It is winter, it is cold and you are relaxed, in your room with warm coffee admiring the beautiful view from your window. The traditional stone houses of the village are almost fully covered with snow,and in the background the snow-capped mountains are awe-inspiring. Glad you don’t have to go anywhere except when you are hungry, and this is how it is like visiting Zagorohoria on some winter day, looking for calmness , relaxation and good food. But come on, let me tell you Zagorochoria is just as wonderful during the summer months too!

Few people will consider of spending their summer holidays away from an island and the sea – anyway we Greeks live for the summers on the island – but those who do, will experience a completely different version of our beautiful country and a an alternative, summer vacation.

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Having visited Zagorochoria in winter, and wanting to escape the hustle and bustle of the island, I decided in August to visit them again for two days. And the truth is, i have  loved them again from the beginning. Let me tell you why visiting Zagorochoria during the summer is a MUST!


I suggest that you stay in some of the lower villages as they are much cheaper and quieter, and if you have a vehicle you can wander around with ease. We chose to stay in Vitsa this time, and in the past we have stayed in the Kipoi. Both villages are excellent choices.

Summer activities in Zagorohoria

Zagorochoria in summer is a paradise for nature lovers. A place full of hiking trails, scattered villages, mountains and rivers await you to explore them. Even if you are not really a nature person  you simple will not be able to resist a short walk !

Vikos Canyon

The most popular and well-known route to Zagori is the crossing of the Vikos ravine that starts from the village of Vikos and ends at Monodendri or vice versa. The route runs on a clearly visible and very well signposted path and rewards you with its natural beauty. In order to cross this particular route of about 5 hours, one must have a relatively good physical condition, as at some points even if the final destination is Monodendri, the path becomes quite uphill.

Another option, if you do not want to cross the ravine but want to admire it, is to reach Monodendri by road, drink your coffee and cross the Square and continue on the left for about ten minutes, to reach the Monastery of Agia. Paraskevi that literally hangs over the ravine.

You have two more options, one is reaching high above the Monodendri, crossing the Stone Forest, to reach Oxia. There you leave your car, go about 100 meters and overlook this view.

Similarly, another option is to drive to the village of Vradeto and from there take a slightly tiring hike to Beloi.

Village hopping

Zagorochoria in the summer is a heaven for village lovers! Yes, the style is the same in the wider area, but each village has its own aura and energy and unique things to see. The Little and Big Papigo are the most cosmopolitan and Tsepelovo the largest in population. Aristi is classy and very close to the Voidomatis River and the Vikos – Aoos National Park, Elati with its tiny square and Monodendri takes you straight to the Vikos Gorge.

A visit to the «Oreivatis» grocery is a must. This café is a cooperative café, a café that emerged through the social cooperative business called «The Zagori of Solidarity». There besides your coffee you can buy local products, which are displayed inside the cafe.

Vitsa, a historic and tranquil village and Kipoi with magnificent bridges that sprout up in the surrounding area. My new favorite village of Kapesovo, small and picturesque, with a magnificent view of its square.

Don’t forget to have your coffee here  

Sports Activities

Don’t worry, I’m not talking about long hikes or tiring hikes (necessarily). If you want something more relaxed but at the same time something that will make you feel even closer to nature I have the right suggestions.


What could you possible think would be more beautiful than crossing a fascinating path, trying to trust for the first time in the feet and the company of a horse. A great idea, even if you are alone or with your family and needs no previous experience.


Clean crystal clear waters, lush vegetation, stone bridges, monasteries .. Reaching the banks of the river, get ready for an unprecedented experience in the frigid waters of Voidomatis. Aside from getting to know a great sport, the images you see throughout the ride are unique! The route is a bit difficult so don’t think about it at all! It’s a truly wonderful experience!

We trusted and loved  Via Natura .Apart from our safe and secure route, the excellent communication we had and the very good prices, these are great guys who are passionate about what they do and love their place! We look forward to returning in the winter months to see the river dressed in its white!

Flying Fox

Using climbing equipment, we are suspended by a pulley sliding on a sloping rope from one bank of the river to another. Impressive activity! The speed is constantly increasing until the brakes operate just before the trees.

Hiking to Drakolimni

And something about those a little more courageous  in the end. A fantastic 8-9 hour hiking trail, starting at Papigo, stopping at the Astraka refuge and then hiking up to Drakolimni at an altitude of 2070 meters! (Goal I have set for next year)

Food pit stops

This time we tried and recommend two excellent restaurants located in Vitsa.

Κανέλα και Γαρύφαλλο

Kanela kai Garyfallo is a themed restaurant dedicated to mushrooms, the exotic fruits of Epirus’s wildlife. With a prime view of the beautiful Vitsa and Vikos Gorge, the restaurant is located in central Zagori just 1.5 km before Monodendri and 30 minutes from Ioannina. A unique taste experience, featuring unique mushrooms in our country! It is a good idea to make a reservation as the place is always full!

Στα ριζά

Sta Riza A wonderful traditional place, where genuine continental cuisine meets the magnificent view of the whole of Pindos. We chose a table with a good view and enjoyed all our dishes! Don’t forget to try the pies!

Zagorohoria is my personal paradise. I hope it becomes yours too.

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