery of Agios Georgios Feneos

The Monastery of Agios Georgios Feneos is an impressive monastery located within the lush forests of Helmos Mountain. Before its construction, the monks used to reside within the famous Paleomonastiro (old monastery) that was abandoned due to the fact that the waters of the lake flooded the monastery. According to tradition, the old abbey of Agios Georgios was founded from a monk of Kalavryta during the 14th century. From the old monastery, a small church still exists that has been renamed to Agios Fanourios. As attested from the inscription of the wall near the monastery, Agios Georgios Monastery was founded in 1693, and it was stavropegic indicated from the 1797 list of the Constantinople Patriarchate. It has been renovated (1754) into three-storey with an internal courtyard. The church of the moanstery is dedicated to Agios Georgios Tropeoforos is located at the center of the countryard. The church distinguishes for its beautiful wall paintings influced from the Cretan School, large wooden chandelier amd its magnificent carved iconostasis. It is worth mentioning that that the monastery played a decisive role in the revolution of 1821 since it became the headquarters of the Friends Society. From the balcony of the monastery, visitors can enjoy panoramic views of the alpine scenery of Lake Doxa while also taste the traditional sweet rose made with extreme care in the monastery.

The Mountain of Ziria

The Mountain of Ziria is the second highest mountain of the Peloponnese peninsula situated on the southeastern part of Corinthia. With an elevation of 2.376 meters at the location of Psili Korfi, Ziria Mountain is one of the few Greek mountains with eight peaks of a height over two thousands meters. Actually, Ziria is the second highest mountain of the Peloponnese peninsula with an elevation of 2.376 meters at the location of Psili Korfi. Blessed with myths and legends, since mythology has it that Hermes was born in a sacred cave on the mountain while Pliades Muses resided on Ziria, this mountain is divided from Flambouritsa Valley into two parts, Small Ziria and Large Ziria. It is worth mentioning that Ziria Mountain has been described as regions of special interest from the European Network of Natura 2000. Adventure aficionados can hike up at the observatory (908m) of Ziria to enjoy a unique view of northeastern Peloponnese including the eastern part of Achaia and Helos, the Gulf of Corinth, the southern part of Corinthia as well as northeastern Arcadia. Endless unspoilt forest spread around the massive slopes of Ziria creating a verdant landscape of pine and fir trees with lots of flowing springs and fountains. The plateau, owing to the water collected from Dasiou Lake, is one of the most beautiful locations of Ziria with spectacular views. Sports lovers will find the Sports Center of Ziria on the northeastern side of the mountain, ten kilometers away from the villages of Trikala, with a ski piste for beginners and an advanced ski piste with a small lift. As the tracks are soured from trees, it can be a dangerous descent for skiers; however, your adrenaline might elevate higher that the lift itself. At last but not least, hiking aficionados should search for the sign-posted hiking paths that will charm them instantly from the unique natural beauties of this mountain.

The Villages of Trikala

The villages of Trikala  are three of the most famous mountain villages of Peloponnese located on the prefecture of Corinthia. Nestled on the northeastern slopes of Ziria Mountain, at an altitude of 1000 meters, the neighborhoods of Ano, Mesa and Kato Trikala is a favorite weekend escape of the Athenians. Plane, oak, walnut and chestnut trees form the colourful puzzle of this corner of Greece. According to the book of the Patriarch of Jerusalum Chrysanthos Notaras, the three villages of Trikala distinguish for their abundance of water, their fresh air and their wine since 1716; certainly, the three neighborhoods of Trikala of Corinthia are one of the most popular mountain escapes of the Peloponnese peninsula that even visitors in ancient times came to enjoy their wonderful climate by seeking remedy to the gods’ sanctuaries. First off, travellers should visit the Monastery of Agios Vlasios because of the holy icon found in a nearby cave who contributed significantly to the liberation struggle against the Ottomans. In terms of religious monuments, the Church of Agios Dimitrios in Kato Trikala that distinguishes for its amazing frescoes with expressionist features and vibrant colours as well as the Temple of the Transfriguration with the excellent icon of Saint John the Baptist and the Monastery of Virgin Mary with its exceptional murals dating from the 18th century. In Ano Trikala, it is a must to visit the Mansion of Notareas noble and powerful family, one of the oldest houses of Corinthia, who settled here in the 16th century and played an important role during the Ottoman occupation and the Civil War. Do not opt out to visit the Cobblestone Square Of Kato Trikala with the perennial plane trees where you can enjoy a hot cup of coffee.

Archaeological Sites

The Ancient Town of Feneos was a city-state of ancient Arcadia. It was the largest and one of the most important cities of Arcadia. According to historical data, the first settlement was founded from the Pelasgians followed from the Arcadians. In 1500 BC, the Achaeans created the Mycenean center of Feneos. The Mycenaean center of Feneos created Achaeans in 1500 BC. It is worth mentioning that the people of Feneos participated in the Trojan War and the Persian Wars. Archaeological excavations have brought to light a series of findings along with ancient wall, the temple of Asclepius, remains of buildings, statues and plaques tbat are exhibited in the archaeological museum of Mesino. Today, the visitor can also admire the sinkholes that are still operational.

The Ancient Town of Stymfalos was one of the city-states of Ancient Arcadia that was founded from Stymfalos, son of Arcadas, who named the entire region after him. Ancient Stymfalos was continuously inhabited from the 4th to the 19th century AD. According to the historical texts of Pausanias, the city was founded from Stymfalos was located in another region than the current one close to Stymfalia Lake. Archaeological excavations from the Canadian Archaeological Institute have brought to light a series of findings including the ancient agora along with the remains of buildings from the Roman period. However, archaeological research has found that the city consisted from a theater, a church, an area, a fountain surrounded from a wall. Parts of the ancient city are covered from the waters and vegetation of Stymfalia Lake.

The Sanctuary of Nemean Zeus developed in the beginning of the 6th century BC, with the institution of the Panhellenic Nemean Games in a region where human activity had been present since prehistoric times. The first temple of Zeus and the first two phases of the Heroon were constructed during the Archaic period while nine “Oikoi-Treasuries” were erected in the 5th century BC. At the end of the 4th century BC, a new temple of Zeus, baths, a hostel, a Stadium and the 3rd phase of the Heraion were built as part of a large construction project. After the transfer of the games to Argos, in 270 BC, the sanctuary fell into decline. During the 5th and the 6th centuries AD, a small community grew in the vicinity and a basilica was erected on the ruins of the hostel. This community was dissolved during the raids of the Slavs in 580-590 AD. Archaeological research brough to light the ancient stadium of Nemea, in which Panhellenic games were held every two years in honour of Opheltes, which was built at the end of the 4th century BC, as part of a renovation project of the Sanctuary. Important artifacts of the site are exhibited in the Archaeological Museum of Nemea.

Churches and Monasteries

The Church of Agios Dimitrios is located in the neighborhood of Kato Trikala. The church was constructed in 1697, and it was renovated from the owner of the hotel Pliadon Gi since it is situated behind the hotel. Agios Dimitrios church distinguishes for its well-preserved wall paintings with their expressionist motivs and their wonderful colours.

The Chapel of Agios Fanourios is one of the most beautiful chapels of mountainous Corinthia located on the banks of Doxa Lake. The original monastery of Agios Georgios was located on this spot, which was moved on its panoramic position when the monks were afraid of the water levels of the lake. Agios Fanourios chapel offers a wonderful view of the lake.

