Safari Escape to Parnitha Mountain
Escape to Parnitha National Park in a semi-private safari tour group of no more than 6 guests per premium off-road vehicle. Driven by multilingual guide/drivers, you will be introduced to Mount Parnitha and discover a densely forested mountain range 40km north of Athens. This destination provides the opportunity to enjoy unspoiled nature and is the perfect, serene place to relax away from the hustle and bustle of city life. Take a moment, stop what you are doing and close your eyes to immerse yourself in the smell of pine and fir. Listen in this true oasis for many species of wildlife, such as red deer, foxes, and different kinds of birds. During the hottest summer days, you will find cool relief in a place that will help you become one with your surroundings.
Your journey begins with a pickup from the port and you will then set off following the road which leads to Parnitha Mountain. Along the way you will make a stop to pick up your morning coffee, tea or juice. After approximately less than an hour of driving you will have left Athens and the noise of the city center behind as you will find the entrancement of the mountains. This densely forested mountain range north of Athens is the highest on the peninsula of Attica, with an elevation of 1413 meters (4636 feet) and a summit known as Karavola. Much of the mountain is designated a national park, and is a protected habitat for wildfowl, first created in 1961. Parnitha National Park commands ecological interest and constitutes a reserve for the protection and preservation of Southern Greece's flora and fauna. The flora is one of the richest in Greece, boasting 818 recorded plant species, many of which are endemic or listed as critically endangered. The area's fauna includes many species protected under law both at the national and international level. Indicative of this is the fact that Parnitha is the only area in Southern Greece where the red deer (Cervus elaphus) still survives.
Your first destination will be at an altitude of 600m at Lake Beletsi, an artificial lake that seems to have been created from a fairytale. This picturesque landscape resembles the Alps and is not at all reminiscent of anything you will see in or around Athens, Greece. Continuing your route, follow a unique off-road course through the forest full of pine trees, goats, chapels, monasteries and natural springs.
Soon you will approach Avlonas Village, crossing through the village and continuing on you will travel to the Voutima Wildlife Refuge. The uniqueness of the terrain, dense vegetation, rare species of endemic plants, different kinds of mammals and birds are spread in smaller or larger areas of the mountain.
Reaching the west slope of Parnitha Mountain, an incredible and panoramic, breath-taking view of the Saronic Gulf with the islands of Salamina and Aigina will appear in front of you. Driving on the asphalt road and enjoying the view of Saronic from above, you will next arrive at Hasia village, where it is time to stop for lunch. Visit a traditional Greek tavern where you will be welcomed by the owner. He will introduce you to delicious Greek Mediterranean cuisine with many options, plus wine and his warm, Greek hospitality.
After lunch, it's back on the trail, where you will follow the road making a return to Athens through different villages before reaching the city. Your knowledgeable, local guides are professionals who are passionate about what they do, and they will create a most memorable day out of the city, offering panoramic vistas with amazing photo opportunities at every turn. Your tour will plan to make stops every 30-40 minutes for comfort and convenience.