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The 15 Best Hikes In Athens

29 October, 2021by Bounce

Greece is an absolute mecca for serious and not-so-serious hikers with its rolling hills and sharp mountain inclines. The areas surrounding Athens have some of the most breathtaking views and trails in the country, making hiking very interesting.

You can even catch a ferry or boat to the smaller islands for the scenic, beautiful walking footpaths that wind down along the water and inland over picturesque hills. Bring along a pack with water, snacks, and a first aid kit and spend the day exploring the scenic natural routes around Athens.

There are some pretty wonderful walkways that are inside Athens for those not looking to commune with nature but still enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. No matter if you are hiking through national parks, along beaches, or down city sidewalks, you will truly enjoy your time here.

Do you need help navigating your way from the city to start your trek to all the way to the summit? Read our guide on how to get around Athens!

Our Top Hiking Trail Picks in Athens

There are so many fantastic hiking options in and around Athens. You may be a bit overwhelmed when trying to decide which pathways to tackle when you are in the area. We have compiled a list of the top 15 hiking trails in Athens to help you pick one or two, or maybe even more to try. Before you start, leave heavy bags and gear at an Athens luggage storage spot. Grab some water and a snack and set out!

Fyli Fortress Hike

  • Difficulty: Moderate

  • Length: 9 miles

  • Location: Near Fyli in Western Parnitha

 You can easily take the train from Stathmos Larisas and disembark at Ano Liosia and then board bus number 723 in Ano Liosia to Fyli. You will begin your trek in the small town of Fyli and make your way through lush greenery in the Valley of Theodora up to the Fortress of Fyli.

The Fortress of Fyli is an ancient fortress in Attica and one of the most impressive in Greece. This circular course is not overly difficult but does have some steep inclines and river crossings that make it challenging, especially when the lower parts of Theodora Valley have seen much rain.

Agios Georgios Keramidiou Hike

  •  Difficulty: Easy/Moderate

  • Length: 6-8 miles

  • Location: Mount Parnitha

A relatively new path, the Agios Georgios Keramidiou Hike has become a favorite for local hikers. You will begin in Amygdaleza near the Agia Paraskevi Monastery. As you climb upwards you will pass the charming Agios Georgios Chapel and continue through the Platanaki Gorge.

While the hike is mostly an easy jaunt through the woods, there is a pretty steep climb up part of Mount Parnitha that could be difficult for some. The path is about 5km each way making it a 10km hike, but there are other trails that connect to it and you can continue on one of those for a longer walk.

Pan’s Cave Hike

  • Difficulty: Moderate

  • Length: 9 miles

  • Location: Near Fyli in Western Parnitha

The Pan’s Cave Trail is another fantastic trail that begins near Fyli. You will make your way through the wilderness to the Cave of Pan which was used by ancient worshippers to honor the God of Wild. As you walk you will climb to the top of a few cliffs looking down on the Goura Valley.

As you leave the main route and make your way to the cave, the trail does become rather rough and rocky. While this is a popular area for rock climbers, there are not very many who actually come to hike the area. This means it is a great place if you are looking for peace and solitude.

Mpafi and Flabouri Refuge Hike

  • Difficulty: Moderate/Difficult

  • Length: 8.5 miles

  • Location: Near Thrakomakedones near Eastern Parnitha

 It is simple to reach the trailhead; just head to the Kifisia Metro Station in Athens and hop on bus number 504 to Thrakomakedones. This is one of the busiest trails at Mount Parnitha for both locals and tourists. You can even grab a bite to eat at one of the mountain huts during your walk.

This is a more moderate to sometimes difficult trek as you climb up the side of the mountain. You will pass through the Houni Gorge and through the woods and head towards the Flabouri Ridge. The path then circles back to Thrakomakedones. There is a steep descent that can be tricky.

