Fonissa is a stream that forms a deep gorge from Vrysoules village to Loutro, in the municipality of Xylokatsro-Evrostini. In antiquity the stream was the natural borders of ancient Pellene, called Krios (ram). The name “fonissa” (female murderer) highlights how dangerous it is to be in its way when it is full of water.
The only way to access the gorge is to follow the road from Kato Loutro village towards the monastery of Korfiotissa. Just before the monastery, turn left to the track descending to the stream. In every crossroad, turn in the direction of the antenna on the opposite hill. The track ends at the stream. Once at the dam, take the track that leads to Kato Loutro village.
It consists of a small yet impressive gorge that offers a trekking route of 10km. It is formed at the point where river that starts from Korfiotissa, is interrupted by a large limestone hill for 1.5 km before it reaches the Cornthian gulf. At some points it gets really narrow, acquiring the characteristics of a cave. It has an average width of 2-3 meters and has limestone hillsides.
Fonissa gorge was first made safe in 1984 by Spiros Apostolopoulos and Aris Theodoropoulos. Many other teams have continued the work ever since rendering the gorge safe and accessible. During the spring, water flows in the gorge, while the first narrow point is formed after the entrance. For almost one km (800m) the light gets scarce and the open points are few. The gorge offers 5 technical descendings, the biggest being 18m, and just before the exit the light appears again. Although equipment is required throughout the route, we can walk along it.
Fonissa offers 5 technical descendings, 250m difference in altitude, and 1.5km of length. A four member group requires three hours to cross it.
A very impressive gorge, which starts from the village of Kallithea. It has running water throughout the year, thereby creating small natural pools. Divided into two sections, the first 1.5 km in length, with 5 small descents; and the second (more interesting), in which over 800 meters length there are 21 descents. Its beauty is well-appreciated by daring excursioners, many of them coming from Athens due to its close distance.
There is a large number of trails throughout the protected area of Chelmos-Vouraikos National Park. The most well know is part of the E4 European long distance path that cuts through the protected area.
In the Peloponnese, the trail passes Diakopto, runs through the Vouraikos Gorge, following the Rack Railway tracks Diakopto-Kalavryta, passes by the historic city of Kalavryta, the beautiful Cave of the Lakes, the cool springs Aroanios River and Ladon River.
Diakopto, is a small and beautiful coastal city, where you can come by car or bus from Athens (160 km-99.4 mi) or from Patras (54 km-33.5 mi) through the National Road of Athens-Patras.
During the hiking journey of the Vouraikos Gorge part of E4 Trail one can admire the waterfalls, streams and caves with stalactites and stalagmites. The most beautiful and geological interesting parts of the gorge are the positions «Niamata», «Portes», «Triklia», «Sifoni» and «Dikastiria».
Mountainous Corinthia offers many enjoyable hiking trails to nature lovers and hikers.
One of the most beautiful trails is the path Varnevo – Flabouritsa. The trail starts at the 6th km. Of the road Trikala – Zireia and descends to the ravine Flabouritsa.
The path to the flora, the amazing habitat Valley Flabouritsa will amaze you until you reach the meadows of sources of Sythas.
In the region of Ziria, on the west side of Flabouritsa at an altitude of 1.700m is the Cave of Hermes.
In the depths of the cave, according to mythology, Hermes was born. Hermes was the son of Zeus and Maia. Maia was one of the seven Pleiades, daughter of Atlas and Pleione.
This is a downward cave, millions years old, the descent of which requires special equipment. It is approximately 1.200sqm and has several successive chambers with a rich decoration of bulky complexes of stalactites-stalagmites, which indicate its age. Important is the presence of bats on the inside of the cave, including some endangered species.
There grew the mythical grass Moli, with its magical properties, which Hermes gave to Odysseus to keep him protected against the magic spells of Circe.
We start from St. Vlasis Monasteri at Ano Trikala. We shall visit the ancient cave of Hermes, where the Apples of Hesperides were kept, and we cross the Flabouritsa Gorge full of pines and waters!
After passing the picturesque villages of Moshia , Messino and Ancient Feneo (Kalyvia) we see the beautiful lake Doxa . The small but beautiful lake is located at an altitude of 890 meters, in the middle of an area full of verdant firs, pines and oaks. It was created in 1998 after the construction of a dam that holded the water of the mountainous river Doxa. In the heart of the lake on a small peninsula stands the chapel of St. Fanourios or Palaiomonastiro.
Lake Doxa is the starting point of our hiking trip.
From this point a marked dirty road begins, which leads to a short path. We walk on a rural road where after 2 km we reach a dam. From the dam an uphill path starts which passes through an amazing forest of firs and pines, while the view to the lake is breathtaking. The trail ends up to the narrow passage between Ntourntouvana and the ridge of Helmos, known as Kinigos. We are now at an altitude of 1,550 m.
We now have enough choices. We can follow the road Lake Doxa – Planitero and go back to the lake or alternatively to the lakeside village Panorama. By following a route to the north of Kinigos we can ascend to the top of the nearest peak of Helmos, the Nisi peak (2,040 m) and to follow the same route for the return.
Corinthia wine roads pass through the vineyards of the unique PDO Nemea wine-producing zone. They are your best bet if you wish to discover the wine tradition of the area, visit lowland and highland vineyards and enjoy the beautiful scenery and sights of Corinthia.
The options for wine tourism along the wine roads of Corinthia are countless. Your winery tour can be combined with a visit at the renowned archaeological site of Nemea, which is surrounded by vineyards. You will love the picture-perfect villages and the natural treasures, such as Lake Stymfalia, Feneos plain and the area around Asopos river- it’s the perfect chance to unwind in the magic of nature. The local delicacies and the options for relaxing accommodation are an additional plus to your wine tourism plans along the wine roads of Corinthia.