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Olympus is the highest mountain in Greece worldwide known, mostly for its mythological background. According to the Ancient Greek’s religion, the twelve Olympian Gods used to reside in Mitikas, its highest peak (2.918m). Moreover, Olympus is the second highest mountain in the Balkans (following Rila in Bulgaria) but also in the whole European region situated between the Alps and Caucasus. Its solid mountain volume stands impressive in the borders of Macedonia and Thessaly and in its range of high peaks, deep ridges are formed around which an area of intense biodiversity extends. To protect this unique legacy, it was established, in 1938, as the first National Park of Greece.

Hiking Routes

Undoubtedly, Olympus is the most popular mountain of Greece. Its impressive height, mythical appeal and easy access constitute it as an attraction for thousands of visitors from all the corners of the world. The paths and trails crossing the mountain, a network neatly preserved in its most part, give both the experienced hiker and the visitor who lacks in special mountaineering interests or knowledge, the chance to meet, at first hand, Olympus, the diversity in its flora and fauna and its natural beauty. The most important path is the European long-distance path E4 that leads west from Litochoro towards the peaks, through Enippeas’ canyon. Also, there is the national path 02 that connects the peaks to the south with Pilio. In many spots designated seating areas can be found where the walker can have a moment for relaxation and contemplation. The Forest Service (Pieria Prefecture of Forest Administration )have placed informative signs with the map of the National Park and some useful instructions on. If time is not an issue, then visitors can ideally climb to the summit from the second route and descend following the first one while staying over the mountain’s shelters.

The Castle

The Castle of Platamonas is a castle of the period known as Frankokratia or Latinokratia and was built in the place of a fortified city of the Middle Byzantine Period. Southeast of Olympus and at cloze distance from the modern settlement of Platamonas, its location is strategic as it controls the road connecting Macedonia with Thessaly and South Greece. It is the best preserved castle in northern-central Greece and its imposing central tower stands magnificent over the National Road.