Valia Kalda, a beautiful valley in one of the most important and pristine National Parks in Greece, is located between the Regional Units of Ioannina and Grevena. Valia Kalda is the core zone of the National Park of Pindos, which has been included in the list of the most sensitive areas of the world by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature since 1987. The landscape is unique and has nothing to envy from the respective Alpine regions. Dense forests with tall fir trees, centuries-old robola, beech trees and black pines, rivers, lakes, waterfalls and streams, create a fairytale setting. The rushing “Arkoudorema” stream flows through Valia Kalda, and joins the Aoos River at Smixomata. This is the starting point of one of the most beautiful forest paths in Greece, which ascends through Arkoudolakkos to the Flenga twin lakes at the subalpine plateaus of Mavrovouni.  

The core zone of the National Park hosts and protects a wide variety of flora and fauna of unique interest and it is one of the last habitats of the brown bear.

29 species of mammals, among them the roe deer, the wolf and the otter, 28 species of reptiles and 122 species of birds, centuries-old trees, over 700 years old, rare wildflowers and 400 species of mushrooms have been recorded.

Abandoned water powered sawmills and remnants of cut down trees remind of the logging activity in the area before it was declared “Valia Kalda National Park”. Entrance for hiking is only allowed from its 3 natural entrances: “Salatoura Stavrou” in the north, “Salatoura Papagianni” in the east and “Salatoura Milias” in the southeast. May through October is the best time for activities in the National Park.

For nature lovers, staying in Valia Kalda is an unforgettable experience, especially if you choose the Valia Kalda Refuge or traditional lodgings in Vovousa and Flampourari.

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