The Church of Agios Georgios Zaholi is one of the most important religious monuments of mountainous Corinthia situated in the village of Evrostini. Tradition has it that the church was constructed within 39 days in 1811, after strong efforts of the villagers, since the Turkish commander set a deadline for its construction to 40 days, otherwise it would become a mosque.

The Church of Agios Nikolaos is one of the most beautiful church of mountainous Corinthia located in the neighborhood of Ano Trikala. Renovated from Notara family in 1805, the church distinguishes for its beautiful ecclesiastical icons gifted from Panoutsos Notaras.

The Church of the Virgin on the Rock is perched on the rocks above Tarsos village. Just like the Meteora Monasteries, the monastery of the Virgin on the Rock is one of the most unique monuments of Mountainous Corinthia. The temple was built during the 14th century, and it is always open for travellers who want to enjoy splendid views of Ziria Mountain. Above the rock hill of the monastery, there lies the cave of the Virgin on the Rock, an ancient hermitage dedicated to Virgin Mary. The upper floor was used as a pantry as well as a refugee for the local residents during the difficult periods of the Ottoman rule.

The Monastery of Agios Georgios Feneos is an impressive monastery located within the lush forests of Helmos Mountain. Before its construction, the monks used to reside within the famous Paleomonastiro (old monastery) that was abandoned due to the fact that the waters of the lake flooded the monastery. According to tradition, the old abbey of Agios Georgios was founded from a monk of Kalavryta during the 14th century. From the old monastery, a small church still exists that has been renamed to Agios Fanourios. As attested from the inscription of the wall near the monastery, Agios Georgios Monastery was founded in 1693, and it was stavropegic indicated from the 1797 list of the Constantinople Patriarchate. It has been renovated (1754) into three-storey with an internal courtyard. The church of the moanstery is dedicated to Agios Georgios Tropeoforos is located at the center of the countryard. The church distinguishes for its beautiful wall paintings influced from the Cretan School, large wooden chandelier amd its magnificent carved iconostasis. It is worth mentioning that that the monastery played a decisive role in the revolution of 1821 since it became the headquarters of the Friends Society. From the balcony of the monastery, visitors can enjoy panoramic views of the alpine scenery of Lake Doxa while also taste the traditional sweet rose made with extreme care in the monastery.

The Monastery of Agios Vlasios is located in the neighborhood of Ano Trikala. The monastery is one of the most cultural and historical landmarks of the region that was founded during the first two centuries of the second millennium AD. According to tradition, the miraculous icon of Agios Vlasios was found in a large cave on the huge rock standing opposite the moanstery around 1400. Since then, the monastery is probably the most important pilgrimage of Agios Vlasios in Greece. During the Ottoman domination, the monastery, which was related to the family Notaraion, functioned as an important cultural center for the region. Until the beginning of last century it was male monastery while it has transversed into a female monastery under the guidance of Abbot Efrosinis. The monastery celebrates in honour of the saint on February 11 and September 14.

The Monastery of Zarakas was one of the most fortified monasteries of Corinthia situated on the eastern side of Ancient Stymfalos. The monastery was founded from Frank monks who arrived on the region by order of Pope Innocent III to settle monastic orders in Greece the time when the Knights of the 4th Crusade destroyed the Byzantine Empire. The founding date of the monastery is still unknown, but historical evidence suggests that it was founded in the early of the 13th century. Until 1260, the monastery appears sporadically in the lists of the General Synod of the Cistercian Order while it was among the few that did not need to participate in the mandatory annual meeting of the Monastic Order. After its abandonment in 1276, the monastery was excavated in 1928 and 1962 respectively from Orlandos and Stikas. In 1993, the Archaeological Service has granted permission excavations of the site in the Canadian Archaeological Institute. Today, a series of remains are still visible on site including parts of the basilica and its vaults and remains of Romanesque buildings.

Monuments

The Μansion of Notareon was one of the most impressive mansions of Corinthia located in the neighborhood of Ano Trikala. The family of Notareon played an important role in Orlov Revolt (1770), the Revolution of 1821 and the subsequent Civil War. Unfortunately, the building is in bad condition.

The Tower of Kordis is a wonderful building of the 16th century located in the village of Pyrgos. It is a three-storey building that consists from a ground floor with rifles, a stone stairway, a floor with three windows, rifles and the main entrance and the residence floor. Kordis Tower was used as a residence from Albanian Pepeli Aga.

The Watemill of Dimakos is the sole watermill of mountainous Corinthia that has been preserved in the region and it is situated in the village of Sivista.

Museums

The Archaeological Museum of Feneos is located in the region of Ancient Feneos. The museum exhiobits an interesting colletion of sculptures, mosaic and pottery objects found in the excavations in Ancient Feneos. Of the most interesting exhibits is the statue of Goddess Hygeia.

The Arcaheological Museum of Nemea is located in the town of Nemea The museum contains a collection of pictures of Nemea by travellers of the 18th and 20th centuries, coins of ancient visitors to Nemea, items related to the athletic activity on the site, prehistoric finds (pottery, tools, weapons etc.) from sites in the district of Nemea, pottery and jewellery from the Mycenaean cemetery at Aidonia and the settlement of Aghia Eirene, architectural parts from monuments at Nemea and other sites, and a collection of inscriptions from Nemea, Phlius and Petri. (Source: odysseus.culture.gr )

The Folklore Museum of Feneos is a small private folklore museum with an interesting collection from daily traditional objects of the daily life of the residents that present the habits, traditions and the way of life of the region. The museum is located in the village of Syvista.

The Environmental Museum of Stymfalia was an initiative of the Thematic Network of Museums of the Piraeus Bank Group. It is a very interesting museum designed to contribute to the enhancement of human inderdependence with nature and public awareness. Models, digital represenantations, movies and tours from the museum employees will guide you through the museum of Environemnt. The view of the lake from the wooden balcony of the museum is itself a reason to visit the museum.

Natural Beauties

The Canyon of Flabouritsa with Sythan River is a protected region of European network of Natura 2000 that distinguishes for its rich flora and fauna situated between the clusters of Mikri and Megali Ziria. Flambouritsa boasts incomparable beauty with perennial trees and rare fauna that forms a relaxing landscape. Fir, oak, pine, maple, cedar, chestnut, cypress, walnut and cherry trees create a unique natural environment offering a great opportunity to the travellers to explore the exquisite nature of the Greek countryside.

The Cave of Hermes is one of the most interesting caves of the Peloponnese peninsula situated on the eastern side of Ziria Mountain. Although the cave is situated at an altitude of 1700 meters, and the hike up there can be challenging enough, its extraordinary and peculiar beauties will reward you anyway. Mythology has it that Hermes travelled to Thessaly to steal the oxes of from the son of Helios, God Apollo, in order to construct Ziria Mountain and the first lyre of his from the shell of a turtle and the nerves of an ox. Later on, ingenious Hermes gave away his lyre to Apollo to applease him, as he arrived angry on Ziria. Even today, one of the peaks of Ziria is named Helydorea, meaning turtle skinning in remembrance of the construction method of his great music instrument invented from the newborn god. Hermes’ Cave was used as the hideway of the immortal oxes he had stolen from Apollo. In ancient times, this actual cave was a place of worship to Olympian God Hermes and people used to come to the cave in order to show their devotion in return of Hermes’ help and guidance. Nowadays, Hermes Cave is considered as an important natural monument of Mountainous Corinthia with eight diverse halls. The cave’s age counts millions of years manifested through the voluminous stalactites and stalagmites along with a rare white stone decoration that will amaze your instantly.

