Hiking trails of Poros, Trοizinia and Methana
Exercise, recreation and time travel
An area with beautiful little secrets spreads around us. Let’s discover them!
The hiking trails of Poros, Troizinia and Methana follow paths used by the locals for their transport even since antiquity. They lead us to places of historical, geological and naturalistic interest.
Katheti wanted to promote the hiking trails, because they unfold in a place with special geography and variety of landscape. They offer us the ideal conditions for escape from daily life and leisure.
They are a magnet for people who as tourists operate in a sustainable way and with respect for the local area.
Travelogue in the Methana peninsula
Wild beauty, ragged volcanic mountains, steep coasts, pine-trees, sea and an azure horizon that opens your soul. The paths of Methana, ancient roads that were once forgotten and closed, have come back and are waiting to be discovered so they can lead us closer to nature and ourselves.
Tobias Schorr has been working on the paths of Methana since 1990. After several years, in 2001, he and Spyros Papaioannou started their opening, maintenance and signalling. As a trip organizer, he has guided many groups of visitors to the peninsula over the years.
He tells us: “Methana is a paradise, a sleeping treasure”. And he continues: “Whatever time of year I walk, I find the green, a forest, a shepherd. I see the sea, the wind blows, it smells nice, there is nothing better. And in winter I walk and pick mushrooms, I eat arbutus berries, I see foxes. You can see whatever you want over there, nothing is missing.”
In 2015, the adventure of opening, maintaining and signaling the paths continued by Elias Rizos, with the help of Nikos Dimitriou and small groups of volunteers. Methana now has more than 30 kilometers of open trails and attracts mountaineering clubs, as well as individual groups of walkers.
Locals, local businesses, foreign and Greek friends of Methana have contributed to this achievement with their efforts, but also financially.
Elias Rizos tells us: “Methana has a calmness and an authenticity in the villages. Up on the mountains there is great and unknown folklore interest. Without the paths, it will be lost.” He continues: “I am moved by the old roads, because on them events of the past have taken place.
“Images come to my mind, as if I am experiencing things of the past, and they make me feel that I am the continuation of this thing.”
The paths of “retsinades” on Poros
Hiking trails on Poros bring us in contact with the pine forest and the untouched natural environment of the island. Paths of the beautiful Kalavria, which led to old settlements and were walked upon daily by the “retsinades” (resin collectors), who collected over 500 tons of resin per year from the pine forest. Several paths are maintained and many have been closed.
About seven years ago, the effort to record hiking routes on the island began by Katerina Sakelliou and Vangelis Papathymiopoulos. Today, the study for the cleaning, signaling and creation of hiking maps by the organization “Paths of Greece” has been completed.
Katerina Sakelliou tells us: “Hiking in nature helps our mental and physical health and changes our relationship with the mountain. Also, the mountain is protected from fires, because the forest is cleaned. And we pay more attention to it, because a connection is created.”
And Antonis Panou, member of the group of Poros hiking friends “Όλοι μαζί περπατάμε” (We all walk together) and collaborator of “Paths of Greece”, adds: “We are a group that organizes Sunday hikes to get to know the island. “There are beautiful places that most people have never been.”
And he continues: “We are preparing hiking routes in the pine forest of Kalavria, routes in Sphaeria, but also in Plaka-Lemonodasos, with a total length of 40 kilometers.”
The goat trails and “fryktories” in Aderes
The mountain routes are endless. The mountain from its height gives us a unique panoramic view of the Saronic Gulf and its islands. Routes which in the past were used by people and are now used by goats. Giannis Gotzias, founder of “Greek explorers” and the farm “In the land of the wolf“, explores such routes.
He tells us that near “fryktories”, a network of sites that were used in antiquity to communicate with fire signals from area to area, there are locations with a view of 270 degrees οn the Saronic and Argolic Gulf. And other places, where the eye reaches the peaks of Dirfi and Parnonas.
And he states: “The hiking trails of the wider area are a magnet, with the sea as an ally and competitor of the mountain.”
The hiking trails of Poros, Troizinia and Methana reveal the beauty of our place. The natural and cultural wealth of our area led Katheti to the decision to publish a series of articles on everything worth visiting and capitalizing on.
From the known and unknown beaches and attractions, to the local products, the handmade creations of local craftsmen, the local visual artists and the books with a local flavor, these articles combined complement Katheti and Ec(h)o’s overall project of promoting the area as a sustainable tourism destination.
Photo 1: poros.com
Photo 2, 13: troizinia-methana.gr
Photo 3, 11, 12: In the land of the wolf
Photo 4: Tobias Schorr
Photo 5, 6: volcanotrails.gr
Photo 7, 8, 9: Antonis Panou
Photo 10: iporos.com