A cornucopia of colours in River Lithaios, Trikala

A history stretching back centuries and a thoroughly modern European swagger.

Here in the homeland of the iconic doctor of antiquity, Asclepius, a veritable treasure trove of cultural attractions await you.

That perfect selfie with a jaw-dropping panorama in the frame may be all the encouragement you need to make the climb to the town’s medieval fortress. However, once at the top you cannot help but be bowled over by the aura of the building itself. The clock tower in the east, stubbornly defiant in the face of a considerable pummeling over the centuries, now makes a more sedate vantage point from which to enjoy beautiful sunsets.

A leisurely stroll around the town reveals the ornate architectural style of the famed stately homes, as well as the older churches in the districts of Varousi and Palia Manavika, all commanding your undivided attention. And should you work up an appetite, the surrounding taverns and café-bars are a tempting proposition. From the heart of this verdant landscape, emerges a remarkable industrial monument; the Matsopoulos Park and Mill, the first flour and pasta producing factory in Greece. An imposing stone-clad structure, it will take you on a trip back to the days when mechanized production was taking its first tentative steps. Just as you are dreaming of a couple of centuries ago, you will come across a reminder of Greece’s ancient past at the Trikala Asclepeion. The next stop is Koursoum Mosque, a source of inspiration as one of the best preserved mosques on Greek soil. Finally, the “Kliafa” Centre of History and Culture guarantees a front row seat for a dazzling display of exhibits.

Nature combined with the urban landscape
Whether you have a romantic rendezvous or a quiet walk with a view of the Lithaios River in mind, the pedestrianized Bridge of Trikala is a cherished spot. The “green jungle” on the hill of Prophetes Helias is a surprise sweetened by the fact that it is so close to the city, while in the neighbouring zoo you will get nature with an exotic spin as kangaroos, lamas and deer lead the line-up!

Gastronomy & Local products
The inhabitants of Trikala are well known for their eclectic palates!  Here Feta, the queen of white cheeses, rules alongside other delights of the dairy; yoghurt, galotyri and mizithra – both cheeses made mostly of sheep’s milk. In a town with a long tradition for rearing livestock, it comes as no surprise that the Trikala sausage is reputed for its sublime taste, further enhanced by herbs and spices from nearby Mount Koziakas and then washed down by a drop of quality wine or tsipouro.

Nearby destinations
With Trikala as your base, there are plenty of sights to keep you fascinated in the surrounding area. Not least of which is Meteora, where giant slabs of granite shoot bolt upright from the ground. A wonderful, surreal spectacle in itself, but when you realize each is crowned by a monastery, you’ll certainly begin to doubt your senses. How did the rocks form in this way? How were the monasteries built in such a precarious position? Surely, a little divine intervention? Meteora is also a first choice for hikers and abseilers who want to take on the challenge of this beguiling landscape.

Once you’ve got your breath back from Meteora, a visit to the newly established Museum of Natural History and the utterly unique Museum of Mushrooms in Kalambaka is essential. Naturally, this includes a mushroom hunt in the forest, followed by some invaluable cooking tips.

Elati, Pertouli, Pyli, Neraidohori
Of course, in Elati, named after the Greek word for fir tree, you can expect nothing less than a majestic alpine landscape. Mere minutes away is picturesque Pertouli, with idyllic scenes of red stone roofs and horses roaming freely in the meadows, as well as the villages of Pyli and Neraidohori, waiting to reveal their charms.

An ideal all year round destination, Trikala guarantees a medley of authentic experiences. European spirit in the heart of the Greek countryside- to satisfy even the most “restless” of travellers.