We were on the hunt for the famed waterfalls of the Agrafa Mountains — ready for anything in our way.
Okay, so that ended up including wild mushrooms and fruit plants, lush mountain slopes, a lonely but lovely mountain house and little stone paths. We were a group of travel bloggers on a trip to discover Central Greece.
Hiking the Agrafa Mountains
Our hiking in Greece excursion began on a crisp May morning after a full breakfast of locally sourced products at the Montanema Handmade Village. Our Travel Bloggers Greece group then met up with Constantinos. He was a local hiking tour guide and mountain nature lover sourced by our hosts at Montanema to tell us about the scenic slice of the Pindos Mountains that he has known since his childhood.
Hand painted signs marked the way down the mountain slope. We were in pure outdoorsy, nature-loving, hiking aficionado territory. The closest city was Karditsa (about 30 minute drive away) and even closer were a handful of small villages including Anthohori which is now home to the new five-star Montanema hotel resort village.
Located in the southernmost part of the Pindos range, the Agrafa region famously held complete autonomy during four centuries of Ottoman Turkish rule over Greece. In fact, the Greek word agrafa translates to unwritten or uncharted. The name was fitting. Since the Ottomans couldn’t conquer the mountainous area, the population darted the sultan’s tax books. They lived freely from Ottoman rule for so long.
In fact, the hiking trails around the Montanema Village were somewhat unwritten and uncharted as well. The idea for the village was planted 15 years ago when the owners were hiking and stumbled upon a little home hidden in the landscape.
Reaching the Waterfalls
They envisioned Montanema to be a part of that landscape. It opened last year as a unique accommodation that reflects the mountainous beauty of Greece. That was also how the marked hiking trails around it became a reality and how more people are now discovering the hiking possibilities around Agrafa and the outdoor activities around Lake Plastiras.
As we continued on the easy path down, the gurgling sounds of brooks and clashes of water against rocks echoed through the path. In less than an hour later we made it to the big waterfall. Its clear waters ran swiftly into a babbling brook over brown mossy rocks. The water was drinkable and refreshing.
We continued on to find a bridge and more falls. Past the bridge we came face to face with a flat, carved wall of rock that was the perfect backdrop for some photos.
There was certainly more to hike. Some of us opted to turn back. The sun glowed a bit stronger as we headed back up the slope. Still, it was a fairly easy climb with a few rest stops. We followed Constantinos to another arm of the hiking trail he knew well that led to another area of emerald green, dotted with wild mushrooms and strawberries.
Lunch at the Montanema Village
Back at the village we met up for a group lunch hosted by the Montanema Village restaurant. We passed around the strong ouzo that complemented various local dishes included local sausage, Greek beet and potato salads and my favorite discovery, a cornmeal savory pie.
We toasted to a great day. We ended our mission, our hunt for the region’s waterfalls, with new appreciation for the history of the Agrafa Mountains gaining first hand knowledge of its wild nature and fantastic local cuisine. After the hike, it was easy to understand how Greece’s breathtaking mountains inspired a one-of-a-kind eco-resort.
I’ll end with a few pics that show…
Greek Travel Blogger Hiking Fun
Chris and Mary from A Greek Adventure
Kevin and Eley from Meet Culture
Rebecca from Life Beyond Borders
Elena Sergeeva from Passion for Greece
Celeste & Marianne from Family Goes Out
Dimitrios from Photography Traveler
Where to stay: Montanema Handmade Village
Check out my review here.
Have you ever been hiking in the Pindos Mountains?