The Great National Parks of Northern Greece (7 days)

Steep slopes, ever-green conifers, stone houses with slate and slanted roofs, stolid villagers in traditional clothing speaking a Latin-based language -- if this is true, you must be in Switzerland. But no, it's the north-west part of Greece. This region is uniquely endowed with extraordinary natural beauty, vast temperate forest ecosystems, distinctive architecture, cultural wealth and the sheer romance of an ancient way of life. Deep canyons, bizarre rock formations, and gray stone and slate villages form a scenery rarely seen in the rest of the country. It seems that you are entering an enchanted kingdom. The Zagoria area is best known for its traditional villages with their stone buildings, slate roofs and cobbled paths, all constructed with local stone. The houses and churches of Kastoria are often exquisitely decorated with frescoes, painted cupboards and elaborate wooden carvings on the ceilings. The Prespes area is a natural haven for nature lovers, since it hosts a great number of birds and mammals, including some real rare ones.

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