MOUNT OLYMPUS

MOUNT OLYMPUS

The impressive height (nearly 3000m) and formidable slopes of the Thermaic Gulfs Mt. Olympus so awed the ancients that they proclaimed it the dwelling place of the gods. A network of well-maintained hiking trails now makes the summit accessible to anyone with sturdy legs and a taste for the divine. Two approaches to the peaks begin near Litochoro (elev. 340m); the first and most popular starts at Prionia (elev. 1100m), 18km from the village, and takes one full day round-trip. The second, a longer and more picturesque route, begins at Diastavrosi (also called Gortsia; elev. 1300m), 14km away. There is no bus to the trailheads from Litochoro, so you’ll have to walk, drive, or take a taxi (from Prionia ‚20). Unless you’re handy with a crampon and an ice axe, make your ascent between May and October. Mytikas, the tallest peak, is inaccessible without special equipment before June.

Trains ( 23520 22 522) run to the Litochoro station from Athens (6hr. 4 per day, ‚15) and Thessaloniki (lV&hr. 4 per day, ‚3); a taxi from the train station to the town costs around ‚6. KTEL buses (a 23520 81 271) run from Athens (5Hhr. 3 per day, ‚25) and Thessaloniki (lMhr. 17 per day, ‚6). The tourist office is on Ag. Nikolaou by the park. ( 23520 83 100. Open July-Nov. 8:30am- 2:30pm and 5-9pm.) The EOS-run USpilos Agapitos (Refuge A or Zolotas) is about 800m below Skala and Mytikas peaks. The English-speaking staff dispenses info over the phone to prospective hikers and can also help reserve spots in other refuges. ( 23520 81 800; zolotam@hol.gr. Meals 6am-9pm. Lights out 10pm. Open mid-May to late-Oct. Dorms ‚10, members ‚8. ‚4.20 to camp nearby and use facilities.) Camp at Olympus Zeus ( 23520 22 115; sites from ‚11) on the beach about 5km from town.

MOUNT OLYMPUS Photo Gallery



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