In the mountains of Epirus (III)

As you may or may not have realised, i sort of developed a huge crush on Papingo during our stay, so you can imagine i was less than happy to wake up on our last day there…

However, a hearty breakfast full of local, fresh goodness made getting out of bed significantly easier!

Besides, i didn’t know it yet but the Zagorochoria still had some pretty cool surprises in store for us.

We tried to take in the view one last time…

 and had a great last chat with our adorable host. We told him about our plans to set up something similar somewhere in the south of Greece, and he was very kind, full of great advice, and also honest about the difficulties of such a project. Their work at Astra Inn is really inspiring – we’re already looking forward to going back!

We left Papingo with a heavy heart, but it wasn’t long before we stumbled onto the first surprise of the day…

A few hundred meters down the road from Great to Little Papingo, we saw a little trail leading off into a small slit in the rocks, alongside a stream, so we decided to pull over and follow it. What waited for us, only a short walk into the rock, was an unbelievable sight! The Rogovo stream (turns out that was its name) has formed a series of about twenty natural pools into the rock, each spilling their crystal-clear water into the next one.

It turns out the Ovires, as these little natural pools are called, are a huge attraction in the summer, when people want to take a break from all the hiking by dipping into their chilled water, fresh off the mountain. You can walk along the endless flow of sparkling pools, deep into the rocks, and each of them is more amazing than the last one. We walked as far as we could go without having to step into the water, and loved it!

Then we set off to visit another very, very cool spot… Did you know that the world’s deepest canyon is in Epirus? (because we didn’t.) 1 km straight down – now that was pure thrill. Read about it here!

On the way back, we drove past gorgeous mountain-scapes, rivers, streams, pretty villages, and amazing stone bridges, and finally made it down to flat land – which, i have to admit, felt pretty boring after all that mountainous coolness. Luckily, in Greece you’re never very far away from a mountain or other….

.. so we’ve already started planning the next trip : beware, mountains of the Peloponnese – here we come!

Tell us what you think!