A Mountainous Charm
This tree-shaded village, retaining its traditional character, dots the mountain side below Katara Col in the Mountain Range of Pindos. Metsovo is full of life throughout the year generously offering you its natural surrounding beauties. Particularly during winter, the famous vlach village, birthplace of various national benefactors (Tositsas, Stournaras, Averof etc.), is Epirus’ beloved tourist destination.
Half hidden in the fog or wrapped in a snow blanket as winter sets in; Metsovo practically looks like a painting. Enjoy this marvelous inviting village and:
- see art and culture introducing you to an ongoing tradition.
- tour this gray stone village with red tile roofs and its green surrounding.
- admire the two storey mansions, with their traditionally constructed balconies (hayat) and wooden doors.
- quench your thirst at one out of many stone-built drinking fountains and savour famous local dishes.
- revive your senses by hiking in the mountains and crossing the rivers.
Appreciate Metsovo’s elegance in a walk
The settlement’s heart beats in the central square; the most famous one in mountainous Greece. Head up to Metsovo’s church of Agia Paraskevi (15th century) with its elaborate wood-carved temple and priceless holy heirlooms. Around the yard you’ll see a distinctive image of Metsovo: the elders, with their handlebar moustaches, usually sit on the benches in traditional costumes and wooden crooks chatting in Vlach, enjoying the first daylight.
At a short distance ahead visit the Tositsa mansion, which houses the Folk Art Museum along with Metsovo’s folk 18th century history. Make a stop to the Averoff Museum of Neohellenic Art, where paintings and sculptures by renowned Greek Artists are exhibited. Take a short break at the village’s recreational hill where in 1668 a Castle was erected and then destroyed together with the whole village in 1858. Pay a visit to the Averofeios Garden where you will encounter endemic tree species of Pindos; this is a true oasis and it will give you the chance to breath in the mountainous fresh air, while you relax on a bench behind the chapel of Agios Georgios.
Follow down the cobblestone alleys to the very first neighborhood dating back to 1008, where you will come across two monasteries built by the banks of Metsovitis River; the Monastery of Panagia with its renovated watermill Gkina and the Monastery of Agios Nicholaos with its 17th century wall paintings.
A taste of local gastronomy
You’ll realise how important food is for Metsovo at a first glance, or may we say at a “first smell”!!! The tavernas in the village’s square are set early on, with their spits roasting all sorts of meats. Enjoy 'epic' feasts; kontosouvli in parchment paper, delicious sausages and “loads” of pies! This is where you’ll find stores selling the region’s dairy products, of which metsovone and metsovela cheeses stand out. Pass by the Tositsa Dairy Foundation, train your tastebuds, learn and purchase excellent dairy products. Finally, don’t miss the Averoff Winery Katogi; a place of great interest as you can find its bottled wine, Katogi, one of the most renowned in the country.
On the outskirts...
The forested mountains, three rivers and an artificial lake guarantee a stimulating holiday! If you are in search of an active vacation, the area is ideal for hiking on its marked trails, climbing, mountainbiking, off-road jeep adventuring, kayaking, rafting and of course skiing on the ski centers’ slopes at "Karakoli", "Prophet Elias" and "Zygos". On the opposite side of Metsovo (6 km) is Anilio Village holding a long tradition in wood processing (anilio: means no sun, which derives from the fact that the sun sees the village for a short period during the day). Anthochori Village, which is crossed by Rona Stream, is located 13km southwest of Metsovo. Visit its restored water mills that have now become a Museum of Ηydrokinetics. Don’t miss a tour by the artificial lake of Aoos River Springs, where you’ll get the chance to shoot breathtaking pictures, especially during sunset, of islets covered with fir trees and amazing little fjords.
Off we go...
Metsovo is located 415km from Athens (via Trikala) and 490 km (via Ioannina). From Thessaloniki it’s only a 250 km drive. If distances seem too big, you can also book a flight to Ioannina from Athens or Thessaloniki. The distance Ioannina - Metsovo is just 55 km.