Oak in Greek Mythology

The oak was the dominant tree of the ancient Greek landscape. In fact the ancient Greek word for oak, 'drys', was also the word for tree. The two main commonly found in the region are the evergreen holm oak and the deciduous Valonian. Both range in size from thick low shrub (forming the basis of the modern-day Meditteranean scrub forests) to large trees. They were valued for their wood and for the autumn-ripening acorns. Tanin was also extracted from the acorn cups of the Valonian oak. This substance was a vital component employed in the tanning of leather hides. In Greek lore, the primitive, pre-agrarian tribes of Arkadia were said to have lived on a stable diet of acorns

Oak, Holm, Valonia… Also: Evergreen oak, prickly-cupped oak and ilex (alternative names for the holm) Greek : Drys { ἡ δρῦς } Species: Quercus Ilex, Quercus Ithaburensis Macrolepis and Quercus Aegilops Description: The oak was the dominant tree of the ancient Greek landscape. In fact the…

Vegetation zones in the National Parks of Pindos

Pinus nigra forest in the Ecoregion of Pindus, Greece

The Pindus Ecoregion (National Parks of Vikos-Aoos and Valia Calda) covers a wide range of elevations and habitats, from deep canyons to steep mountains. This wide range in altitude results in four major forest zones: A conifer zone, with trees such as a subspecies of…

Wildflower photos

Wild flowers of Pindos Mt. range in Greece

Greece constitutes the lower edge of the Balkan Peninsula and is characterized both by its mountainous relief and its multitude of islands. Its modern form evolved over the last 10 million years with the sinking of some parts of Aegaeis and the uplifting of others…

Foliage in the mountains of Zagori

A red crabapple leaf under the blue skies of Zagori in fall 2013

The melting of hues from green, to yellow, to burnt orange and reds begins as early as mid-October in the region of Central Zagori in Epirus. The actual process of change in the forests of Zagori begins in October and as the warm weather wanes the…

Why go trekking in Zagori Greece?

Old cobble path in the Zagori region, Northern Greece

* The diverse mosaic of forest types, the breathtaking landscapes, the more than 1000 species of plants, herbs, trees, some of them endemic to the area * You will encounter a large variety of wild animals such as the brown bear, the wolf, the…

Snow covered roofs

Snow covered church in Kato Pedina traditional stone village in the Zagori region in Greece

Snow in these parts of Greece during winter months is quite often but occasionally it may snow a bit more than normal as some pictures below may suggest. Temperatures in the Zagori region of Epirus, at the National Park of Vikos-Aoos, may drop, not…

Snow rackets

Snowshoeing in Pindus mountains in North Western Greece

Snowshoeing in the snow white treks of the National Park of Valia Calda & Vikos-Aoos in winter Greece. Get to know the other side of Greece with the assured guidance of the certified trek guide Manolis Diamantopoulos for a unique experience. A snow racket…

Pindus National Park

Flega lakes in Valia Calda, Pindus

Pindus National Park (Greek: Εθνικός Δρυμός Πίνδου Ethnikós Drymós Píndou), also known as Valia-Kalda, is a national park in mainland Greece, situated in an isolated mountainous area at the periphery of West Macedonia and Epirus, in the northeastern part of the Pindus mountain range….

Vikos Gorge

Voidomatis river running through the Gorge of Vikos in the National Park of Vikos-Aoos in Greece

The Vikos Gorge (Greek: Φαράγγι του Βίκου) is a gorge in the Pindus Mountains of northern Greece. It lies on the southern slopes of Mount Tymfi, with a length of about 20 km, depth ranging from 450 m to 1600 m and width from…

Vikos–Aoos National Park

Vikos gorge from Beloi post close to the village of Vradeto in Zagori

The Vikos–Aoös National Park (Greek: Εθνικός Δρυμός Βίκου–Αώου Ethnikós Drymós Víkou–Aóou) is a national park in the region of Epirus in northwestern Greece. The park, founded in 1973, is one of ten national parks in mainland Greece and is located 30 kilometres (19 mi)…