This tour is probably the best choice for someone who wants to get to know the area of Zagori and Konitsa and get a glimpse of how the locals lived thousands of years ago. On this tour, you will have the opportunity to learn the history of the area, to listen to all the legends and interesting stories by the locals, to ride your e-bikes and explore the most picturesque, known, unknown, hidden and remote villages, but also to visit interesting museums and to adhere to local customs etc. You will walk through the narrow cobbled streets of the traditional settlements and you will see objects of everyday life of the locals; you will be astonished by the unique historic stone bridges and the stories accompanying them; you will learn traditional food recipes and cook traditional pies and you will taste local dishes and drinks made with garden-fresh, just-picked herbs, fruit, and vegetables. Cycling in the area, you will meet fantastic landscapes that even locals may not have discovered, you will take small hikes, swim in rivers and waterfalls and admire the unique Vikos gorge and the greatest part of Vikos Aoos National Park.
We believe that cycling is the best way to get to know an area; that is why we propose a quite comprehensive tour to Zagori and Konitsa area. Our e-bikes will definitely turn this tour into an unforgettable experience offering you a beautiful journey back in time so as to discover local culture and history.
General Tour Map
Our meeting point will be in the village of Kipoi (39km from Ioannina). Once we are provided with the necessary information about the route and "get familiarized" with our e-bikes, we turn our pedals for our final destination, Kapesovo. After cycling for about 3km, we will have our first short stop at the historic Misios bridge. Our next stop will be at Koukouli village where we visit the Lazaridis Folklore Museum, which is housed in the traditional residence of the teacher Kostas Lazaridis. There, we will admire more than 1250 species of local medicinal herbs and herbs, which were once used by the famous "Vikogiatroi" (local healers) of Zagori for pharmaceutical purposes. After walking through the village cobbled streets, we will ride our bicycles following a route of 5.5km to Kapesovo village. There, we leave our bikes and end the cycling part of the day. After drinking our coffee or tea in the village square and tasting traditional pastries, we start our hike to Beloi crossing the historic Skala Vradeto with more than 1200 stairs, the construction of which lasted about 20 years. Once we reach the highest village of Zagori, Vradeto, we will head for Beloi, perhaps the best location to admire the view of Vikos gorge. The view is really unique! We will enjoy delicious sandwiches made from local products and afterwards we will return to Vradeto and from there we will continue our hike until we reach the beautiful Kapesovo village. After resting in the guesthouse, we will have a short walk in the narrow cobbled streets of the village and we will eat all together discussing and analyzing the next day's program.
The second day includes the most favorite route of many cyclists because it combines traditional villages such as Tsepelovo, Skamnelli and Iliohori but also green forests of pine and fir trees, giving us the feeling that we are now alone in nature. We depart from Kapesovo after breakfast and ride about 7 km downhill to Tsepelovo, which used to be the administrative center of Zagori. There, at the village square, we will have our first stop. We should definitely visit he church of Agios Nikolaos with its unique frescoes and take a walk in the narrow cobbled streets of the village. We will drink our coffee or tea and we will return to our bikes for an easy route of 4 km until we reach our next short stop in Skamneli village. After a beautiful walk through the village streets, we ride our bikes following a quite easy route of 10 km, up to "Gyftokambos" and the Sarakatsaniki Stani (barn), a unique open-air museum with small sheep farms, sheds, looms and other dwellings, representing the old way of life of Sarakatsani nomadic farmers. Here, we will also have our picnic at a splendid location amongst pine and fir trees. Afterwards, we will ride our bicycles cycling for 7km until we reach Iliochori village. There, we will leave our bicycles and follow a beautiful 1-km hiking trail descend to the waterfalls of the village, a "hidden paradise" where during the summer months you won’t resist a dive in its cool turquoise waters. We will taste homemade tsipouro and liqueurs, accompanied by traditional mezedes (small bite meals) and we will relax admiring this beautiful edifice of nature. Then we will return and get on our bikes to start the last cycling part of the day. We will cycle for about 5.5 km until we reach the last village of Zagori, the beautiful Vrysochori village. There we will relax in the guesthouse rooms and in the evening we will eat all together in a cozy local café-restaurant enjoying homemade food and desserts; we will hear stories from the locals and learn all the details of the next day’s program.
