The Acheron River
The Acheron River is a place of unique beauty and immense tranquility. It deserves at least one whole day to discover and admire, especially if you are a lover of natural beauty. In the mountains of Souli, at an altitude of 1,600 meters, just 2 km from the village of Glyki, you can find the springs of the Acheron River and the starting point of the journey we suggest to the mythological Gates of the ancient Hades.
Legend of the Acheron River
According to legend, there was once a monster, a Dragon, that lived in the sources of the Acheron River in Glyki and poisoned the river’s water, making it deadly for people and animals in the area. Saint Donatus killed the dragon, and since then, the river waters have become sweet, hence the name Glyki (sweet) for the village of the same name.
First Hiking Route
From this small village, you can enjoy a walk through two paths that cross the riparian forest of plane trees. One starts from the Glyki Information Center and leads to Skala Tzavelena. Following the famous path that the Souliotes used during the Ottoman domination, descend the green slope to the river bank. Visit the Byzantine temple, which is now in ruins, and spend some time at the Dragon Cave, the point where the springs gush. The route is wonderful, and the view will surely amaze even the most disinterested person. The landscape offers wild, stunning vegetation, crystal clear waters, reeds, ferns, plane trees, and small waterfalls, creating a miraculous scene.
Second Hiking Route
The second hiking route is even more impressive. It starts from the location of Skala Tzavelena and ends at the Souli Plateau (village of Samonia). The scenic path follows the Acheron Straits along their entire length, parallel to the river. Along the way, you will see the imposing gorge of the Acheron, known as the “Gates of Hades.” You will be enchanted by the wonderful changes in the landscape. The impressive “Dala” bridge is also on your way. Make sure to take photos. The hiking trip lasts for 4 hours.
Natura 2000 Network
The river is protected by the Natura 2000 Network. Many species of insects, small animals, and rare plants can be found along its banks.
The Acheron River offers opportunities for various sports. You can try horse riding along the river, experience rafting, kayaking, and canoeing, even if you haven’t tried river water sports before. The river is easy to navigate and does not require any special knowledge. Finally, if you are adventurous and not afraid of cold waters, you can swim safely and enjoy the crystal-clear waters of the river.