When the land of Thessaly blooms
Like the beginning of Vivaldi’s four seasons concerto, the spring time awakening of nature moves to an allegro rhythm. The palette of colours comes alive before our eyes: the innumerable shades of green, the lavender purples and the playful wild-flower confetti is strewn throughout the land of Thessaly.
Enough joy to go round, naturally
In the shade of the Gardiki mountains, a cardigan is our shield against the morning chill. The promise of action-packed days, however, soon warms the body and sparks the imagination. You’ll be waiting for elves to pop out from behind the trees at the fairytale setting of Neraidohori as you take the mountain bike trails along the Aspropotamos river or raft on its waters? On reaching Smokovo, an enchanting artificial lake shimmers with the colours of precious gem stones. The rocks of Meteora stand like colossal birds of prey surveying the landscape for miles around. Atop these surreal natural giants perch the famous monasteries as close to the heavens as they possibly can be.
Crossing the bridge of Pili, another world awaits: a river with plane trees decorating its banks, a veritable oasis highlighted by the incomparable natural beauty of Tempi, the Pinios valley. Set aside some time to visit Agia Paraskevi, right in the middle of the valley. Rising above the scene is Mt Olympus offering a window on infinity and a sterling challenge for abseiling aficionados.
An ideal marriage of mountain and sea, Pelion can be explored either on foot or horseback. On the mountain range of Agrafa, the fresh, leafy forest of Belokomiti exudes a youthful vivacity as the animal kingdom welcomes its latest offspring into the world. Lake Plastira lies in the embrace of the “Sleeping Beauty of Agrafa”, the ridge that resembles the profile of a sleeping woman.
Diving under the influence
In Thessaly, any hesitation at the prospect of the first swim quickly evaporates in the presence of such stunning beauty. Crystalline waters await by the beaches of Vromolimnos, Glyfa, Panormos, Velika and Kala Nera, while taverns and cafes take it upon themselves to provide a little warm nourishment after many cool springtime dip.
The Greek breakfast table is set with special flavours: try aromatic fruit preserves and jams from Pelion, let the icing sugar of the “Karditsa’s loukoumi” spill everywhere without guilt and indulge yourself with a slice or two of the flavorsome Farsala halva.
In Thessaly, experiences are inscribed on the memory forever.