Ochi has wonderful trekking paths that bring us closer to nature
The trekking and mule paths and the stone paved lanes were once the only means of communication and transport in Ochi. It is on these paths that the life of the area flowed. Many of the traditional paths continue to serve the locals and shepherds still use the old lanes, particularly those that lead to the summer highland grazing lands. These lanes pass through harsh terrain, where there are still no modern paved roads and are a testimony to the presence of human habitation since time immemorial.
It is certain that there was an ancient paved road from Karystos to ancient Geraistos. Some sections of this ancient road still exist in Kastri. Remains of roads that were used during the Ro- man era to transport cipollino marble are evident near the old quarries such as at Kylindroi and above Myloi. Many paths were created or improved during the Ottoman era. Stone paved roads were built by Greek masons at the orders of the Turkish landowners, as were arched bridges and public wells. Some still exist and are unique monuments of the local culture. Most of the old lanes are a heritage from the past that is being lost. Migration meant that agriculture was neglected and people now use the modern roads which are frequently built on top of and conceal the old paths.
Some paths are ideal for leisure pursuits. A great way for one to feel in touch with nature is to walk on them. Today, some of the old paths are being cleared and signposted and new ones are being opened. In this way, anyone can enjoy the environment, walking on old byways that traditional culture built.
There are many possibilities while hiking in Ochi Mountain. The Gorges are unique with reach fauna and flora and we highly recommend to choose one of them. You can also check our Sample Routes hereunder. It is for sure that either the one or the other will definitely make your day!
The traverse of the Cavo d' oro mountains ridgeline is an ideal opportunity to acquaint oneself with the rare mountainous landscapes of Mt Ochi. The traverse starts from Petrokanalo and finishes in the village of Agatho. Transfer (from Karystos or Marmari) to the starting point and return from the finishing point after the end of the two-day walk is done by car. (The walk can be organised by the Association for the Protection of the Environment of Karystos - info: firstname.lastname@example.org).
Day 1: transfer by car to Petrokanalo (alt. 965m) at the top of Dimosari gorge. Starting from Petrokanalo, we follow the path that runs below the peak of Youda towards the impressive saddle of Samari, perhaps the most distinctive viewpoint of the walk. We continue on the ridgeline Samari - Stefani - Kerasia with panoramic views over the gorge of Dimosari, the Straits of Cavodoro, Cape Kafireas and the east coastline of Evia. Overnight camping at the position Stavros above the village of Komito.
Time: 6 hrs continuous walk
Day 2: starting early in the morning, we leave Stavros and follow a distinctive trail that runs through clumps of dwarf plane trees. We walk past the shrine of Agia Sofia, a typical feature of folk architecture, and continue on the south foot of the imposing Mt Anatoli. We cross over to the northeast flank through a geologically breathtaking pass called Anemopyles. We continue downhill through a virgin forest of arbutus and holly oak until we reach the chapel of Agia Sofia. Sheer cliffs, thick vegetation and a rocky coastline are the main features of this wild landscape. The trail goes through the hamlet of Gialpides, built on a steep coastal slope. From this point we follow the dirt track to the village of Agatho.
Time: 6-7 hrs continuous walk
If there is time, the walk can be followed by a swim on Kallianou beach.
Return to Karystos or Marmari by car.
