We spend a few days celebrating the new year in Kalabaka and Trikala in central Greece. They are both quite small and lovely cities. The food is very nice as they use local and fresh products, however, be careful as the touristic restaurants can be disappointing. We wanted to visit the Meteora which is a rock formation located very close to Kalabaka, where we stayed first in order to start exploring.
The view and the history of this place are unique, that's why we decided to start our tour there.
Being such a touristy place some restaurants try to take advantage of people, sometimes they exaggerate the prices on the menus, and sometimes the quality of the food is simply not good.
A general recommendation could be to start the day very early in the morning.
It can be a bit chaotic as many travelers frequent this place.
Meteora is included on the Unesco heritage list and it’s name actually means "elevated".
It hosts a very large complex of orthodox monasteries .The six monasteries (I think they were twenty four in the past ) are built on really huge rocks that it is unbelievable how people climbed on them to built. It is actually so impressive , that it feels it was made by gods!
Some monasteries are homes to nuns and others to monks. During your visit you can meet the nuns and monks, see how they live or even speak with them. The view from the top of the monasteries is unique!
Next stop is Trikala, a well organised city with a small river crossing in it . A walk by the river is lovely. Even though it is located in the city you can still have some relaxing time during your walk. There are so many cafe bars in the town that you can have a coffee or any drink or , if you are strong enough , even try the local tsipouro which is very strong drink served in little shot glasses ! Tsipouro goes nicely with food but thats not a problem as there are so many tavernas that you can have lovely traditional food. In Trikala there is also a big Xmas park called «the mill of the elves» . The inspiration of this place is that Santa Claus after visiting the kids to give them their presents , he brought back with him memories and images from the places he visited and used them to decorate the Mill. You can see information from the different countries that Santa Claus visited on his travels, from all around the world. There are some free activities to enjoy like visiting santas house ,the elves flour mill, the Chocolate Factory , the Mushroom Museum and a lot more ! There is also an ice skating rink , the Xmas market , the sweet market that you can try so many different kind of sweets and a fun park. It’s a very nice experience especially around this time of the year!
Q & A
What would you have changed?
Add one more day to explore Trikala a bit more
Anything go wrong during the trip?
There was so much snow that we could not visit one more city that we wanted
Tips you would give a friend?
Check the reviews of the restaurants to avoid going to the touristic ones