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Hiking routes in Kassandra peninsula

hiking-kassandra-halkidiki

Hiking – Trekking in Kassandra Halkidiki

The following walking paths were created few years ago by the Halkidiki Hotel Association, financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) with the cooperation of the Greek National Tourism Organization, in an effort to facilitate our visitors to enjoy our rich flora and fauna.

The walks vary in length and difficulty, so as to cover the needs of visitors of all ages and physical condition.

Good footwear is necessary for all of the paths. In most situations strong shoes or trainers will suffice.

When wet, however, summer walking boots are recommended, particularly for one or two of the longer paths, and those that involve some rock scrambling.

1. Sani – Sani Bird Sanctuary – Sani

hiking-kassandra-route-1An easy walk through the woods, which skirt the long and beautiful, Sani beach, with views across the wetlands of the Sani Bird Sanctuary (2h. 30m.).

The hill of the tower of Stavronikita lies immediately to the west of the Sani Beach Holiday Resort.

In the time of the Ancient Creeks there were two cities in the area. Sani, the most important, developed from the prehistoric settlement in the area of the tower. The old city of Sani now lies under the sea.

A bird sanctuary has been created in If the wetlands to the east of the woodlands which skirt Sani Beach and a colony of turtles live in a small pond adjacent to the gates of the agricultural prison; which lies to the east of the wetlands. Tortoises are often seen in the woods.


2. Sani – Sani Camping – Siviri

hiking-kassandra-route-2This walk can be started from either end but the description here is from Porto Sani Village to Siviri. It will be necessary to organize transport for your return, unless you intend to retrace your Steps (20km).

The path follows a well-marked woodland path, which meanders along the cliff tops between Sani Beach Holiday Resort and Siviri ; Sani Camping is passed, half way between Sani Beach Holiday Resort and Siviri.

People wishing a shorter walk could finish at Sani Camping. Because of the nature of the path, care must be taken, particularly with people who may suffer from vertigo, very young children and dogs.
Lizards, birds and butterflies abound in these shady woods, depending on the season. This is one of the most beautiful walks in Halkidiki and should not be missed.


3. Posidi – Pinewoods – Posidi

hiking-kassandra-route-3An easy, circular, ridge walk in the pinewoods above the Posidi beach, which provides beautiful views of the coast as well as the olive grove, covered valley Inland, towards Kalandra. The path follows forest tracks for most of the way.

Time needed: 2 hours

The start and finish of the walk is from the coast road 300m south of the Posidi Holidays Hotel. There is ample parking on open ground just past the hotel, if the road at the Start is too busy to park there.

14th Century documents in Mt Athos mention Posidi, but as the name relates to the worship of Poseidon, the god of the sea, it was probably named in much earlier times.


4. Polihrono – Turtles – Polihrono

hiking-kassandra-route-4This walk takes one up into the hills behind Polihrono to visit a pond in the woods where turtles are found (Mavrobara lake). The path follows broad forest tracks, passing through a high valley, surrounded by sandstone cliffs and pine forest. The return path, gives many fine views of the sea and coast as it gradually descends, through the trees, to Polihrono.

These pinewoods contain many large trees, often reaching up towards the light from the bottoms of deep gorges, which are covered with dense undergrowth. This provides a fine habitat for birds, small mammals and insects. Tortoises and lizards are often encountered as well as the turtles. Depending on the season, the more open ground can be a mass of colour, with its flowers, shrubs and butterflies.


5. Kriopihi – Kasandrino – Kriopigi

hiking-kassandra-route-5This walk, which is quite long, takes one via forest tracks to the beautiful little village of Kasandrino, hidden away in the hills of Kassandra. This unspoilt Creek village is a delight to visit. The return path to Kriopigi also uses forest tracks that take one through the more remote parts of this peninsula.

The walk begins beside the church in Kriopigi. On entering the village from the north turn right into the old village immediately after passing under the second set of flashing amber traffic Signals.

From the church take the concrete road that leads southwest, up towards the woods. This zig zags up the hill, past houses, eventually becoming an unmade access road. From here, looking back there is a good view of the sea across to Kelyfos Island and Sithonia beyond. In 300m a junction is reached.


6. Hanioti – Fire Tower – Hanioti

hiking-kassandra-route-6This path takes one from Hanioti on the east coast of Kassandra up onto the long ridge, which is the backbone of the peninsula. It then follows this ridge north to the fire lookout tower, situated at one of the highest points on the ridge, before descending again to Hanioti.

The climb follows goat tracks up a minor ridge from Hanioti to reach the main ridge, which gives expansive views in all directions of the surrounding terrain. A wide forest track is followed along the middle section revealing fine views of Skioni and the western coastline and, on the descent to Hanioti, the eastern coast lies before us.

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