The Lake of Doxa is one of the most beautiful lakes of Greece located in Feneos valley on the western side of the prefecture of Corinthia. Heading towards the saddle of Kastania, with spectacular views to the valley of Feneos and its quaint villages, travellers will be amazed from this tiny valley that is surrounded from the high mountains. Famous for its sinkholes that swallow the river waters, Feneos Valley was conquered from gods, heroes and travellers since the very ancient times. Indeed, demigod Heracles tried to drain its marshes with various projects while the ancient believed that Feneos valley was one of the gates of Hades. However, today it is believed that Feneos waters feed Stymfalia Lake and Ladonas River. The interesting landscape is complemented with the artificial Doxa Lake with its turquoise waters and its verdant shores; it is a magical natural monument that will instantly amaze you. The dam of the lake was constructed in 1994 in order to serve irrigation needs of crops in the region, and thus arose the artificial Doxa Lake. Else known as Feneos Lake, Doxa is perhaps the most transparent lake that your have ever explored. Characterized as one of the most beautiful spots of Mountainous Corinthia, calm Doxa with its crystalline emerald waters that mirrors the exquisite natural sceneries of the surrounding rich fauna will take your breath away. Whether you want to enjoy a relaxing promenade, you desire to take millions of pictures or you want to laid on the grass, Doxa Lake will offer you unforgettable moments of utmost serenity. It is a must to walk to the tiny Chapel of Agios Fanourios, else known as Paleomonastiro of Agios Georgios, to admire the spectacular views to the lake. However, if you want to get another perspective of Doxa’s landscape, head to the Monastery of Agios Georgios that distinguishes for its wonderful wall painting and its panoramic views of the balconies where you can also taste rose sweet made from the monks! It is worth mentioning that the months decided to transfer the monastery on the mountains since the level of water rose dangerously sometimes. Before you leave, make sure to drive around the lake in order to admire the picture-perfect sceneries, especially in spring and autumn!

The Lake of Stymfalia is one of the most mythical lakes of Greece located on the northeast part of the prefecture of Corinthia. Characterized as a protected area of the European Network of NATURA 2000, Stymfalia Lake is one of the most important ecosystems of Peloponnese. A must stop is the Environment Museum in the village of Kionia that houses the permanent exhibition that ties the ecosystem of the lake in human history through the centuries from the labors of Hercyles until the Middle Ages. The view of the lake from the wooden balcony of the museum is itself a reason to visit. Off road aficionados can follow the muddy dirt road that leads to the ancient city of Stymfalia hidden behind dense reed beds. If you want to explore, however, the entire lake, you should follow the most scenic route that follows the tour of Stymfalia from the village of Lafka; the forest service has installed kiosks in the positions with incredible views while bird watching lovers will have the opportunity to admire more than 160 rare species of animals and birds. On the northern side of the lake, a tiny archaeological site accommodates parts of temples, public buildings and fortifications of the Ancient Town Of Stymfalos. On the banks of the mythical legends of Stymfalia Lake, in an ancient place famous for thousands of years, where Hercules made his sixth labor relieving people from terrible Stymfalia hens that ravaged the area, travellers will have the opportunity to explore the genuine spirit of Greek mainland at its finest.

The Lake of Dassiou is the most unknown lake of Morias and the most mountainous lake of Peloponnese located on the highlands of Ziria Mountain. Lovers of off-road driving will have the opportunity to follow a route of unique natural beauty unfolding from Goura village within the premises of Ziria Sports Center. Once informed from the chalet on the condition of the forest roads of mountainous Corinthia, travellers can follow, even with a conventional vehicle depending on weather conditions, the dirt road that leads to the banks of the seasonal Dasiou Lake nestled at an altitude of 1500 meters. In spring, the depth is more than two meters while in autumn it is limited to 50 centimeters; after December, the surface of Dasiou freezes and you can safely walk over the entire surface or even skate. Around this majestic natural mirror of Dasiou unfolds an extensive fir and black pine forest with marvellous views to the peaks of Ziria Mountain. A tiny lake of incomparable beauty challenges lovers of hiking and mountain biking to explore the unique nature of hers as it is protected from the European Network of Natura 2000 along with the plateau of Ziria.

The Mountain of Ziria is the second highest mountain of the Peloponnese peninsula situated on the southeastern part of Corinthia. With an elevation of 2.376 meters at the location of Psili Korfi, Ziria Mountain is one of the few Greek mountains with eight peaks of a height over two thousands meters. Actually, Ziria is the second highest mountain of the Peloponnese peninsula with an elevation of 2.376 meters at the location of Psili Korfi. Blessed with myths and legends, since mythology has it that Hermes was born in a sacred cave on the mountain while Pliades Muses resided on Ziria, this mountain is divided from Flambouritsa Valley into two parts, Small Ziria and Large Ziria. It is worth mentioning that Ziria Mountain has been described as regions of special interest from the European Network of Natura 2000. Adventure aficionados can hike up at the observatory (908m) of Ziria to enjoy a unique view of northeastern Peloponnese including the eastern part of Achaia and Helos, the Gulf of Corinth, the southern part of Corinthia as well as northeastern Arcadia. Endless unspoilt forest spread around the massive slopes of Ziria creating a verdant landscape of pine and fir trees with lots of flowing springs and fountains. The plateau, owing to the water collected from Dasiou Lake, is one of the most beautiful locations of Ziria with spectacular views. Sports lovers will find the Sports Center of Ziria on the northeastern side of the mountain, ten kilometers away from the villages of Trikala, with a ski piste for beginners and an advanced ski piste with a small lift. As the tracks are soured from trees, it can be a dangerous descent for skiers; however, your adrenaline might elevate higher that the lift itself. At last but not least, hiking aficionados should search for the sign-posted hiking paths that will charm them instantly from the unique natural beauties of this mountain.

The Sports Center of Ziria is located on the northwestern side of Killini Mountain, in the plateau between its two mountaintops. The center is located where Little Ziria (2.080 m) and Great Ziria (2.374 m) are separated from Flabouritsa ravine, only 10 kilometers away from Ano Trikala. It is a place for fun and action and has parking for almost 200 vehicles. The Ziria Athletic Center has a ski slope with a baby lift 100m high and also a 450 m sliding lift. The personnel are helpful and ready to assist visitors, while equipment, boots, skis and security equipment are also available. Furthermore, ski lessons are given and there is the possibility of night skiing and skiing endurance, while the center is also suitable for the little visitors and their sleds. The space is decorated with a beautiful chalet at the base of the 500m long ski slope, where you can enjoy a hot beverage and various snacks. Apart from skiing, there are also more activities available, like renting a snowmobile or an ATV, and exploration starting from the small plateau.The morphology of the area is suitable even for beginners. Lake Dasio and Hermes Cave Next are right next door, where mythology has it that the restless god was born there. Two mountain shelters, on the east and west of the plateau, offer accommodation to the visitors after placing a reservation. We should also mention that the area is located within the boundaries of Killini, which belongs to the Natura 2000 network. You can choose from a great variety of lodgings, like hotels, pensions and rooms to let, all located in the area. Climbing up Ziria (Killini) the sheer natural beauty and the view of the Corinthian Gulf and the opposite “Roumeli” (Central Greece) will charm you for sure. So, put on your skis and here we go! (Source: Mythicalpeloponnese.com )

The Valley of Feneos is one of the largest valleys of Peloponnese located over a vast fertile plain of the wet side of the prefecture plain at an altitude of 700 meters. Crowned from dense and verdant forests and surrounded from the massive slopes of Helmos, Kyllini and Oligyrto Mountains, Feneos Valley used to be a lake whose waters were channeled gradually in sinkholes offering a fertile land capable of rich fruiting to the local residents. Nevertheless, the sinkholes led to Ladon River and blocked up the region periodically by flooding the valley and destroying the crops. In 1821, the sinkholes congested and created a lake area of 8 square miles within twenty years; for this reason, the residents were forced to leave since most of the villages were flooded. Even Pausanias during his wonderings noted that there is a region that the water level of the lake remains barren and naked without vegetation. Today, Feneos Valley has been cultivated with legumes, cereals, oats, potatoes, wheat, lentils, sunflowers, walnuts and the PDO vanilla beans amongst others. Of particular interest in the wider region is Doxa Lake with its turquoise waters and its verdant shores, a magical natural monument that will instantly amaze you, as well as the Monastery of Agios Georgios with its astonishing views that is also known for the sweet rose made from the monks and Ancient Feneos with the ruins of the ancient city. It is also worth visiting the quaint villages of Feneos including Goura, Panorama, Mesino, Tarsos and Steno in order to discover the authentic beauty of the Greek countryside.

