Anyone who has been interested in history of mankind will not find a better place than Greece to get a first-hand experience of it. Whether the ancient beauty of Acropolis or the First World War remains all will attract serious and not so serious student into its aura. The best way for this exploration is finding the minute details scattered through the countryside and discovering them by chance. Hiking in Greece can bring anyone different pleasure than ever imagined. The islands that have mesmerised generations by their exquisite patronage of arts, sculptures and philosophical thinking are bonuses when mixed with scenic beauty of the countryside. Before embarking on the adventure it is better to finalize the priorities so that midway one does not get rudderless. Whether it is the cultural brilliance or the ancient architecture or the more recent happenings or the landscape whichever one is interested in should be chalked out to get the locations for them.
The country is a heady culmination of all that are naturally beautiful. The rocky mountain chains which are suitable for trekking, the sandy beaches and some explored locations with deserted bright sand, the forests with herbal plants and the history famous trees the wood of which made this country a formidable naval force in medieval times and the remains of the Spartan life which commanded ancient awe. To begin it is better to find a local who is familiar with the localities and cultures. This not only eliminates complications of communication but it is also better for overnight stays. The Greek are hospitable and it is not tough to find a place for overnight stay on way to hiking in Greece.
The mountains are best for hiking and Vikos gorge is one of the most recommended places for the nature lover. For a history lover mountains around Athens with their ruins are more attractive. The gorge is at the end of a serpentine path which rises and falls many times with well made paths and trails. Be cautious about the other paths merging with the main path which can lead to any other small village nestled in the dense lap of those mountains. The altering temperatures and occasional floating clouds in rising can uplift the mood but it is better if the hike is taken in the second half of the year to avoid chances of snowing on way. Even one who is more interested in nature the journey to the beginning of the gorge can give glimpses of Ottoman styled market places in towns and highly reasonable for food. There are risks on the way and a first time hiker should be very careful on the complete journey.
Hiking to Delphi and Arachova is one of the more common and easier hiking in Greece. There are the old temples and some footpaths that are more than fifteen hundred years old. The path is clearly earmarked in maps, there are hiking supports for going on the hike, and there is an ancient tradition and supporting history of pilgrims and explorers who have gone on the same trail. There are other gorges also for hiking. The Samaria gorge is another one. It is a good four hour hike and can extend to seven hours for slow walkers or elders. The beauty if this hike is also in crossing the shallow stream and the fundamental should be followed. Always be suspicious of loose stones in streams. A chance hiker should not take this as first adventure. The rocky hillside and steep hikes can exhaust even the most experienced ones and if the muscles are not toned they can surrender in the later part of journey when the path is tougher and needs more control.
There is another hike that is attractive and the place is of much significance: Mt. Olympus. The hike is common but needs climbing and the scenery is a mixture of beauty and exploitation of it. There are transports available and that has corrupted the place more. It is better if more secluded laces are chosen for hiking in Greece like the Imbros gorge where the path is covered in the famous woods of Greece. The forests have been there for centuries and they are yielding some remarkable super benefits to this country. The deepening gorge, the hike through it can occasionally frighten some of the more daring and expert hikers. There are breath taking heights and chilling widths that make this route more exciting. It is though advised to not risk any adventure with which one is not accustomed. The route is not very welcoming.
There are many more places that are very interesting from hiking perspective. There are more places that provide an adrenalin rush, some which in cool climate take the exhaustion of walking; some in their scenic beauties make promise of another visit. The best sceneries of this country lie along the routes of those dangerous, treacherous routes of the gorges and one must be well prepared for them. A well designed old shoe, preferably used for hiking only, some easy to carry small haversack like luggage, plenty of non carbonated fluids, a well informed map, in present times GPS device, name of locations on route for food and replenishments are all very necessary in preparation. Apart from this a good Swiss knife, rope, candle, lighter, if night stay is planned provisions for that, some illuminating materials to chase wild animals are also must for hiking. Many of the hiking sites require entry from other countries and visa applications and permits should also ask for permissions from those countries also, otherwise the complete plan is spoilt. The professional guides with some reputation are also booked in advance, it is better to do that rather than move aimlessly.
Foreigners may be permitted up to a certain point in some of the more sensitive places with military or other requirements and that should be enquired and prior permission obtained. It is better if one of the easily available hiking operators is contacted well in advance so that after briefing also there is adequate time for preparation.
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