Larissa, the city between the peaks
The people of Larissa love nature and it shows. Take a wander around the city that has given an emphatic thumbs down to concrete and cement. Today, the green, tree- planted spaces amount to more than 455,000 square metres! Aside from this, an enchanting, verdant landscape also awaits the visitor outside the city borders. So, what are you waiting for?
The leafy lanes of Larissa
“Alkazar” means Castle in Arabic. This is where your walk begins, from the park of the same name straddling the river Pinios; heart lightened by the promise of nature’s rejuvenating touch. Streets ripple out from the centre like ribbons from a maypole and the choice of route is all yours. Everywhere there are fountains; hungry ducks on ponds marshalling their offspring for the next bread blitz; children flinging themselves around playgrounds and a café not far off for a thirst-quenching juice. In the evening, you can enjoy a performance in the garden theatre. When the Pinios festival gets underway, the whole riverbank blooms even brighter, enlivened by music, dancing and visual arts of all kinds.
Next to the water’s edge, the Aesthetic Forest stuns you with its radiant green hues; the crowning glory and a great breath of life to a city already under mother nature’s spell.
“Am I looking at a painting or a village from a child’s scaled-down model landscape?” These are questions that may enter your head on first view of historic Ampelakia, clambering over the foot of Mt Kissavos. Walking the cobbled stone alleys, the urge to capture on camera the stateliness and grace of its mansions is irresistible. The three-storey Schwarz stately home is the epitome of traditional Greek architecture. You’ll admire the elaborate wooden canopy in the winter room but nothing can prepare you for the “Eagle” room with the majestic fireplace as its centerpiece.
On leaving the village, you’ll feel the mysterious lure of the ruined medieval castle of Oria, a puzzle box from the past, which today affords a wonderful view. In no time at all, you’ll be in the heart of the valley of Tempi, flanked by Mt. Olympus and Mt. Kissavos. Climb down the small steps to the springs pouring into the Pinios and join the other pilgrims at the cave of St. Kyriaki – be patient, there is only room for one at a time.
Try on the latest shade of green. Go eco for a natural fit in Larissa