Vravrona wetlands and hills, 20 Oct.

On Saturday 20th October, join the Athens Strollers on a new walk starting at the wet lands in Vravrona. Carol and Joe are our walk leaders and the walk starts at 3.00 p.m. The duration of the walk (with stops) is approximately 2.5 hours. If you need to contact Carol, call 6944240222.

We walk through the wet lands, a protected site under the Natura 2000 programme, before climbing up and down 2 hills. The first hill is quite steep and the ground rather uneven and rocky. The remainder of the walk takes us through vines fields, past pistachio plantations, fig and olive trees. Although most of the walk is on flat land, the hill climb and terrain make this walk of medium difficulty.

As the ground going uphill is stony and uneven, hiking shoes/boots are necessary. Additionally, we are following sheep tracks through some scrub, so leave the shorts at home and wear trousers. If the weather is still hot, don’t forget sun tan lotion and water. Also, we are walking in ‘sheep country’ and flies can be a nuisance, so be prepared with an anti insect spray or Citronella.

How to get to the start of the walk

From the northern suburbs and the city centre: Take the Attiki Odos in the direction of Markopoulo. At the end of the motorway, go through 2 sets of traffic lights. Turn left at the next traffic lights. There is a sign for Porto Rafti here, and there is a large green sign advertising Pet City. You are now on the ‘ring road’ around Markopoulo. Go along this road till you see the ‘NO ENTRY” sign, and turn right. Drive up this road passing a school and a Papagalino pastry shop (both on the right). At the ‘stop’ sign turn left (there is a ‘Coffee More’ shop at this junction. You are now on Leoforos Porto Rafti. Follow this road passing Carrefour, an Avin petrol station and Pet City. Look out for a sign for Vravrona, where you turn left. There is a building with a sign Istikabel on this corner. You are now on Leoforos Vravronas. Continue till you see a sign for Artemis and turn left here. Look out for a small white building on your left with a green door, then a wooden hut with blue window shutters on your right, then a shrine. There is a wooden fence here, a yellow sign forbidding hunting and an information board; take the track beside the fence and you will reach the starting point of the walk at a large car park. If you get to the entrance of the Mare Nostrum Hotel on your right, you have gone too far. Turn back!

From the southern suburbs: Take the Vari – Koropi road and get on to the Attiki Odos (no toll here) in the direction of Markopoulo and then follow directions above.

By public transport: Catch the 304 bus for Vravrona from the Nomismatokopeio Metro Station to the terminus at Vravrona. The terminus is beside a souvenir shop. Walk up the road for 100 metres and cross over to the entrance of the Mare Nostrum Hotel. Take the path down at the side of the entrance to the hotel. At the bottom, turn right and the starting point for the walk is just a couple of minutes along this track.

After the walk, we will eat in the Artemis Taverna, where we have left the cars.