Monopatia (Μονοπατια)

These ancient pathways zigzag all over the island and feature in each and every one of our intermediate and advanced MTB rides, we are continually discovering new ones and adding them to our routes.

Long before tourism featured in Lefkada, mountain village life was thriving, the rich agricultural landscape of the mountains made it a much more appealing home for the majority of the population. That said, families would walk down the mountains on a daily basis during harvest time to the olive groves that form the backdrop against the now popular resort of Nidri. These monopatia are steeped in history and along the way you stumble across abandoned stone cottages where families would live all in one room and open their doors to distant relatives for days, weeks or months at a time. You can see first hand the diet these families lived on – fruit trees with figs, sharon fruit (persimmon) and loganberries, not to mention the terraced areas where vegetables once grew. Post-war and the increased use of transportation meant many of these paths were sadly abandoned. Thankfully Lefkada is clinging on to its traditions and some monopatia are still used by shepherds and other active walking and trail running groups on the island. Together we are trying to keep these pathways alive!

Today Simon A and I walked one of our newest and probably most significant trails and cleared and enhanced the route. This particular monopati starts at the foot of Nidri waterfalls and climbs up to the Sfaedes Springs. We experienced a monsterous thunderstorm this morning and as a result all along the path we heard the sound of gushing water and the wonderful aroma of sage and mint. My role for Get Active involves sitting behind the computer taking bookings and working on promotion and although I spend many hours outdoors with our energetic young boys and being actively involved in village life, I feel reinvigorated from walking these trails that Simon A and Simon T get to ride all summer long! How lucky we are to live in such a place and how lucky our MTB customers and friends are that get to experience all this too, a side to Greece only for the active traveller, active in body and mind!

Lucy

 

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