Friday, November 13, 2020

Damouchari-Mouresi-Kissos-Agios Ioannis (circular)


 Distance: 13,9 km

Time: 6 hours with stops

Altitude: from 18 m. (parking at Damouchari) to 539 m. (Kissos)

Total elevation gain uphill/downhill: 806 m.

Signing: red paint marks, metal signs

Drinking water on walk: yes (Damouchari,Mouresi, Mavroutsa, Kissos) 

Start/finish: Parking lot at Damouchari

Download GPS track:  from Wikiloc

    This is a suggested circular walk in East Pelion, in which we climb from Damouchari to the squares of Mouresi and Kissos, and then descend to the beach of Agios Ioannis to finally return to our starting point. Most of the walk takes place on kalderimi (cobbled stone path), but there also are sections on asphalt, earth road and earth path.


    Starting to climb from the drinking water fountain at the parking lot of Damouchari (end of asphalt road), we turn immediately left on a concrere road with a central stone-paved lane. In fifty meters we see on our right the beginning of a kalderimi and follow it, climbing sharply. It joins a stone-paved road that soon becomes earth road.  Watching out for the red marks on the left as we climb the earth road, we find again 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 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 called Tsouka. 

View from Tsouka (looking to the north)

    Back to the junction, we continue up the road-kalderimi having a line of cypress trees at the side. We cross the asphalt twice as we climb up. Third time we meet the asphalt on a sharp turn, we follow it uphill and pass by the church of Agia Paraskevi on our left. At a V-junction we take the right branch, walking now on even ground. In a little while we reach the square of Mouresi with the church of Agia Triada (Holy Trinity). This is a good place to have a stop for refreshment. 

The square of Mouresi

    Resuming our walk, we continue on the same asphalt road through the village. After about half a kilometer, watching for the red marks on our left (attention), we take a cement-paved track going uphill. Soon the paving stops and the kalderimi appears. We pass just below a small church, then cross a concrete road at an angle and finally the kalderimi opens to the main asphalt, on which we walk exiting the village.  After 150 m. watching on our right (attention) we find a downhill path-kalderimi. 


    Τhis  joins an earth road crossing apple and chestnut orchards. Reaching a kiosk, we find the continuity of the kalderimi, which later joins another earth road. After crossing a stream, we leave the earth road (which continues uphill) taking the path on the right. This takes us down to cross the large Kissotiko ravine over a modern metal bridge that lays on the old stone built bases. High  plane trees cast their shade on the large rocks scattered over the riverbed as water is running constantly, creating a magnificent scenery. 


    After crossing the stream, we climb on the other side on kalderimi, then joining an earth road. Higher up we pass by the church of Agios Konstantinos at the settlement of Mavroutsa. 

Agios Konstantinos church at Mavroutsa

     We cross the main asphalt and coninue uphill on road-kalderimi, watching for the red marks at junctions, eventually reach ing the square of Kissos at 519 m. of altitude, the highest point of our walk. At the square lies the notable main church of Agia Marina, built at 1745 AD. This is another place recommended for a stop. 

Interior of Agia Marina church 

    Now it is time to start descending towards the sea. Just below the tavern ''Klimataria'' we descend a few steps and continue on kalderimi that goes parallel to the asphalt road, passing under the parking lot. Further on we join the asphalt and walk on it downhill exiting the village.

Kissos

    At the junction with the main asphalt road we take this to the left. After 400 m. on the main road (attention), we find the kalderimi watching on our right. On our way down through the settlement of Agios Dimitrios there are sections of cement road, we pass by two water fountains and the church of  Metamorphosi, and eventually join the asphalt road, just under the large church of Agios Dimitrios. We walk on it downhill. As the asphalt takes a left turn, we take a cement road that has a central lane of kalderimi. 

Agios Dimitrios settlement

    Further down, we come to join the asphalt again. As it takes a left turn,  we take a cement road straight ahead. We come to a junction where the cement road turns right and another road heads straight (attention). Here we turn left to find the continuity of the kalderimi. Again we join the asphalt and again as it takes a left turn we find the kalderimi. We cross the asphalt three more times on our way down. The third time we descend sharply on steps, then take the cement road to the right, that opens on the left side of the river where we can cross it over a wooden pedestrial bridge. Left to the river lies the touristical settlement of Agios Ioannis. On the right lies the old church of Agios Ioannis Prodromos (St. John the Baptist), the camping and the excellent sandy beach of Papa Nero. 

Old picture of Agios Ioannis

    From the south end of Papa Nero beach we continue on path-kalderimi, which joins a narrow asphalt road and we go left. In a few minutes we come back to the parking lot at Damouchari, from where our walk had started. 

Damouchari


Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Κottes-Trikeri-Lighthouse-Agia Kyriaki (circular)

 

Shrine near Kottes

Distance: 15,5 km

Time: 5-5,5 hours (with stops)

Altitude: from 0 m. to 311 m. (Trikeri, Agia Triada church)

Total uphill/downhill gain: 625 m.

Signing: round yellow signs 

Drinking water on walk: no

Start/finish: seaside at  Kottes

Download GPS track:  from Wikiloc

  

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 This is a 5-hour circular walk around Trikeri (time including stops), starting from the seaside settlement of Kottes. Τhe best season for it is spring and autumn, due to the lack of shade. There is also an option for a shorter 3-hour walk (see below).

    From the middle of the seaside of Kottes, we follow the stone paved track going uphill. Τhe climb to Trikeri will take about an hour. Reaching the village, we climb the steps to get to the square, where we can have a stop for coffee or refreshment. We continue in a southerly direction through the village`s narrow alleys to the highest point where lies the church of Agia Triada (Holy trinity). Descending steadily in the same direction, we get to join a narrow asphalt road, and i a few meters we reach the location ''Vigla'', offering a spectacular viewpoint.

View from Vigla

    We continue on the narrow asphalt, eventually joining a wider asphalt and walk on it downhill. At the sharp left turn we continue straight ahead on an earth road. At the V-junction we go left downhill and i9n a few minutes reach the lighthouse built just above the sea at the location ''Kavoulia''. A guard  is staying there permanently.

The lighthouse at Kavoulia

    Leaving the lighthouse, we walk on a path following the coastline.

On the coastal path

    Going through the beach ''Geroplina'' (with the option of taking a swim) and through the shipyard, we come to the seaside settlement of Agia Kyriaki. 
Agia Kyriaki

    With the fish taverns on our right, we walk away from the sea on a kalderimi climbing sharply and constantly. Higher up we cross the narrow asphalt and continue straight ahead to reach the square of Trikeri and continue downhill to return to Kottes, where we can have a swim and lunch at the seaside tavernas.

On the way down to Kottes

    Now, as some people may find the idea of a 5-hour walk distressing, there is the option of a smaller, 3-hour circular walk if we skip Kottes altogether. In that case, it is best to start from Agia Kyriaki, climb the kalderimi up to Trikeri square, then descend as described via Vigla to the Lighthouse and return to Agia Kyriaki and its taverns by the coastal path. 

Trikeri square