Promenades and Villages

Evrostini is a mountainous village located on the northern side of Corinthia prefecture. A long drive through pine forests and olive groves will guide you to the picturesque village of Evrostina where the view towards the Corinthian Gulf will astonish you. In the place where Hermes constructed his first lyre, travellers will have the opportunity to discover the pure beauty of Mother Nature; head to the Stream of Mili, a natural ravine with ponds full of trouts, waterfalls and wooden bridges, to enjoy the nature and visit the Plateau of Zaholi to wander around the thick black pine forest. It’s a must to visit the Church of Agios Georgios with its impressive heirloom and its seventeen domes located at the entrance of the village as well as the recently restored Byzantine chapel of Our Lady of Shelters (Panagia Katafygiotissa) with its wonderful architecture hanging off a cliff. Evrostini offers a unique experience to nature lovers and hiking aficionados. From Evrostini, travellers should visit Kato Tarsos in order to admire the monastery of Virgin on the Rock that is perched on the rocks.

Goura is a mountainous village located on the west side of the prefecture. Thirty kilometers away from Stymfalia, thia charming village of mountainous Corinthia will give you the opportunity to make a journey through time. The central square with its stone church, its old mansions and its traditional cafeterias cerates an atmospheric setting from the 19th century. Worth visiting sights include the archaological collection of Goura, the four great stone mansions of the 19th century of the families of Sarlis, Mourtis, Rombokos and Kapelou and the church of Taxiarhes.

Kalliani is a mountainous village located on the northwest side of Ziria Mountain. Built at an altitude of 700 meters, Kalliani spreads on a panoramic position above Stymfalia Lake within a fantastic landscape with lush vegetation. It is worth visiting Economopoulos Mansion for its impressive architecture and the monastery of Agia Paraskevi. What is so special about Kalliani is the dairy products’ factory that distinguishes for its exquisite products. Note one of our favorite mysteries for Kalliani; enjoy a beautiful hike to the monastery of Agia Paraskevi hidden in the ravine!

Karya is a mountainous village located on the northern slopes of Ziria. Built at an altitude of 1.300 meters, this quaint village, which is one of the most mountainous villages of Corinthia, enjoys the serene atmosphere of nature full of walnut, pine and juniper trees. The most important monument of the village is the Byzantine church of the Assumption, a wonderful basilica with great relicious and historical importance that was constructed in the 13th century. It is worth mentioning Karya is the hometown of famous Greek poet Kostas Karyotakis. Surrounded from a verdant pine forest with views on the highest peaks of Ziria, Karya is an excellent starting point for exploring the sights of mountainous Corinthia.

Kastania is a mountainous villages located on the slopes of Kyllini Mountain. Built at an altitude of 1.100 meters, this charming settlement owes its name to the chestnut forest that used to exist on this location. It’s a picturesque village that will blow your mind from its impressive natural beauty. Traditional stone houses and verdant vegetation create magical inages for the eyes of the travellers. The traditional source of Kalos welcomes you at the entrance of the village and the statue of Georgios Nikas chieftain along with the wonderful church of the Assumption.

Kefalari is a mountainous village located on the northern side of Stymfalia Lake. Nestling at an altitude of 850 meters, Kefalari is one of the most unknown villages of Mountainous Corinthia and it has been characterized as a preserved traditional settlement from the Ministry of Culture. Although it might be unfamiliar to many, Kefalari is famous to those who love the beauty of nature, tranquility and tradition. At the center of the village, travellers will have the opportunity to relax at the central cobblestone square under the shade of a perennial plane tree of 130 years old. A little further down the road, it is worth visiting the stone fountain with its crystalline waters to quench your thirst with frozen water from the mountains. Whether you love hiking or not, it is highly advisable to follow two environmental trails, the one that leads of the Cave of Megali Spilia and the other that leads to the Plateau and Peak of Mikri Ziria. It’s quite an experience to enjoy this activity, as you will be able to admire the unique beauty of Flambouritsa Canyon and Hermes Cave. However, off road aficionados can follow the spectacular dirt road that connects Kefalari with Manna and Trikala, an exceptional ride!

Kesari is a mountainous village located on the central part of Mountainous Corinthia. This charming settlement is famous for its alpine climate and the high quality of products. Travellers will have the opportunity to enjoy a hot Greek coffee on the cobblestone square of the village under an old plane tree and breath fresh air! Before leaving, travellers should visit the Monastery of Panagia, which is situated in a peaceful location on the east side of the village.

Lafka is a mountainous village located on the central part of Mountainous Corinthia. Leaving behind the lake of Stymfalia, the landscape becomes even more spectacular; fir trees touch the bright white clouds of the sky and the green horizon stretches on the backdrop while the misty atmosphere makes it an even more evocative experience of driving in this natural corridor. Nestled among Olygirtos, Skiathi and Gerontio Mountains, Lafka village is barely visible from the main road because of the red tiles that break the evergreen scenery. Charming houses emerge through the trees and cobblestone squares with springs still the show. It is worth visiting the church of Agios Athanasios with its impressive iconostosis made from Lycurgus, the Folklore Museum of the village with excellent samples of folklore art and the imposing monument of the warriors made from the local sculptor Fanis Sakelario. Lovers of hiking can follow a wonderful path that leads to the chapel of Agias Sotiros with its crystal sources and its panoramic views. Lafka is also an ideal starting point for journeys to the mountain range of Mavri Korfi, Oligyro and Mavrovouni through a forest road suitable for any car!

Panorama is a mountain village located on the region of Feneos. Nestling at an altitude of 1000 meters, Panorama is charming settlement with spectacular views to the valley of Feneos.Off road aficionados can follow one of the most intriguing routes that starts from Panorama village towards the spectacular region of Diaselo Kynigou with its difficult and narrow passages leading to verdant Planitero with the beautiful river of Aroanios! In this route, you will fell total isolation from the world. Keep in mind that Panorama is famous for its delicious taverns!

Steno is mountainous village located on the western slopes of Ziria Mount. Lying at an altitude of 840 meters, Steno has a picturesque character with stone houses, narrow alleys and a cobblestone square with an old plane tree. It is worth making a stop at this village in order to drink water from a fountain that flows through the tree! If you follow the asphalt road going north, you will enjoy a spectacular road through the forest!

Stymfalia is a semi-mountainous village located on the northern side of Stymfalia Lake. Built within a beautiful natural setting, surrounded from springs with crystal waters, Stymfalia is an ideal destination for those who are looking for tranquility and relaxation. Hiking lovers should be aware that two interesting environmental paths that pass through magnificent sceneries worth exploring.

