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Prespa Lakes: the magic of water and mountain

Macedonia ● 17 August 2017
 

In the region of western Macedonia (Greece), in a close distance to the town of Florina, are located two stunning lakes, Prespa Lakes. Amazing natural beauty, traditional mountainous villages and rare wildlife constitute one of the most important national parks in Greece. At an altitude of 850 meters, the magical landscape is inspiring, with snow-capped mountains reflected on the calm waters of the lakes where fishermen cast their nets and birds fly among the reeds.

The area of Prespa Lakes is renowned for its rich biodiversity as it is home to 260 species of birds, 1,500 plants, 23 fish and 60 mammals species- that is more than half of the species to be found in Greece and Europe. Pelicans, ducks, cormorants, herons and geese are only some of the interesting animals you can watch in Prespa Lakes, the natural paradise where man and nature live together in harmony.

Prespa Lake

Agios Germanos is the biggest and prettiest of Prespa's villages. Early 20th century stone houses with red tile roofs, a church that dates back to the 11th century, a traditional fully restored watermill, the springs of Motsara and Potistra and a walking trail with magnificent view create an astonishing scenery.

Vrontero is a farming village with grazing horses and shepherds with their flocks, which make you feel like having travelled back in time.

Mikrolimni is a tiny village with only 70 residents and an old-world atmosphere. Here, starts a lovely trail, which ends at the deserted village of Kranies. The route takes about 4 hours, and the view of Small Prespa from Kale Hill is fantastic.

On the shore of Big Prespa, from Psarades village, you can take the boat tour at the lake, which is an important bird refuge. In addition to rare birds, you will also see caves and three hermitages with wonderful wall paintings. Guided tours are also offered by the Society for the Protection of Prespa. These tours include bird-watching and walking in the forest of Juniperus foetidissima and Juniperus excelsa.

The region of Prespa Lakes is renowned for its beans. Plake (=flat) and gigantes (=giant) varieties are certified with Protected Geographical Indication status. In the villages around the lakes, you will find many shops with traditional products, traditional cafés and taverns to eat and drink as well as guesthouses to spend in this heaven some days of total relaxation and contact with nature.

Where to Stay

Hotel & Hostel in Thessaloniki, Greece Hotel Kastoria
Hotel Kastoria
17, Leontos Sofou str., 54626 Thessaloniki, Greece

Hotel Kastoria is located just a 5-minute walk from Ladadika, the historic center of Thessaloniki with many restaurants, bars and shops. Eleftherias Square can be reached in less than 10 minutes on foot, and Aristotelous Square is at 1 km. Thessaloniki Airport Makedonia is 20 km away.

Hostel in Thessaloniki, Greece Arabas Studios
Arabas Studios
28, Sahtouri Str., 54632 Thessaloniki, Greece

Being located in the historic part of Thessaloniki, so called Old or Upper Town (Ano Poli), Arabas hostel is an ideal place for backpackers, groups or individual travelers looking for budget and quality accommodation in a great location. The center of the bustling city of Thessaloniki can be reached within 15 minutes on foot. The train station is at 1.5 km, while the Thessaloniki Airport Makedonia is at 20 km. Many shops, traditional taverns, bars and the historic monuments located in the center of the town can be reached within short walking distance.

Hotel in Platamonas, Greece Hotel Lego
Hotel Lego
84, Egnatias Str., 60065 Platamonas, Greece

Set at the foot of Mountain Olympus, Hotel Lego is located in the coastal town of Platamonas, just a 15-minute walk from the long Platamonas beach. The archaeological site of Dion is 30 km away from the hotel and the traditional village of Palei Poroi is only a 10-minute drive. Katerini town is at 40 km, while Thessaloniki is 110 km away.


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