1.022 m
12 m
30,59 km

Bisitak 42, kokapena 1

Nondik gertu Xánthi, East Macedonia and Thrace (Greece)

Very recommendable hike along old stone mule paths and dark beech forests in the foothills of the Rodopi mountains. The path is well waymarked and there is an information panel on Xanthi's central plateia (the square with the clocktower). A GPS is not even necessary, indeed the amount of waymarking done borders at times on the ridiculous.
Do bear in mind however that you quite likely won't meet anyone along the trail, except for a herd of seemingly enchanted, completely unmoved and unmoving cows and bulls in a dark forest valley, and maybe the occasional alarmed wild swine. Also be weary of a pack of sadly abandoned dogs on the outskirts of Xanthi, they are fierce and obey to no one.
What the information panels in all their touristically minded goodwill forget to mention, moreover, is that you should certainly take enough water, and preferably more than one bottle; there is only one fountain to be found along this 30km long, 30 degrees hot hike with something of 1000m up and down (see waypoint).
In the abandoned village of Kromnika - founded in 1925, deserted in the 60s: a new settlement for Christian refugees from Anatolia after the 1923 population exchange, I wonder? - there are only dry fountains, and a huge underground cistern. The information panels suggest you should end the walk here, and take a taxi back to civilisation... they even provide a list with phone numbers. This would be a particularly foolish thing to do, since the most impressive part of the hike starts afterwards, from Kromnika down to the meandering canyon of the Nestos river, intersecting the railway tracks of, among others, the Orient Express (this stretch was built between 1896 and 1906). A mesmerizingly beautiful stone path above the river leads all the way to the quietly dying village of Toxotes.
There is one hotel there (Filoxenia), but you could also take an early morning bus to Toxotes from Xanthi (http://www.ktelxanthis.gr/topika-dromologia/) and do the hike in reverse, walking back to the town. In Toxotes, trains to Thessaloniki and Alexandroupoli pass twice daily; the station looks completely abandoned but the train will stop if you wave your hand. If you go towards Thessaloniki you have the additional reward to pass through the same gorge as you just hiked before.

potistra achlada, water


station kromnikon



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