Enjoy Thessaly, a region of sheer beauty with mountains, rivers, beaches, the popular Plastira Lake, Tempi valley, and last but not least the unique Meteora, the most photogenic spiritual site in Greece. Archeological areas, Byzantine monasteries and churches, traditional settlements and ski resorts complete the fascinating natural beauty of Thessaly and make it a popular holiday destination. Soaring like a sleepless guardian above the city of Volos, Mt Pelion is gorgeous throughout the year. Set against an idyllic backdrop of olive groves that shimmer in the sunlight, dense forests and lush fruit orchards, these 24 stone-built villages are the true gems of Pelion.
Take the legendary “Mountzouris”, the traditional train of Pelion that connects Milies with Ano Lechona. It’s the perfect way to see part of the mountain and some other traditional villages. Visit Volos, the city of the Argonauts, where you will definitely pass by a tsipouro taverna as they are dispersed in every nook and cranny: almost 600 (!) of them bear the gastronomic stamp of the city and provide people with a favourite meeting point; that is the unrivalled landmark of Volos. Just a few kilometers to the West, lie the archaeological sites of Sesklo (the most ancient settlement of Europe, dating back to 6.000 BC) and Dimini, the most important prehistoric settlement in Greece and one of the most important ones of the New Stone Age worldwide.
Kalabaka is built on the feet of the Meteora and it is at the left side of the river Pinios at the point that it enters the plain of Thessaly.
Internationally known due to the famous Monasteries on the top of the Meteora rocks, suspended in the air.
Meteora are one of the greatest monuments of the world, protected by UNESCO, and the most important monastic center in Greece (after Agio Oros). The first ascetics came here in the 11th century. Meteora, however, flourished as a monastic center between the 13th and 14th century as many people who lived in the nearby areas embraced the monastic way of living. The ancient name of Kalabaka was Aiginion, while at the beginning of the 10th c., today's ttown is mentioned as Stagi, a name that is preserved until today as a Metropolitan title.
Kalabaka is a destination rich in history with many important monuments to visit. It is the starting point for those who wish to be familiar with the monuments and the magnificent sites of Aspropotamos, Koziakas and of course the monasteries of Meteora. The town has nice hotels, modern campings, restaurants, tavernas and shops.
It is built close to tributary of Peneus River, in an area perfect for commercial contact between the plain and mountain area (31.000 inhabitants). This is one of the reasons why it is the rural center of Thessaly products (cotton, wheat and products of cattle raising) collection and distribution.
With its two big squares, the huge park and beautiful pedestrian precincts, Karditsa gives to its visitors the opportunity to go around the city by bicycle (it has a wide network of bicycle streets) and enjoy its beauty. In 1821, the plague epidemic decimated the city population. Its revival began after the liberation from Turks in 1881. Karditsa was the first free city in Europe after the withdrawal of Italian army on March 1943 during the Second World War. Its final liberation from German army took place in September 1944.
In the region of Thessaly, a capital city lies surrounded by lush valleys, and some of the most imposing mountains in Greece. Larissa, with a population of approximately 130,000 residents, is a city where ancient history and long tradition in agriculture meet the modern way of living.
To the north and east, Kamvounia mountains, Titaros, Olympus (with the highest mountain peak in Greece reaching 2,917m.), Ossa (or Kissavos) and Mavrovouni form a natural enclave. Here the micro-climatic conditions create an ideal wild life habitat. The soil of the area is also exceptionally fertile: cotton, grains, watermelon, melon, tobacco, vegetables, wine and tsipouro are only some of this land’s agricultural products. Larissa is also the centre of the economic activity in Thessaly with an ongoing development in industry, as well as the service sector.
The Prefecture's capital is a beautiful city built on the location of ancient Trikki (according to mythology the nymph Trikki was the daughter of Pinios). Asklipios, the most important doctor of antiquity, originated from here. The Lithaios River flows through the city which is distinguished by historical Monuments, excellent urban planning, spacious squares, parks and pedestrian streets.
Volos is one of the largest and most attractive cities in Greece as well as one of the country’s most prominent ports. The modern-day city, built near the site of ancient Iolcos, dominates the region of Magnesia from its position at the foot of Mount Pelion overlooking the Pagasetic Gulf. This is one of the most beautiful areas in Thessaly, in the centre of Greece (Volos is situated 320km N of Athens and 219km S of Thessaloniki) combining the allure of the sea with the mystical charm of the Centaurs’ mountain.
When you mention Volos, Mount Pelion is the first destination that comes to mind. The mountain has relatively low levels of wilderness and elevation. Its highest summit, Stavros, is 1.624 metres, stretching for approximately 50 Km. Mount Pelion forms a natural borderline between the district of Magnesia and the Aegean Sea.
Its soft slopes and easily accessed peaks make Mount Pelion a popular destination for hiking lovers and weekend mountain climbers. Two mountain shelters, the one at Agriolefkes and the other at Agios Georgios of Zagora host weary climbers and hikers. In Agriolefkes, near Hania, there is also a skiing resort for skiing lovers, whereas an abundance of mountain routes and trails are ideal for mountain biking and horseback riding.
One gains an exhilarating experience all year round when visiting Mount Pelion or its traditional villages, whether it’s in mid-winter when everything is covered in snow, or in spring or summer when colourful wild flowers cover its slopes, which are full of fir, chestnut, oak and beech trees.