The first light of day finds us in Vrysochori village. From this point the route is different in relation to Zagori area. We will have our breakfast gazing at the fantastic view of the Tsuka Rosa peak and the other peaks before our eyes and then we will depart for Konitsa. After a 5- km downhill route, we come across the Aoos river; there we can drink our coffee or tea and during the summer months we can swim in the clean river waters. Then we ride our e-bikes and follow a 6.5-km uphill route to Paleoseli village. We will have a short stop to visit the church of Agia Paraskevi with its characteristic tilt (2 degrees below that of the tower of Pisa) and continue for 6 km downhill until Elefthero village where we will have a long stop for picnic or lunch at a local restaurant. Then, we will follow a unique 18km-route through a wooded area with fantastic landscapes until we reach Konitsa town. The first 9 km are uphill, but our e-bikes will make sure that we will enjoy the journey without much fatigue. The rest 9 kilometers are downhill and once we reach Konitsa, we will settle in the hotel and get a good rest. In the afternoon, we can walk to and over the stone bridge of Konitsa and cross the Aoos gorge or perhaps we can visit the monastery of Stomio following a beautiful hiking path within the gorge. We end our day with a meal at a local tavern with traditional food and we will discuss the next day's program and the interesting stories of the villages that we will visit.
On the 4th day we have breakfast in Konitsa and we get prepared for our route to Aristi, a picturesque village of Zagori. The route is completely different from what we have experienced so far. The valley of Konitsa and the Aoos river gradually replace the dense forests, the mountain villages and the high peaks.. We depart from Konitsa to visit the Holy Monastery of Molyvdoskepasti, following a 19km flat route. We will ride along the Konitsa plain and reach the Monastery of Molyvdoskepasti, a historic monastery built in 671-672 AD. After a guided tour at the Monastery, we return following the route until we reach Bourazani area and the watermill. There we will learn how locals wash their cloths and carpets without using detergent. We will have a nice coffee or tea and then continue for about 20 km on one of the most beautiful routes in the area, since the view is really astonishing: thanks to the plain in Konitsa, the Aoos Gorge, the point that the Voidomatis river joins the Aoos , the Vikos gorge and Astraka rocky towers. After an uphill route (of about 6km), we reach Kleidonia and the homonymous bridge. There, we will leave our bikes for a while and follow a short hiking trail along the Voidomatis river, which is one of Europe's cleanest and coldest rivers. A great picnic with homemade delicacies and local tsipouro or wine will be waiting for us in the middle of our journey. We will relax under the plane trees and during the summer months we will even have the chance to swim in the cold waters of the river. Continuing our journey, we will reach Aristi bridge and ride our bikes for the last 3 km to our hotel. We will have some time to rest and in the evening we will visit Papigo village. We will wander through the cobbled streets and afterwards we will enjoy a nice meal at a traditional local tavern. We can even go to the tavern's beautiful garden and collect the vegetables we will be using for our meal.
The 5th day of our tour starts from Aristi village. We will cycle for about 4.5 km to Vikos village following a very easy route. There, at "Rachi" location, we will drink our coffee gazing at the magnificent view of the Vikos gorge and the Voidomatis river springs. The route to Elafotopos village is about 14 km; the first 4km and the last 3km of the route being uphill. However, our e-bike will turn this route into an wonderful experience with plenty of different landscapes along our way. In Elafotopos village, we will meet Lena, who will teach us how to make the traditional Epirus cheese pie. While waiting for the pie to be baked, Lena will guide us to the old looms. She will describe the wool cycle and help us create our own memorabilia using the "felt" technique of flutter. Then, we will enjoy a rich lunch with pies and salads with fresh vegetables from Lena's garden and of course home-made tsipouro and wine. Moreover, depending on the time of our visit, we may also have the opportunity to visit its livestock farm and perhaps test our skills in sheep milking or make our own butter or cheese. Then, after saying farewell to Lena, we will visit Mr. Michalis and the Museum of Traditional Professions in the old school building of the village. In fact this museum still acts as a kind of "school" since it travels us back in time and introduces us to professions that have long ceased to be exercised and most of us are not aware of them. Once tour to the museum is completed, we will follow a 5.5km downhill route to Ano Pedina village where we will spend the night after having our dinner at a local tavern.