Oinoi Gorge and Lake Marathon Hike

  • Difficulty: Easy/Moderate

  • Length: 9 miles

  • Location: In Marathon

When you are looking for different, but still breathtaking, views of Greece, head to Marathon and take on the Oinoi Gorge and Lake Marathon trail. Filled with gently sloping fields, orchards, and ravines overflowing with local vegetation, you will think you have truly found paradise.

Follow the Oinoi Gorge that will lead you to Lake Marathon, a man-made lake that is a popular spot for the locals to visit. As you stroll along the path, you will pass the medieval Oinoi Tower, ancient quarries, and the remains of Roman baths. It is a marvelous place to visit.

Agia Marina Church Hike

  • Difficulty: Moderate/Difficult

  • Length: 11 miles

  • Location: Near Avlona in Northern Parnitha

While most of this hike is flat, there are a few steep inclines to keep your heart pumping and your lungs working. As you make your way, you will pass the quaint church of Agia Marina on the northern ridge of Mount Parnitha. This darling little church is a must-see when walking.

The trail itself is a mix of rocky paths, dirt walkways, and the occasional asphalt road. It is generally a moderate hike but can be difficult for those not used to higher elevations or finding their way through the Greek forests.

Sounio National Park Crossing

  • Difficulty: Easy/Moderate

  • Length: 7 miles

  • Location: Inside the Sounio National Park; hike takes you from Sounio to Lavrio

This small, but well-known park is best known for the Temple of Poseidon which sits on a cliff overlooking the Aegean Sea. Sounio National Park is actually the smallest national park in Greece and you can easily explore it all in one day.

While there are no official trail markers, it is relatively easy to decipher where the trail is and where it leads. You will navigate your way through the charming Lavreotiki countryside across rolling hills and past adorable chapels and the ruins of several Greek mining camps.

Trypia Cave and Stavros Pass

  • Difficulty: Easy

  • Length: 4 miles

  • Location: Near Glyfada in Southern Hymettus

Head to the seaside town of Glyfada and enjoy some of the most picturesque views in all of Greece. Several of the trails are located on Mount Hymettus’s southern side and the Trypia Cave and Stavros Pass hike is one of the best.

This peaceful hike is filled with beautiful landscapes and amazing rock formations. Take a breather along the way and look out over the sea. This is a pretty easy walk and only has a few steeper inclines as you head up onto Mount Hymettus.

Kaisariani Monastery and Forest Hike

  •  Difficulty: Easy

  • Length: Unknown

  • Location: Western Hymettus

Head to the western side of Mount Hymettus to visit the Kaisariani Monastery and Cemetery. After enjoying a brief history lesson about the area, you can head out into the surrounding forest and escape the business of the city for a few hours.

While there are no set walkways through the forest, you will find it easy to follow well-worn paths that other hikers have taken through the years. You are able to walk as long and as far as you would like. Pack a bag with snacks, water, and a first aid kit, and then set out for a day in the woods.

Mount Pentelicus Crossing

  • Difficulty: Easy/Moderate

  • Length: 6 miles

  • Location: Mount Pentelicus

 

While Mount Pentelicus has seen some pretty rough days of mining and looks bare from a distance, once you reach the mountain it is actually quite pretty. Follow the trail that leads from Dionysos to Old Penteli for a variety of different terrains and views and easy walks.

The prettiest part of your hike will be as you climb above Dionysos and stroll through a beautiful pine forest and three charming chapels that are hidden among the trees. The trail does zigzag over rougher terrain as you descend to Old Penteli and past ancient quarries. If you are a lover of days gone past, be sure to take a day to explore Athens' museums!

Mount Parnitha Loop

  • Difficulty: Moderate/Difficult

  • Length: 6.5 mile loop

  • Location: Near Acharnes in the Mount Parnitha National Park

It is relatively easy to reach Mount Parnitha. Just hop on the cable car; it is free to ride. As you ride the cable car, you will have unobstructed views of the mountain and surrounding area. There are several different paths to take, all that lead to the same spot.

 Grab a trail map at the park office and head out into the Mount Parnitha National Park for a day of exploring nature and breathing in the fresh air. The Mount Parnitha loop is a fantastic pathway and is used by hikers and birdwatchers.

