Regional Unit of Ioannina

The Regional Unit Ioannina is the largest of the four in surface area and population. Its capital is, of course, Ioannina, a city with a significant cultural depth, landscapes of huge natural beauty and an active young population which is the heart and soul of the city. See the Island of Ioannina, wander on the cobbled alleys, Kallari Street and Pargis Square and let the road take you to Its Kale, with the stunning view to Lake Pamvotida. After a full walk around Ioannina, it is time to explore the villages and the rest of the fascinating settlements of the regional unit.

 

 

The Zagorohoria are 46 villages with traditional architecture nestled in steep slopes and hillsides between Ioannina, Metsovo and Konitsa and among forests, stone bridges, scattered on the foothills of Mt. Tymfi and next to the 2 National Parks of Epirus. The name “Zagorohoria” is of Slavic origin and means “behind the mountains”. Discover Monodendri with the breathtaking view to Vikos Gorge, the village of Aristi built on the riverbed of Voidomatis, the impressive Mikro (small) and Megalo (great) Papigo under the “Towers of Astraka” rocks, Vovousa in the heart of the “Warm Valley” Valia Calda and Zitsa with its longstanding tradition in the white wines.

 

What could we possibly say about Metsovo! This government-declared “traditional settlement” is a  mountain town nestled at an altitude of 1,160m, with an attractive background that includes the “Metsovites” (people of Metsovo) of Vlach origin, renowned woodcarvers and their works throughout Greece and the Balkans. Metsovo–the name derives from Slavic “mecka” and “ovo” meaning the “village of the bear”, has a long history with benefactors, namely Evangelos Averoff, as well as a tradition in wine with the most mountainous vineyards in Greece and its seal of approval, that of..the bear brown!

 

At the northern end of the regional unit and between the mountains of Grammos, Tymfi and Smolikas lie the Mastorohoria, 27 settlements in Konitsa, built devoutly with stone and wood by the famous Epirus stone craftsmen. Take a tour around Pyrsoyianni, Vourbiani, Plikati, Drosopigi, and Ayia Paraskevi.

 

On the lush green slopes of North Tzoumerka, the villages with traditional architecture will astound you. Pramanda, sheltered on the foot of the Strongoula peak is the epitome of Epirus authenticity, while the nearby villages of Syrrako and Kalarrytes are mountainous destinations ideal for any season of the year. Hiking the easy trail that connects these two villages is a unique experience in itself!

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