The last day of our multi-day tour includes a 17km cycling route, an interesting guided bird watching experience and a tour to some of the most famous and beautiful stone bridges of the area. After breakfast, we say goodbye to Ano Pedina village and meet Tonia and Nikos from Plegadis company, who will initiate us to the observation and recognition of the area's bird species; depending on the season, we may have the chance to see rare bird species such as short-toed snake eagles, lesser grey shrikes, red-backed shrikes, red-rumped swallows, African Stonechats, Corn Buntings etc. Then we will leave the binoculars and telescopes and head for our final destination: Kipoi village. After cycling for about 10 km, we reach Dilofo, the most picturesque traditional village of Zagori. This is the ideal location for a short stop, for a stroll through the cobbled streets, the traditional houses and the tallest traditional stone house of Zagori area. We will keep cycling for yet another 2.5 km until we reach the famous Noutsos or Kokkoris stone bridge. On our way to Kipoi village, we will also visit the beautiful Plakida (or Kalogeriko) stone bridge, the Kontodimos (or Lazaridis) bridge and the Mylos bridge. This will be the end of our cycling day; optionally, we can visit the Folk Museum of Kipoi to discover more than 40000 objects of the Zagori residents' everyday life. Impressed by the vast variety of the exhibits, we will enjoy a nice meal at a local restaurant, completing a tour full of wonderful memories, fantastic landscapes and villages, abundant historical information, and of course, new friendships.
1. How many persons can participate at the tour?
4-6 persons can participate at the tours. In case you are less than 4 persons, there will be an extra charge which will be agreed prior to the tour.
2. How many stops are there during the tours?
During each tour there are stops every 10-15km depending on the sites of interest and the route difficulty. Of course more stops can be done, in case this is necessary.
3. What happens in case of rain?
In case of light rain, BIKEWISE provide waterproof jackets and we keep on pedaling. In case of heavy rain, there is always the option of the accompanying van.
4. Can I rent a bike and make the tour without the guide?
Unfortunately not! All multi-day tours have be accompanied by a guide and a van.
5. Can children participate at the tour?
Children over 16 years old can participate at the tour accompanied by an adult.
6. What piece f equipment do I have to bring with me at the tours?
BIKEWISE provides helmets, protection grasses, gloves, waterproofs. Of course, you can bring your own cycling equipment and we will adjust it to our bikes.
7. How can I pay for the tour?
We can pay for your tour either by bank transfer or by Paypal. In any case, you need to deposit the total amount prior to the tour.
8. In case I want to cancel the tour, is there any refund?
In case of a tour cancellation, the following cancellation fees are applied: Up to 30 days prior to the tour: 100€/person, 29-15 prior to the tour: 250€/person, 14-01 prior to the tour: The total amount of the tour.
9. The price included museums and archaeological sites entrances?
The price does not include any entrances at museums and archaeological sites.
10. Are there any snacks provided during the tour?
During your tour we will be offered water and you can choose among a variety of snacks: fresh fruits, isotonic drinks, energy bars as well as local traditional products.
11. Can I participate at the tour with a conventional bike?
Of course! Nevertheless, we suggest the e-bike so as to enjoy the tour and the unique landscape in the most relaxed way.
12. Can I participate at the tour with my own bike?
You can participate at the tour after necessary arrangements with BIKEWISE.
13. Can a friend of mine be at the accompanying van?
Of course! All you need to do is to complete the corresponding fields at the reservation form.
14. Can my pet be at the accompanying van?
Of course! It will be our pleasure to take care of your pet. All you need to do is to inform us bout it prior to the tour.