Thursday, October 10, 2013

Damouchari-Mouresi-Tsagarada

Chalorema stream
Distance: 5,7 km
Duration: 3 h (walking time 2.20')
Altitude: from 0 m. (Damouchari) to 350 m. (max)
Signing: red marks, a few signs
Drinking water on walk: yes (Vigla of Tsangarada, Damouchari)


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        This is a nice circular walk, starting off from the seaside settlement of Damouchari in East Pelion. First we climb to Mouresi village walking on cobbled stone path (kalderimi) and then cross the overgrown ravine of Chalorema on a recently reopened path, to reach the location called Vigla at Tsagarada village and return to Damouchari, walking again on spectacular kalderimi.  At the end of our walk we can have a swim at the beach and lunch at one of the tavernas there. If we use public transport (KTEL bus), we can get off at nearby Ai Giannis (Agios Ioannis) and walk to Damouchari (a 15-minute walk from the south end of Papa Νero beach of Ai Giannis).
      Starting off from the drinking water fountain at the parking at the end of asphalt road at Damouchari, we climb to the left on a concrete road which has a central stone paved lane. After 50 m. we find the signed kalderimi climbing up, opening to a stone paved road that soon becomes an earth road. Watching out for the red marks on the left as we climb the earth road, we find the kalderimi, which was abruptly cut by the road and is not readily visible (attention). Further up, it opens to another earth road and we find it again on the left side of the road. This procedure is repeated one more time and we find ourselves walking through a virtual tunnel of vegetation around us.
A virtual tunnel of vegetation
       The kalderimi opens to a concrete road climbing steadily and we reach a junction, where it becomes again visible through the concrete. If we take here the road to the left, in five minutes we will reach an excellent viewpoint peak called Tsouka. Back to the junction, continue up the road-kalderimi having a line of cypress trees at the side. As we reach the asphalt, we do not continue straight ahead towards Mouresi square (attention), but follow the asphalt up to the left.
The overgrown Chalorema ravine
      As the asphalt takes a sharp right turn, we take the narrow concrete road to the left at the sign to ''Villa Glykas'' (ΒΙΛΑ ΓΛΥΚΑΣ) and then the earth road going straight on downhill. Just before the end of the road, watching for the red marks, we find the path on the left side. This climbs down to cross the wide Chalorema stream, and continues on the other side amongst dense vegetation. Ignoring a path to the right going to Agios Stefanos of Tsagarada, we keep following the red marks.
      The path becomes an earth road and eventually joins the downhill asphalt that comes from Agios Stefanos church. As it takes a right turn further down, we leave it to the left on a path next to a water ditch. We pass next to a beautiful old mansion and soon reach another downhill asphalt, that leads to location Vigla, a small plateau with a plane tree, a bench and a drinking water faucet. Here we join to the walk Tsagarada-Damouchari (that is coming from Agia Paraskevi church). We continue straight ahead on an earth road, reach a fork and go left to find the kalderimi next to the fence.
View to the sea from Vigla

     A little further down, we reach a wooden kiosk. On the left a small stone balcony is built, where one can sit in quiet and admire the view to the Aegean. As the kalderimi zigzags its way down, we can feel the sea breeze and hear the waves that hit the rocky coast below.
Closing in to Damouchari

     Two paths cross on the right, going towards Krifo Scholio and Fakistra beach. There is a protective low stone wall built on the outer side, because the slope is very steep. Eventually, we pass Chalorema stream over a wooden bridge.
The bridge over Chalorema stream at Damouchari
        As if to justify its name (Chalorema=destroying stream), the stream has destroyed the concrete lane on which we walk at the other side.  Here we are at the beach of Damouchari, under the ruins of the old castle, where we can have a swim into the Aegean sea.
The beach of Damouchari
       Walking on the flat stone paved lane parallel to the sealine, we pass just above the small port, the only place in the whole east Pelion area where a ship could safely dock. Some scenes of the movie ''Mamma mia'' were shot here in 2007 and there are happy pictures of the taverna owner with Meryl Streep.
Damouchari port
          A little further on, as a concrete road continues ahead, we notice the kalderimi climbing to the left. It soon opens at the end of the asphalt road, where we started our walk.

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