2,5 hours. No shade on walk. Shade at picnic area
Start at the church of Agia Sofia (St. Sofia) in Grabia which is built on the site of a mosque. Below the church are 5 fountains where water flows from below the church. Follow the main road left and take the "kalderimi" (stone path) on the right uphill to Agia Aikaterini (St. Katherin) church. Turn right at the church along a path and then left to the aquaduct (Kamares) which carried water to the upper part of the old city. Take the path under the aquaduct down to a stream, cross the stream and follow the path along the valley. You have wonderful views of the Castle. At the end of the path is a Turkish fountain. The path joins a road and uphill you can visit the church Ag. Theodori (St. Theodori), on the left is a picnic area. Downhill is the church of Agia Paraskevi (St. Paraskevi). The road goes downhill to Myli passing 2 Turkish fountains on the right. Go downhill past a tavern and turn right towards the castle. Cross the stream and go uphill on the road, which goes around the hill, this will take you back to Grabia
1,5 hours. Partly shaded
Start at the monastery of Agia Mavra on the Karystos to Myli road. Walk towards Myli. Passed an open water storafe tank, take the first path on the left. Cross the bridge and follow the "kalderimi" (stone path). Go uphill to the right to the church of Agia Marina (St. Marina). The church has a very nice view and lots of trees around it. Walk downhill south-east and follow the stone wall of Montofoli Estate on the right. On the third gate of the estate, you can see the vineyards that produce the Sweet Wine "Ktima Montofoli". Then go right and continue straight onto a stone path, between two gates. A bit further, down on your left, you will find the ruin of the old church of Metamorfosis. Follow the same path down and turn right. To visit the Metamorfosis church, you will have to climb a low stone wall on the south side of the church (this area is the site of the old town of Karystos). After visiting the church, turn left onto the path that takes you to main road. Turn left along the main road. A bridge crosses a stream and under this bridge is an old stone bridge "Drymonia". This is a very cool place to rest and perfect for picnics. Cross the bridge and take the first narrow road to the left. This road follows the stream and goes back to the main Myli – Karystos road. Turn left, uphill to return to starting point.
1,5 hours. Shade on first part of walk
In Kalivia where the road from Kalivia, Lala and Karystos meet, you will see a new fountain. Follow the road to Lala uphill, past the church of St. IRENE. Further along the road you will see a beautiful old house on the left. The house is whitewashed and has blue doors and windows. Opposite the house take the path along the side of the stream, follow the path along the side of the stream, follow the path to an old stone bridge and a ruined building. Bamboo grows here and the area is shaded. Cross over the bridge and follow the path uphill, past a stone built house at the right. At the top of the hill, turn left along a path. On the left, on the field, is a wonderful old stone house. At the end of the path you will find a "kalderimi" (stone path) going left downhill to a Turkish fountain and an old mill. Follow the "kalderimi" and the path back again until your reach the concrete road, turn left up a steep hill to the church Taxiarches, the church of Archangels Michael and Gabriel. The church is Byzantine, built at the end of the 12th century. After visitng the church, follow the concrete road back downhill, past Agia Varvara (St. Barbara) into the village of Kalivia. Turn right past the school; continue along the main road back to the new fountain.
2 hours approx. Shade at Agia Triada.
Start at the covered bus stop in Nikasi (area Papachristou). Take the steep hill at the side of the bus stop, up to the church of Agios Ioannis (St. John), after the church turn left. On the right is a Turkish fountain. Take first uphill and the left onto a dirt road. The road leads to Agia Triada (the Holy Trinity Church). The church festival is in June. A stream starts here from a cave under the church. Thisi is very nice picnic area. Remains found here show the site was used in Neolithic Times. Return back along the road and take the steep road on the right downhill to a stream and an old stone bridge. Cross the stream, and go along the path below a farm building. This path has lots of flowers and huge stones. Go through a gate and turn first left downhill to main Nikasi –Kalyvia road. Turn left and when you reach the stream you can visit a Turkish fountain on the right, at the side of the stream. Continue along the road back to Nikasi. The fountains were built by Greek/Albanians during the Turkish occupation in the 19th century
1,5 hours. Shade at VARDIANI and on the next KALDERIMI
The walk begins in Nikasi village at the covered bus stop. Walk towards Kalyvia. Take the second road to the left, then first right up past the chapel of Agia Irini(St. Irene) in your left. Follow the road straight on, where the road bends left. Take the "kalderimi" (stone path) straight ahead. From the path you have a panoramic view of the area. The path goes downhill until it meets a tarmac road. This path is steep and uneven. On your right under a new bridge is an old stone bridge. Straight across the road path leads to where the streams from Lala and Agia Triada meet. This was the site of Vardiani (Vardeearnee) bridge which was the west entrance to Karystos town and was guarded. Back on the tarmac road turn left uphill and then take the first "kalderimi" on the right. This kalderimi heads uphill, it is steep and uneven. At the top turn right. This kalderimi leads to an old stone bridge on the right of a new bridge. Follow the road uphill to Agios Ioannis (St. John) in Kalyvia, on your left. Turn right and then left and follow the road back to Nikasi.