Trikala villages are three of the most famous mountain villages of Peloponnese located on the prefecture of Corinthia. Nestled on the northeastern slopes of Ziria Mountain, at an altitude of 1000 meters, the neighborhoods of Ano, Mesa and Kato Trikala is a favorite weekend escape of the Athenians. Plane, oak, walnut and chestnut trees form the colourful puzzle of this corner of Greece. According to the book of the Patriarch of Jerusalum Chrysanthos Notaras, the three villages of Trikala distinguish for their abundance of water, their fresh air and their wine since 1716; certainly, the three neighborhoods of Trikala of Corinthia are one of the most popular mountain escapes of the Peloponnese peninsula that even visitors in ancient times came to enjoy their wonderful climate by seeking remedy to the gods’ sanctuaries. First off, travellers should visit the Monastery of Agios Vlasios because of the holy icon found in a nearby cave who contributed significantly to the liberation struggle against the Ottomans. In terms of religious monuments, the Church of Agios Dimitrios in Kato Trikala that distinguishes for its amazing frescoes with expressionist features and vibrant colours as well as the Temple of the Transfriguration with the excellent icon of Saint John the Baptist and the Monastery of Virgin Mary with its exceptional murals dating from the 18th century. In Ano Trikala, it is a must to visit the Mansion of Notareas noble and powerful family, one of the oldest houses of Corinthia, who settled here in the 16th century and played an important role during the Ottoman occupation and the Civil War. Do not opt out to visit the Cobblestone Square Of Kato Trikala with the perennial plane trees where you can enjoy a hot cup of coffee.

Sunset Spots

Spot: Village of Ano Trikala, Central Corinthia

Spot: Town of Xylokastro, Seaside Corinthia

Spot: Town of Loutraki, Seaside Corinthia

Spot: Megalavi Lighthouse, Southwest Destination

Spot: Village of Melissi, Seaside Corinthia

Excursions

Road Trip: The Villages of Mountainous Arcadia one of the most popular destinations of the Peloponnese. On the mythical land of God Pan, in mountainous Arcadia that distinguishes for its natural beauty and its austere hospitality, the peninsula of Peloponnese invites you to explore picturesque villages that have been surrendered in the arms of Mainalo since the ancient times. From the cobblestone alleys of Dimitsana, the stone mansions of Stemnitsa and the impregneable castle of Karytaina to the sounds of Lousios River, the verdant forest sceneries of Mainalo Mountain and the impressive stalactites of Kapsia Cave, it is definite that mountainous Arcadia will charm you instantly. Stone mansions, Byzantine churches and cobblestone streets adorn some of the most beautiful and well-preserved mountain villages of Arcadia, with their unique architecture, their impressive monasteries and their atmospheric guesthouses. Dimitsana and Stemnitsa will travel you to another bygone era, where, no one knows how, they have managed to retain their authenticity and genuiness. Among the green forests on the mountain slopes of Mainalon, travellers will find a one-of-kind opportunity to explore the true beauty of mountainous Peloponnese. Arcadia has long been one of the most famous winter destinations of Greece for alternative activities, romantic weekends, family trips and naturalist excursions to Lousios. Historym architecture and nature blend in a very mysterious way on this corner of the country, creating one of the most beautiful sceneries of Greece.

Road Trip: The Town of Kalavryta is filled with millions of images. Historical monasteries and charming villages, snowy slopes filled with skiers and rough dirt roads for courageous explorers, craggy ravines and verdant fir forests for tireless walkers; Chelmos, the most imposing mountain of Peloponnese, promises unforgettable experiences. From its rugged hills, the landscapes dramatically transform from the azure waters of the Corinthian Gulf to the foaming waters of Vouraikos and the imperious fir trees. Lovely and picturesque Kalavryta, notoriously known for its spectacular train journey and its astonishing snowy slopes, will hypnotize you with its mysteries.

Activities

Bicycling: The countryside of mountainous Corinthia is an ideal place for cycling lovers. There are numerous bicycle rentals on the villages of Trikala where you can rent a bicycle and discover the hidden beauties of mountainous Corinthia.

Bird Watching: The flora and fauna of mountainous Corinthia is quite remarkable. The prefecture of Corinthia has a high ecological value, as it serves as major station and shelter for native and migratory birds. Particularly at Ziria Mountain and Stymfalia Lake, one will have the opportunity to encounter numerous bird species including rock partridges, ferruginous ducks and little bitterns. Find out more information from the Hellenic Ornithological Society!

Hiking: Ziria Mountain is an ideal destination for nature lovers since hundreds of scenic trails begin from almost all the villages of Mountainous Corinthia. Hiking lovers will have the opportunity to access an extensive network of sign posted paths that connect the villages, forests and caves with the peaks of Ziria. We suggest one of the most interesting paths that start from the road Stymfalia-Kastania towards the location of the Mycenaean Castle where the view to the lake and the archaeological site of Stymfalos is amazing. Quite beautiful are also the trails in the region of Dassiou Lake, especially the one that leads to Karya village. The route that transverses the valley of Ziria towards Goura village is definitely a must since it crosses the Black Forest; make sure to have your camera with you! One of the most challenging routes is considered to be the ascend to Psili Korfi, the highest top of Mountainous Corinthia, which reaches 2,376 meters. If you insist on attempting this conquest, you should start from Kefalari towards Prophet Elias, passes from the peak of Mikri Xiria at 2,089 meters and reaches Hermes Cave and the mountain refugee. The star, however, of all the hiking trails starts from Agios Vlasios Monastery at Ano Trikala following the ascend route to Ziria plateau. Upon reaching Varnevo position, with its huge asphalt hairpin, you will follow this path that leads to Ziria plateau (Tip: In order to identify this position, make sure to find the kiosk). From this point, starts the sign-posted path that leads to Flabouritsa Canyon with its dense fir forest; three hours hiking and you will reach the trail that ascends on the northwest side of Ziria Mountain. Find out more from Official Website of Ziria Mountain!

Horse Riding: Lovers of horse riding can enjoy invigorating experiences for galloping a horse in the village of Rethi. The Horse Riding Center of Rethi offers an ever-growing set of activities with the aim to entertain the excursionists! Skilled attendants and instructors will introduce to youthe secrets and the joys of riding.

Mountain Biking: The rich natural diversity of mountainous Corinthia is highly suitable for mountain and road biking. Exciting trails from rural roads to specially designed cycling routes are available in various parts of Corinthia. One of the most beautiful routes starts from the Ziria Sports Centre and leads to Lake Dasiou, a route with a total length of 4.5 kilometers.

Off Road: Lovers of off road driving can follow the dirt roads leading to the mountains of Ziria in order to explore the mysterious beauties of mountainous Corinthia. If you have a 4X4 vehicle, and you don’t mind getting a little dirty, you should follow the route towards Zarouchla village, Tsivlou Lake, Kalavryta Ski Center and, of course, the Helmos Observatory, one of the largest observatories of Europe, where you can count on the stars by yourself! Another interesting adventure for a 4×4 experience runs from Kiato towards the plateau of Stymfalia.
As for avid travelers, it is a must to head west from Mesino village and cross the plain of Feneos following the signs towards Ancient Feneos. One and a half kilometer later, drivers will find artificial Doxa Lake with its picturesque church of Agios Fanourios. The round of the lake has some dirt roads, but, if the weather conditions are favorable, it is accessible. A must of you are visiting mountainous Corinthia! Another interesting route starts from Kiato towards the valley of Stymfalia, while the one from Skafidia Plateau to Goura village through the fir forest of Mavros Loggos is equally intriguing.

