Greece’s marvellous mainland! From the pristine beaches of Syvota to the charming port of Preveza and picturesque Parga, why you should holiday in the Epirus region
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Booking a dream getaway that ticks all the boxes is more important than ever now.
And while Greece’s islands offer an escape unlike anywhere else in the world, its marvellous mainland offers pristine shores, lush greenery and astounding architecture in abundance too.
Preveza, Parga and Syvota, in the coastal Epirus region of northwestern Greece, is where you’ll find wild valleys, alpine lakes, luscious landscapes and turquoise waters – not to mention first-class cuisines and beautiful beaches.
Here’s why these three fabulous destinations should top your holiday wishlist.
Escape to Preveza
Whether you want to relax on a breathtaking beach and indulge in incredible local cuisine, or explore ancient monuments and scenic hiking trails, Preveza is a dream destination.
As the sun goes down, why not enjoy a tsipouro at one of the waterfront bars in Preveza?
This seaside town is perched on the edge of the Ambracian Gulf in the northwest, and is filled with traditional taverns, awesome architecture and stretches of idyllic white sand.
The city of Preveza is also accessible from Epirus by Greece’s first undersea tunnel.
Explore the history and culture of its chilled-out harbour town, which was built close to the site of Vereniki town in 290BC.
Stroll its pretty streets, taking in the magnificent Byzantine and Venetian architecture, then visit the remains of one of the most important cities in the Roman Empire, Nikopolis, as well as the ancient site of Kassiopi.
Head to the 19th-century Pantokratoras Castle, found at the mouth of Amvrakikos Gulf, at dusk, for spellbinding views.
For a day trip, you will enjoy the beautiful Venetian castles, Preveza’s ‘big Ben’ the Roloi, and historic fortresses and museums.
The Roman aqueduct of ancient Nikopolis was built to supply the town with water in 1BC
Preveza is also the perfect place for nature lovers. Choose from 12 hiking routes through lush mountains and sparkling rivers – also ideal for kayaking and swimming. Hop in a boat for a scenic tour – you might just spot dolphins!
The village of Anogeion is where you’ll find hot springs, ideal for a chilled-out afternoon.
Then, at dusk, dine on Preveza’s famous pita bread and savoury pies or sip on local tsipouro, accompanied by a traditional mezze platter, along the picturesque waterfront boulevard Venizelou.
With beaches stretching for 40 miles, Preveza is perfect for whiling away days next to the ocean.
With fine sand and turquoise water, 15-mile-long Monolithi, the largest sandy beach in Europe, and the one named safest post-Covid beach in Europe, is a must-visit. You’ll find secluded spots, watersports, and tavernas selling fresh fish dishes.
Isolated Ai Sostis is where to escape, and splash around in its crystal-clear water then soak up the rays on its white sand; Alonaki is perfect for snorkelling; while Kanali is one of the longest beaches in Greece.
Paradise in Parga
The stunning coastal town of Parga, on Greece’s northwest coast, is brimming with pine-forest mountains, Venetian monuments, and pretty olive groves.
With its winding cobbled hills and lanes, the main town is where to find breathtaking architecture, quaint shops selling handmade souvenirs, as well as cosy cafes and tavernas.
The coastal town of Parga has it all, from beaches and mountains to architecture and bars
Stroll the scenic trail up the dramatic cliffs to the 11th-century fortress that, overlooking the bay, is the perfect place for photos of the twinkling harbour.
Then head down the tiny staircases to the colourful, picture-perfect harbour town to refuel at one of its busy waterside bars.
Explore the traditional costumes and learn about the area’s fascinating history at the Ecclesiastical Museum of Parga.
Parga boasts plenty of options for day trips. From its busy harbour, book a boat excursion to the Ionian Islands to discover former palaces, superb architecture and incredible beaches.
Further south is where to find the important archaeological site Necromanteion of Acheron, the historical site of the Temple of Hades. This should top your list, and you can stroll in the river to spot medieval castles, hilltop villages and secluded beaches.
Fancy a spot of diving? Parga’s paradisiacal shores are waiting to be explored, teeming with underwater life.
Head to sandy Krioneri beach, where you’ll find sunbeds and cafes, to swim across to the small island of Panagia.
Valtos beach, a beautiful stretch of sand and pebbles backed by a picturesque pine forest, has a cosmopolitan vibe, while you can explore sea caves at idyllic forest-lined Lichnos beach.
Narrow inlets, secret coves and lush islands, the picturesque bay of Syvota is only 15 miles from Parga and is lined with traditional tavernas, luxurious yachts and cute fishing boats.
With its pristine shores, it’s easy to see why the excotic region has been nicknamed the Caribbean of Greece, with plenty of wonderful beaches to explore.
The pristine sand and turquoise waters of the Epirus region are a major draw for visitors
The jewel of the region, tree-lined Mega Ammos is the area’s most famous stretch, with golden sand, turquoise water, sunbeds and watersports.
Boasting soft sand and white pebbles, postcard-pretty Bella Vraka is just a 15-minute walk from the harbour – and it’s here you’ll see how the area got its nickname!
You can also discover secret coves at sun-drenched Diapori, Alati or Pisina Beach, aka the Blue Lagoon – you’ll want to spend a day at each one.
Then head to Syvota town for shopping, sightseeing, and dining on world-class cuisine.
Climb the winding steep alleyways to the historic castle – once at the top, you’ll be rewarded with stunning views of the Ionian and Valtos beach.
En route, grab some local souvenirs from the quaint shops, and have your camera ready to snap the pretty courtyards blooming with colourful flowers.
With spectacular scenery, quiet coves and sun-drenched climes, you won’t want to come home
For an easier stroll, the promenade is a must. From here, you can hop into a boat for a trip to a remote bay, dine on freshly grilled seafood in an ouzeri, or simply relax and take in the scenery.
From Syvota, you can hop in a sea taxi, or hire a boat, to the tiny island of Paxos to witness the breathtaking Blue Caves, and the imposing rock of Ortholithos.
Or hire a car to explore Syvota’s mountainous landscapes.
The city of Ioannina with the beautiful Lake Pamvotida is a short drive away, as is Vikos – the deepest gorge in the world at 6,000ft deep. The walk takes a day but there are easier options too.
You really won’t want to come home!
Discover Greece’s beautiful coastal region of Epirus for yourself – click here for more info.
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