Greek Easter in Zagori

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Period of operation :12-18 April 2017
Price :

1170€/ person for minimum 6 participants (for less or more participants please contact us)

Duration :7 days / 6 nights
Minimum attendance :2 participants
Level requirements :Basic Physical Condition

Experience the Greek Easter's customs in Zagori

Have the one-of-a-kind opportunity to delve into an overwhelming spiritual atmosphere and participate into sacred rituals, ancient-old traditions and joyful celebrations combined with outdoor activities in Zagori!

About Greek Easter…

Greece plays host to religious festivals with deeply rooted customs and centuries-old traditions all year round. One of the greatest celebrations of Christianity is Easter. The faithful Christians all over Greece follow the Holy Week ritual devoutly, giving themselves body and soul into the culmination of the Passion of Christ and finally rejoicing in His Resurrection. This is a 7 - day cultural trip based in the village of Kato Pedina, in the traditional cottage-inn "Anemi" combining action touring and participation in the Easter costumes. 

Day 1 - Holy Wednesday, 12th April: Arrival in Kato Pedina, Zagori

Meet in Ioannina with your guide and transfer to Kato Pedina village, Zagori. Settle to the friendly guesthouse "Anemi" and welcome dinner!

O/N in a guesthouse http://anemi-zagori.gr/  (Dinner)

Day 2 - Holy Thursday, 13th April: Hike in Zagori - Preparation of Easter treats

Today we will hike round the villages of Vitsa, Koukouli, Kipi and Dilofo. We will admire and walk on the old arched bridges, which connected Zagori villages, years ago. *Approximate hiking time: 6 – 7 hours

After the hike we will join the preparations for the celebration of the Resurrection, which start on this day. Housewives traditionally prepare the Easter brioche (“tsoureki”) and dye eggs with special red dyes, a custom that symbolises the rebirth of life and nature.

O/N at guesthouse http://anemi-zagori.gr/ (Lunch/Dinner)

Day 3 - Holy Friday, 14th April: MTBing in the Oak Forest - Participation in the Epitaph procession

The ride features spectacular views over the Mountain of Timfi, the green oak forest of Riziana and the arched stone bridges of Zagori. A perfect way to start your day! * Duration: 2 ½ - 3 hours

Good Friday is the sacred day of the culmination of the Passion of Christ. People decorate the Epitaph, as the tradition wants the Crown of Thorns of Jesus Christ to be covered with flowers. On this day of bereavement, the devout Christians are supposed not to eat anything. The Epitaph Mass takes place in the evening and then follows the circumambulation; people join the procession on its way through the streets of the village, listening to chanters in a mystic atmosphere of devout concentration.

O/N at guesthouse http://anemi-zagori.gr/ (Lunch/Dinner)

Day 4 - Holy Saturday,15th April: Vradeto Steps Hike - Resurrection celebrations - Traditional dinner

On Easter Saturday morning, preparations start for the festive dinner of the Resurrection night and housewives cook “maghiritsa” (a tripe and herb soup). In the morning we will hike the iconic Vradeto steps, a coblestone path, of 1200 steps and 39 turns. The ‘skala’ was built in 1973 in order to connect Vradeto village with the rest of the world! During the hike we will also visit the 'Beloi' view point, a naturally made stone balcony, offering magnificent views to Vikos canyon. Duration: 3 – 3.30 hours

Before midnight, we will gather in church holding our handmade candles, which we ‘ll light with the “Holy Light”. The Resurrection of Christ is celebrated at 12.00 sharp with drumbeats and fireworks. When “Christós Anésti” (Christ has risen) is proclaimed against a background of loudly pealing bells, an impressive display of fireworks light up the night sky. People say the phrase “Christós Anésti” to one another. The response is “Alithós Anésti” (He has truly risen). Then we will all gather around the festively laid table, crack red eggs and feast on the traditional 'maghiritsa'! O/N at guesthouse http://anemi-zagori.gr/ (Lunch/Dinner)

Day 5 - Easter Sunday, April 16th: Rafting in Voidomatis - Festivities and traditional lunch

On Easter Sunday morning, we will go rafting in the crystal clear Voidomatis river. An exciting descent in Europe's cleanest river! Later, we will return back to the guesthouse to celebrate the resurrection with local gastronomy, music, wine and why not dancing! As the 40 - day period of fasting finally comes to an end, lamb is usually prepared on the spit. The atmosphere is festive - full of joy and excitement! The Easter tables are set and people merrily rejoice, eat and drink with family and friends until late at night.

An unforgettable experience that should not be missed! O/N in a guesthouse http://anemi-zagori.gr/

Day 6 - Easter Monday, April 17th: Vikos gorge crossing

Today we will hike the jewel of Zagori! Vikos gorge is one of the most popular hiking destinations in Greece. The gorge consists of limestone and dolomite formations dating back to 150 million years ago and vertical walls extending up to a height of 1700meters.

The gorge is part of the 12,600 hectare Vikos-Aoos National Park and has been listed in the Guinness book of records as the deepest canyon worldwide in proportion to its width. The trail is surrounded by steep mountaintops and dense forests, which consist mostly of deciduous trees, with about 1700 plant species and subspecies. The so-called Vikos herbal practitioners used the gorge’s herbs to heal all sorts of aliments and were famous throughout Greece. Our hike starts from Monodentri and finishes at Vikos village. Duration: 6 – 7 hours Later on the day, we return to our guesthouse for Lunch, rest and farewell dinner!

O/N in a guesthouse http://anemi-zagori.gr/ (Lunch/Dinner)

Day 7 - Tuesday, April 18th: Departure

 

  • 6 O/N stays in the traditional guesthouse "Anemi" in Kato Pedina
  • 7 days qualified engglish speaking local guide 
  • all local transfers 
  • Transfer from Ioannina to Kato Pedina (day 1) & Kato Pedina to Ioannina (day 7)
  • All the traditional preperations for Holy week  (tsoureki, red eggs etc) 
  • 5 lunches during the activities 
  • 6 dinners including the celebration with lamp on Easter Sunday
  • Rafting in Voidomatis river 
  • All nescassery equipment for MTB (day 3) and for rafting (day 5) 

Accommodation

Aristi Mountain
Resort & Villas