Skiing: Mountainous Corinthia is an ideal destination for skiing enthusiasts. The Sports Center of Ziria is located on the northwestern side of Killini Mountain, in the plateau between its two mountaintops. The center is located where Little Ziria (2.080 m) and Great Ziria (2.374 m) are separated from Flabouritsa ravine, only 10 kilometers away from Ano Trikala. It is a place for fun and action and has parking for almost 200 vehicles. The Ziria Athletic Center has a ski slope with a baby lift 100m high and also a 450 m sliding lift. The personnel are helpful and ready to assist visitors, while equipment, boots, skis and security equipment are also available. Furthermore, ski lessons are given and there is the possibility of night skiing and skiing endurance, while the center is also suitable for the little visitors and their sleds. The space is decorated with a beautiful chalet at the base of the 500m long ski slope, where you can enjoy a hot beverage and various snacks. Apart from skiing, there are also more activities available, like renting a snowmobile or an ATV, and exploration starting from the small plateau.The morphology of the area is suitable even for beginners. Lake Dasio and Hermes Cave Next are right next door, where mythology has it that the restless god was born there. Two mountain shelters, on the east and west of the plateau, offer accommodation to the visitors after placing a reservation. We should also mention that the area is located within the boundaries of Killini, which belongs to the Natura 2000 network. You can choose from a great variety of lodgings, like hotels, pensions and rooms to let, all located in the area. Climbing up Ziria (Killini) the sheer natural beauty and the view of the Corinthian Gulf and the opposite “Roumeli” (Central Greece) will charm you for sure. So, put on your skis and here we go! (Source: Mythicalpeloponnese.com )

Coffee Corners, Gastronomic Delights and Cocktail Inspirations

Coffee Corners 

Alfavitari: Coffee & Pastries, Kato Trikala

Kafe Asimina: Coffee & Pastries, Karya

Platanos: Pastries, Kastania

Tzini: Coffee & Pastries, Mesea Trikala

Gastronomic Delights

Agnanti: Greek Cuisine, Mesea Trikala

Kati Kalytero: Greek Cuisine, Goura

Klimataria: Greek Cuisine, Goura

Koutouki Tou Staikou: Grill & Meat, Feneos

Louiza: Greek Cuisine, Panorama

Opos Palia: Greek Cuisine, Mesea Trikala

Orexion: Greek Cuisine, Lafka

Orizontes: Greek Cuisine, Ano Trikala

Pizza Ala Horiata: Italian Cuisine, Mesea Trikala

Relias: Grill & Meat, Goura

Stou Dekleri: Greek Cuisine, Ano Trikala

To Hani Tou Hania: Greek Cuisine, Ano Trikala

To Steki: Greek Cuisine, Kastania

Trikrina: Greek Cuisine, Mesino

Το Arhontiko Tis Zaholis: Grill & Meat, Evrostini

Cocktail Inspirations

Lithino: Cocktails and Drinks, Mesea Trikala

Tzini: Cocktails and Drinks, Mesea Trikala

Rodon: Cocktails and Drinks, Mesea Trikala

Local Products & Specialties

The local products of Corinthia include a series of agricultural products such as honey, raisins, homemade pasta, wine and sweet spoons. The nuts and vegetables of Corinthia prefecture are also of great quality.

The local specialties of Corinthia include boubouli, a dish with braised lamb with noodles in the pot, lamb or kid on the spit with potatoes, grilled chops and kokoretsi, a dish made with the intestines of lambs.

Events & Festivals

Every four years, the Nemean Games take place in Nemea. In 2016, the Nemea Games will take place from 10 to 12 June.

Every summer, the Cultural Festival of Xylokastro takes place in the region of Corinthia. The festival features a series of events from July to August.

Every August, the Tomato Festival takes place in the village of Velina. The festival is usually held during the last days of August.

History & Mythology

Mythology

According to mythology, the first home of the Titans was the citadel of Titani in Sicyon, on the banks of the river Asopos. There, humans and gods gathered after the end of the war between the Olympian gods and the Titans, to distribute the goods of the world. Prometheus, who liked humans, managed to fool the Gods into accepting bones offered on the altars as sacrifice. With that trick he managed to steal the fire from the gods, which he in turn delivered to the humans. For this he was punished by the gods, chained to a rock in the Caucasus, visited every day by an eagle that ate his liver. His liver would regenerate in the evening, and the eagle would eat it again the next day. So was Prometheus punished with eternal torment. Another myth related to Corinthia is the story with the lion of Nemea. The Nemea region has remained famous, as Hercules carried out one of his 12 labors. Following the orders of King Eurystheus, Hercules went to Nemea to kill the fearsome lion that had been terrorizing local residents. Discovering that the animal’s nest had two entrances, he trapped the lion by blocking the one. He cracked it on the head with his club, and then strangled the stunned animal with his own hands. He skinned it and from the pelt fashioned himself a tough coat, which he wore for protection from then on. Another Herculean Labor that took place in the district, in addition to the Lion of Nemea, is that of the ‘Stymfalides Ornithes’ aka the birds of Stymfalia. According to legend, in the homonymous lake big birds with sharp beaks and bronze claws were nesting, destroying the crops of farmers, eating their livestock and terrorizing the local residents. Hercules startled the birds with the sound of brass rattles built by the god Hephaestus, and given to him by the goddess Athena. When the startled birds took off flying, Hercules killed them with arrows dipped in the poisonous blood of the mythical monster, the Lernaia Hydra. (Source: Wondergreece.gr )

History

Archaeological excavations show that the region of Feneos was first inhabited from the Pelasgians in 3000 BC. During the 10th century BC, the Achaeans founded the city of Feneos mentioned in the Homeric epics. In the classical and Hellenistic times, ancient Feneos was a thriving city before it was completely destroyed from the Romans. The inhabitants of Feneos villages offered their services to the Greek state both during the Ottoman period and the German occupation. However, the most ancient settleemnt of Kyllini (Ziria) is the settleemnt of Trikala. In ancient times, Kyllini belonged to the prefecture of Arcadia, and it was the largest mountain of Arcadia. (Historical Data Inadequate)

Travel & Transport

By Bus: KTEL Buses operate routes from the Kiffisos Station in the city of Athens to the towns of Nemea and Xylokastro on a daily basis. The journey usually lasts two to three hours.

By Car (150 kilometers): Access to the villages of mountainous Corinthia is avaible from the National Road Athens – Patra until the exit of Xylokastro/Trikala. The journey usually takes one and a half to two hours.

Mysterious Greece Tips

A Journey around the 3 Lakes of Corinthia

The spectacular landscapes of Mountainous Corinthia create an authentic mountain destination that deserves your attention; forests with juniper, fir and black pine trees, flowing rivers and cosmic plateaus shadowed from impressive Ziria Mountains will surely take your breath away. On the banks of the mythical legends of Stymfalia Lake, in an ancient place famous for thousands of years, where Hercules made his sixth labor relieving people from terrible Stymfalia hens that ravaged the area, travellers will have the opportunity to explore the genuine spirit of Greek mainland at its finest that has been characterized as a protected area of the European Network of NATURA 2000. Heading towards the saddle of Kastania, with spectacular views to the valley of Feneos and its quaint villages, travellers will be amazed from this tiny valley that is surrounded from the high mountains. Famous for its sinkholes that swallow the river waters, Feneos Valley was conquered from gods, heroes and travellers since the very ancient times. Its interesting landscape is complemented with the artificial Doxa Lake with its turquoise waters and its verdant shores; it is a magical natural monument that will instantly take your breath away. Continuing the natural explorations in mountainous Corinthia, travellers deserve to discover the tiny Dasiou Lake, the most unknown lake of Morias, where they will have to climb in the highlands of Ziria Mountain. Nature lovers or not, it is definite that a journey around the three lakes of mountainous Corinthia will offer you unforgettable moments in the Greek countryside.

