Category Archives: Florina to Kastoria

Florina to Panagia church: The first day

“Help!” There was a creepy crawly on my neck and I was getting stung. What was it? How serious was the sting? We were already in trouble. We’d taken a shortcut through the forest, the footpath had petered out into … Continue reading

Posted in Florina to Kastoria | Comments Off on Florina to Panagia church: The first day

Panagia church to Pisoderi: Rain!

The day started with bright sunshine, as we climbed higher through beech woods and  meadows sparkling with flowers. Veryan and I bounded from one new flower to the next, exclaiming at each discovery: orchids, foxtail lilies, little purple pansies. “Not … Continue reading

Posted in Florina to Kastoria | Comments Off on Panagia church to Pisoderi: Rain!

Prespa interlude: The forgotten lakes

For many years, Prespa was forbidden territory. During the Greek Civil War (1946-49), it was one of the last strongholds of the Left. As the fighters and their families fled across the border to Albania and on to exile throughout … Continue reading

Posted in Florina to Kastoria | Comments Off on Prespa interlude: The forgotten lakes

Vigla to Agios Germanos: Down to the lakes

It was a cold grey Sunday morning when we set off from Vigla up through the beechwoods towards Anthovouni (Flower Mountain)  and the Varnous range. A line of turbines snaked out of the mist along the range above us. There … Continue reading

Posted in Florina to Kastoria | Comments Off on Vigla to Agios Germanos: Down to the lakes

Agios Germanos to Mikrolimni: Dog day

“You’re going up into the mountains?” said the girl in the little Plati supermarket in horror. “Aren’t you afraid? I’ve never been up there. There’s snakes, bears, wolves and ….,” she paused to emphasise her concern, “Albanians!” We’d stopped to … Continue reading

Posted in Florina to Kastoria | Comments Off on Agios Germanos to Mikrolimni: Dog day

Mikrolimni to Vatochori: Bear in the night?

“Beware the bears” , the girl in the supermarket had said. We lay in our tents in the dark, not daring to move.  Something big had crashed through the undergrowth and was nosing around  the campsite. It barked – again … Continue reading

Posted in Florina to Kastoria | Comments Off on Mikrolimni to Vatochori: Bear in the night?

Vatochori to Ano Kranionas: Meet the Albanians!

We were a little jaded the following morning, as we struggled up along faint paths, and new unmarked tracks, through pastureland and into the forest.  There was the sound of chainsaws in the distance, and suddenly we came over a … Continue reading

Posted in Florina to Kastoria | Comments Off on Vatochori to Ano Kranionas: Meet the Albanians!

Ano Kranionas: Dog in the night

Oh no, not again. I was drifting off to sleep, snug in our tent in the deserted village of Ano Kranionas. Suddenly, we heard barking coming closer, then the sounds of an animal padding round the tents and campfire. But … Continue reading

Posted in Florina to Kastoria | Comments Off on Ano Kranionas: Dog in the night

Ano Kranionas to Kastoria: Heat exhaustion

We were now almost off the map. It wouldn’t be the last time that the 1:50,000 Anavasi map stopped, with a large gap before the next one took over. And I had sent the 1:250,000 map of Macedonia to be … Continue reading

Posted in Florina to Kastoria | Comments Off on Ano Kranionas to Kastoria: Heat exhaustion

Kastoria interlude: Mink coats and lakeside cafes

We enjoyed two days of luxury. We sank into the lakeside armchairs of Kastoria and sipped cappucinos. We explored the Byzantine churches and old fur trader mansions, and we got lost in the narrow streets. But mostly we did nothing … Continue reading

Posted in Florina to Kastoria | Comments Off on Kastoria interlude: Mink coats and lakeside cafes