Palamidi Castle Hike

  • Difficulty: Moderate/Difficult

  • Length: 1.8 mile loop

  • Location: Nafplio in Peloponnese

You will have to go up about 1,000 steps to get to the Palamidi Castle, however, you will want to take your time and look out over the breathtaking seaside town of Nafplio. Nafplio is in Peloponnese and is about two hours from Athens but has amazing hiking trails.

The Palamidi Castle hike is a loop that is just under two miles and is great for hiking year-round. When you reach the top of the steps, you can pay a small fee and go inside the castle for a quick look around before heading back to Nafplio.

Mount Lycabettus Hike

  • Difficulty: Easy                

  • Length: 0.9 mile

  • Location: Mount Lycabettus near Athens

Mount Lycabettus can easily be seen from the rooftops of Athens and is a relatively easy hike for most people. You will meander along a modest incline to about 984 feet above sea level. Once you reach the peak, visit the restaurant, chapel, and theater located there.

Locals and tourists love the Mount Lycabettus hike for its natural beauty and easy stroll as well as the restaurant at the top for a delicious meal before heading back down again. During the spring and summer, the wildflowers along the trail are vibrant and magnificent.

Pelion

  • Difficulty: Moderate/Difficult

  • Length: 6.5 miles

  • Location: Near Agios Dimitrios Piliou in Thessaly

The Pelion hiking trail can become crowded, especially during April through October when the scenic views are bursting with vibrant colors from the trees and foliage along the trail. The Pelion peninsula is located about halfway between Thessaloniki and Athens.

It is filled with kalderimis, or old, rutted mule paths, that connect one village to another. Today, there are clear walking paths and signage to follow to make sure you do not get lost. This trail is great for any skill level, especially those looking for a quick stroll through the vegetation.

The Menalon Trail

  • Difficulty: Moderate/Difficult

  • Length: 47miles

  • Location: near Gortynia in Peloponnese

This mountain path is a total of 47 miles long and has such a diverse landscape you will want to eventually hike the entire length. Begin your journey in Gortynia in the Peloponnese region and continues through several villages including Dimitsana, Nymfasia, and Elati and past historic monasteries.

You will cross several canyons, rivers, mountains, valleys, and forests as you make your way through the Menalon Trail. The trail is divided into eight parts making it easy to pick and choose where you want to walk. Each part varies in length and difficulty so pick the one or ones that are best suited for you.

Easy Hikes In Athens

Whether you are just looking for a picturesque stroll through nature or you are just not physically able to tackle harder pathways, there are several great, easy hikes in Athens. Lace up your boots, check your pack, and start on an easy journey through the trails in Athens. Check out these easy hikes in Athens and bring the whole family along.

  • Mount Lycabettus

  • Kaisariani Monastery and Forest Hike

  • Trypia Cave and Stavros Pass

  • Oinoi Gorge and Lake Marathon Hike

Intermediate Hikes In Athens

For those looking for searching for a bit more difficult hike in Athens, look no further than these fantastic paths; some will lead you up the side of a mountain, through a national park, or into impressive caves. Grab a map and start a new adventure.

  • Mount Pentelicus Crossing

  • Sounio National Park Crossing

  • Pan’s Cave Hike

  • Agios Georgios Keramidiou Hike

Difficult Hikes In Athens

There are several amazing difficult hikes near downtown Athens for those searching for a challenging workout while being out in nature. You will definitely push yourself and stretch your endurance as you take on some of these fascinating trails near Athens.

  • The Menalon Trail

  • Pelion Trail

  • Palamidi Castle Hike

  • Mount Parnitha Loop

Time to Start Hiking in Athens

 Athens has several walkways that you can easily get to by taking public transport such as the green line metro or Athens metro. Hit the asphalt road of an easier village trail. Stroll along the beautiful coastline and enjoy an hour or an entire day of being in nature near Athens. From impressive caves to stunning views of the sea, hiking in Athens is an incredible experience!

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