An Interesting Initiative: Corinthia’s Culture Paths

In 2014, an interesting initiative was completed regarding the signaling of the Paths of Culture! ELLINIKI ETAIRIA – Society for the Environment and Cultural Heritage, in cooperation with the Municipality of Sikyonia / Local community of Psari and the Cultural Association of Psari, has undertaken the implementation of the project “Paths of Culture” with the selection and signposting of a series of routes offering the visitor the opportunity to discover and protect the beautiful mountainous agricultural land, with its virgin nature and historical vineyards. Find out more information from the Official Website of Culture Trails!

Α Wonderful Hike to the Monastery of Agia Paraskevi

Kalliani is a mountainous village located on the northwest side of Ziria Mountain. Built at an altitude of 700 meters, Kalliani spreads on a panoramic position above Stymfalia Lake within a fantastic landscape with lush vegetation. It is worth visiting Economopoulos Mansion for its impressive architecture and the monastery of Agia Paraskevi. What is so special about Kalliani is the dairy products’ factory that distinguishes for its exquisite products. Note one of our favorite mystery for Kalliani; enjoy a beautiful hike to the monastery of Agia Paraskevi hidden in the ravine!

Discover the Mystery of Vivian

“…All children love mysteries and so did we! When I was a kid, we heard various stories for the glorious and abandoned hotel Theoxenia in Ano Trikala; so, we decided to enter it and discover its mysteries! If you dare, visit this mysterious place to discover its mysteries by yourself…” Explore mountainous Corinthia from Vivian’s point of view!

Driving Explorations

(1) The driving route from Lafka and Kastania towards the village of Mesino and Goura is considered one of the most beautiful driving routes of Mountainous Corinthia. Nestled between the three massive mountains, Lafka village is barely visible from the distance. Red tiled roofs emerge that outbreak the sequence of the abundant verdant sceneries; a wonderful stop to admire the views of Mountainous Corithia. Built amphitheatrically on Ziria Mountain, Kastania, which literally translates to chestnuts, distinguishes for its picturesqueness surrounded from dense vegetation of fir, cedar and walnut trees. It’s a tiny quaint village favored from nature lovers due to its excellent climate conditions. As the road descends to the plain of Feneos, the asphalt river flows in quaint Mesino; a tiny village built around the cobblestone square with a perennial plane tree, the trunk of which gushes running water.Travellers should definitely grab a place in the traditional café in the square and visit the interesting folklore museum and the archaeological collection of Mesino. From these villages, of the most particular interest is the village of Goura with its traditional buildings, its beautiful stone buildings of the 19th century and the imposing church of Taxiarhes (1880) on the cobblestone square. In fact, the mansion of Economou-Goura, one of the chieftains of the Greek revotion of 1821, along with the mansions of Sarli and Mourti have been described as historical preserved monuments. If you visit Goura, make sure to taste the exceptional food specialties at the traditional taverns. (2) Another interesting driving route starts from the seaside village of Kiato towards the valley of Stymfalia through the villages of Velina, Klimenti, Kesari, Kefalari and Kalliani. This route offers spectacular natural sceneries with panoramic views to the valley. Lovers of adventure can also visit Mesino village that continues into a verdant route full of fir and chestnut trees surrounded from the massive slopes of Oligyrto and Ziria Mountain! (3) It is also worth following the route towards Tarsos and Feneos. Following the crossroads of Sarantopihos, you will enter into one of the most amazing parts of the route with a dense forest of towering pines and firs! In this location, nature is pristine providing shelter to partridges, foxes, rabbits, wildcats, ferrets and jackets. Asian lilies spring in the countryside along with wild roses! (4) The route from Psari to Kalliani is also breathtaking; it passes through a fascinating route that crisses the valley through a wonderful landscape.

Escape to the Village of Zarouchla

A dirt road for ve­hi­cles with high road-clearance such as a 4-wheel drive is available to reach Zarouchla from Feneos (15 kilometers)! You should be alerted that there is snow in the win­ter and the road gets mud­dy when raining. In fair weath­er con­di­tions though, you will en­joy a won­der­ful route through dense for­est with tall firs, also ideal for hiking lovers! Zarouchla is one of the most picturesque villages of the Peloponnese peninsula! It is worth visiting it for its wonderful landscapes, its traditional character, its magnificent forests and its interesting promenades! Above all, Zarouchla is a place for adventure! Whether you are lovers of off road driving or mountain bike aficionados, the untouched hamlets within the mountains amidst the verdant pine and fir forests will take your breath away! Further away, you can also visit Tsivlou Lake. Find out more information from Zarouchla Official Website!

Explore the Gorge of Fonissa

One of the most interesting hiking paths of Coirnthia leads to Fonissa Gorge in Korfiotissa, located between villages Kamari and Loutro. It is one of the most challenging hiking trails in Greece that passes from majestic waterfalls and impressive caves ideal for lovers of explorations!

From Mountainous Corinthia With Love

Raisins are a historic traditional product of the Greek economy, having a strong presence and involved in various social activities. According to historians, the raisins accompany mankind since the dawn of civilization. It is said that the raisins were discovered accidentally when people tried out of curiosity the dried grapes in the vineyards. Among the best varieties were the dark currants cultivated in Ancient Greece. The cultivation of raisin contributed decisively in the development and support of the Greek economy and society, while its cultivation developed rapidly when Greece became an independent state in 1821, after the liberation from the Ottoman occupation. The rapid increase of the production during the 19th century can be mainly attributed to calamity of phylloxera, which destroyed the French vineyards. The Corinthian Raisin was the main export product of the newly established Greek state in 1830 until the second half of the 19th century while it constituted 75% of total exports, thus marking it the national product that was cultivated almost exclusively in the Greek region.

Horses & Ponies

If you are a horse riding lover, you should visit the center of horse riding in the village of Rethi where you can enjoy lovely rides with horses and ponies inside and outside the ranch!

Must Visit: Acrocorinth Castle

Undeniably, the castle of Acrocorinth is a must visit! It was the biggest castle in Moreas and the watching eye of the entire Peloponnese. According to archaeological excavations, the castle was created during the reign of Sisyphus, the mythical king of Corinth, and its first fortification took place in the late 7th- early 6th century, during the Kypselid Tyranny. After a long history of different occupations by different conquerors –Romans, Franks, Venetians, Turks – the castle finally returned to Greek hands in 1823 with the liberation of Corinth. Fortification works from every period, the Mycenaean, the Classical, the Byzantine and the Medieval can be seen on Acrocorith due to the Turkish and Venetian occupation. The most intriguing part, however, is the breathtaking view; in front of your eyes, you will catch a bird’s eye view of the entire Corinthian Land, until the borders of Argolis, over the Geraneia Mountains and until the beginning of Achaia, and Central Greece

Myths & Legends of Hermes

According to mythology, Homer couldn’t opt out the divine mountain from his anthem to Hermes. Kyllini Mountain is closely tied to the history of Hermes who was also worshipped in the region of Evrostini. The birthplace of Hermes was the renowned Cave of Hermes; one of the few caves in Greece located in such a high altitude. It comprises from magnificent chambers decorated with impressive stalactites and stalagmites formations and tiny ponds with crystalline waters. The first night of his birth, Hermes escaped to Thessaly, where he stole the cattle of Apollo. Upon reaching the next morning in Kyllini, he wanted to tour the surrounding area; so, he arrived at the neighboring mount over the current region of Evrostini. There he discovered a turtle.Using the shell and nerves from an ox, he made one lyre, the first musical instrument built in the world according to the legend.

Observing Like An Olympian God

One of the our favorite spots for observing the views like an Olympian god is the tiny stone chapel of Agios Nikolaos in Asprokambos village that overlooks the Nemean vineyards. What’s more, the Kastania Col also offers a bird’s eye view towards the valley of Feneos and its charming villages. At last but not least, Fokas Fortress also provides a wonderful view of western and eastern Corinthia!

Off Road Experiences

Lovers of off road driving can follow the dirt roads leading to the mountains of Ziria in order to explore the mysterious beauties of mountainous Corinthia. If you have a 4X4 vehicle, and you don’t mind getting a little dirty, you should follow the route towards Zarouchla village, Tsivlou Lake, Kalavryta Ski Center and, of course, the Helmos Observatory, one of the largest observatories of Europe, where you can count on the stars by yourself! Another interesting adventure for a 4×4 experience runs from Kiato towards the plateau of Stymfalia. Find out more information from Ziria Official Website!

One of A Kind: Stymfalia’s Environmental Museum

The Environment Museum of Stymfalia, whose aim is to show the interdependence of mankind and Nature, focuses on their harmonious coexistence in the Stymfalia basin.Its objective is to raise the public’s ecological awareness and preserve the knowledge of the region’s traditional technology.The museum is located on the slope of one of the verdant hills surrounding Lake Stymfalia where, according to mythology, Hercules confronted and slew the Stymphalian birds. The first module of the Environment Museum of Stymfalia provides information on the region’s environment and its importance. Stymfalia belongs to the European Network of Protected Areas NATURA 2000. Lake Stymfalia and Mount Zireia are of great ecological value. They communicate through underground, as well as visible water routes, defining the aquatic basin of Stymfalia, the largest mountain lake of the Peloponnese. It also constitutes the southernmost mountain wetland of the Balkans, with rich flora and fauna. In the Museum’s interior you have access to what, in Greece, is a unique exhibit: an open aquarium representing a cross-section of the lake, with live fish and plants of the region! Lastly, the Multipurpose Hall is used to host temporary exhibitions, organize events and develop cultural activities. Don’t miss a visit to the museum!

Picnic Time at Dassiou Lake

Create your own basket with beverages and snacks and go for a pleasant and sunny at the kiosks of Varnevo and Dasiou Lake.

Sweet Rose from Agios Georgios Feneos Monastery

From the balcony of the monastery, visitors can enjoy panoramic views of the alpine scenery of Lake Doxa while also taste the traditional sweet rose made with extreme care in the monastery.

Visit the Impressive Corinth Canal

No trip is complete without visiting the impressive Isthmus – a challenging engineering dream that took 2,300 years to be realized – which you can cross by taking a round-trip boat tour from Loutraki! The famous Corinth Canal connects the Gulf of Corinth with the Saronic Gulf in the Aegean Sea. It cuts through the narrow Isthmus of Corinth and separates the Peloponnesian peninsula from the Greek mainland, thus effectively making the former an island. The canal is 6.4 kilometers in length and only 21.3 meters wide at its base. Earth cliffs flanking either side of the canal reach a maximum height of 63 meters. Aside from a few modest sized cruise ships, the Corinth Canal is unserviceable to most modern ships.

The Story Behind the Corinth Canal

The Corinth Canal, though only completed in the late 19th century, was an idea and dream that dates back over 2000 thousand years. Before it was built, ships sailing between the Aegean and Adriatic had to circumnavigate the Peloponnese adding about 185 nautical miles to their journey. The first to decide to dig the Corinth Canal was Periander, the tyrant of Corinth (602 BCE). Such a giant project was above the technical capabilities of ancient times so Periander carried out another great project, the diolkós, a stone road, on which the ships were transferred on wheeled platforms from one sea to the other. Dimitrios Poliorkitis, king of Macedon (c. 300 BCE), was the second who tried, but his engineers insisted that if the seas where connected, the more northerly Adriatic, mistakenly thought to be higher, would flood the more southern Aegean. At the time, it was also thought that Poseidon, god of the sea, opposed joining the Aegean and the Adriatic. The same fear also stopped Julius Caesar and emperors Hadrian and Caligula. The most serious try was that of Emperor Nero (67 CE). He had 6,000 slaves for the job. He started the work himself, digging with a golden hoe, while music was played. However, he was killed before the work could be completed. In the modern era, the first who thought seriously to carry out the project was Capodistrias (c. 1830), first governor of Greece after the liberation from the Ottoman Turks. But the budget, estimated at 40 million French francs, was too much for the Greek state. Finally, in 1869, the Parliament authorized the Government to grant a private company (Austrian General Etiene Tyrr) the privilege to construct the Canal of Corinth. Work began on Mar 29, 1882, but Tyrr’s capital of 30 million francs proved to be insufficient. The work was restarted in 1890, by a new Greek company (Andreas Syggros), with a capital of 5 million francs. The job was finally completed and regular use of the Canal started on Oct 28, 1893. Due to the canal’s narrowness, navigational problems and periodic closures to repair landslips from its steep walls, it failed to attract the level of traffic anticipated by its operators. It is now used mainly for tourist traffic. The bridge above is perfect for bungee jumping.

Wine Experiences in Nemea

In the rolling hills southwest of Corinth, the region of Nemea region is one of the premier wine-producing areas of Greece, famous for its full-bodied reds, many produced from the local agioritiko grape. Nemea has been known for its fine wines since Mycenaean times, when nearby Phlius supplied the wine for the royal court at Mycenae. Half a dozen or so wineries provide tastings for visitors including Domaine Spiropoulos, Semeli, Lafkiotis Winery, Ktima Palivou, Domaine Helios, Gaia, Domaine Repanis, Giouli Estate, Papaioannou Winery, Wine Cooperatives of Nemea and Zacharias Vineyards.

Photo Credits

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Acrocorinth Castle: Dlalcyon by Flickr

Agios Georgios Monastery: Mysteriousgreece

Ancient Corinth: Shutterstock

Ancient Nemea: Edoardo Forneris by Flickr

Ancient Stymfalos: Andreas S. by Panoramio

Barren Landscape: Mysteriousgreece

Church of Agios Fanourios: Mysteriousgreece

Dirt Road towards Doxa Lake: Mysteriousgreece

Doxa Lake: Mysteriousgreece

Feneos Valley II: Mysteriousgreece

Feneos Valley: Mysteriousgreece

Fir Forest: Ridewithgps.com

Flambouritsa Valley: Flampouritsa.gr

Fonissa Canyon: KGP74 by Flickr

Lake Doxa: Alexis Vazaios by Flickr

Lake Doxa: Mysteriousgreece

Lighthouse of Megalavi: Mary Palaiologou by Panoramio

Mountain Beauty: Mysteriousgreece

Mountain Shelter: Flampouritsa.gr

Panorama Village: Grussos by Panoramio

Road on Corinthia: Mysteriousgreece

Spring Colours in Doxa: Mysteriousgreece

Stymfalia Lake: Vasos Mp by Flickr

Sunset from Loutraki: MANOS by Panoramio

Sunset from Melissi: Greekdreaming.com

Trees: Mysteriousgreece

Trikala: George Rallis by Flickr

View of Trikala: Mysteriousgreece

View of Ziria: Flampouritsa.gr

Virgin of the Rocks:Mysteriousgreece

Ziria Mountain: Mysteriousgreece

Ziria: Thetropicaldog.com