Konitsa is a town of 4,000 inhabitants and it is located in the prefecture of Ioannina. It unfolds amphitheatrically at an altitude of 600 m on the slope of Mount Trapezitsa. The town is built according to the traditional style of the local architecture where the amenities of a small town are perfectly combined with the peace and tranquility of a village.
When approaching Konitsa, a few meters before your entrance, turn your gaze to the right and you will see the famous stone bridge. It is the “jewel” of the region as it is one of the tallest single-arched bridges in the Balkans. The bridge was built in 1870 by the master craftsman K. Frontzos from Pirsogianni. The scenery on the bridge is like being out of a fairy tale, surrounded by rich nature, it will leave even the most demanding visitor speechless. The path, which starts from this point, is one of the entrances to the UNESCO World Geopark “Vikos – Aoos”. It crosses the Aoos gorge and through a magical route it leads to the Stomio Monastery (1776). Returning from your walk to the Monastery of Stomio, we suggest you to make a stop and enjoy swimming in the crystal clear waters of the river during the summer months.
The incomparable, rich, natural environment inside the Aoos gorge, the Vikos gorge, the Vikos-Aoos National Park, the numerous trails for hikers and experienced climbers, the rich and dense forests, the arched bridges, the three rivers Aoos, Voidomatis, Sarantaporos and the point where they meet in the plain, compose an imposing landscape that looks like a painting.
Thanks to its geomorphology and the several different activities that it offers, the area has established itself as a center of alternative tourism. After all, Konitsa is considered to be “the city of kayaking” and one can enjoy this favorite sport all year round. Try kayaking and rafting in Aoos and Voidomatis. The two rivers offer strong thrills to beginners and the most experienced ones of the sport. If you prefer swimming, then swimming in the crystal clear waters of the rivers is an unforgettable experience. If you want to get closer to nature, then mountain biking, paragliding, mountain climbing, rock climbing, as well as off-roading with 4×4 vehicles and Enduro and Motocross motorcycles are some of the activities you can enjoy all year round.
For hikers and lovers of mountain climbing, climbing the mountains of Smolikas, Grammos and Tymfi should be at the heart of their choices. “Drakolimnes” (= dragon lakes) are an immersive experience with their amazing beauty and the myths that exist about them. Don’t miss walking in the Voidomatis gorge (within the core of the Vikos-Aoos National Park) and from the Aoos gorge to the Monastery of Stomio. Another route that you should take advantage of is the nearby climb to Agios Athanasios and Prophet Elias (especially at dusk) where you can gaze at Konitsa, its rivers and its plain. And if you are a fan of winter sports, enjoy skiing and snowboarding at the Vasilitsa Ski Resort or alpine skiing in the surrounding mountains.
Inside the town of Konitsa, strolling along the uphill cobblestones and the cobbled alleys of the Upper town, you will be enchanted by the impressive mansions, the traditional stone houses and the stone-built churches. In fact, Upper Konitsa has been designated a traditional settlement by presidential decree.
Follow the route of artistic interest and admire the sculptures created by well-known sculptors during the Sculpture Symposium organized by our Municipality in 1995 with the aim of honoring the “Pelekanous”, the old stone craftsmen of our Municipality.
Going down to the new town (in the lower part of Konitsa) you will see the mosque of Suleiman the Magnificent where the towering minaret, built in 1536, is preserved. Next to it, the Muslim school is preserved where there is a photographic exhibition and you can get to know the history and monuments of the area. The visit to the New Wine and Vine Museum will introduce you to the secrets of Viticulture and wine production.
Konitsa is also considered to be a destination for religious tourism. You can visit the house of Agios Paisios, as well as the most famous Monasteries, the Stomio Monastery and the Molivdoskespastos Monastery, where the miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary lies.
Follow the route of historical memory (https://www.konitsa.gr/activity/pezoporikes-diadromes-2/32-diadrome-istorikes-mnemes-1940-41) and visit old outposts in the villages of our Municipality, where the Greek Army defeated the invaders in 1940-41 and the newest glorious pages of Greek history were written.
The wider area of Konitsa, with its rich tradition and picturesque settlements in its numerous villages, make it one of the most popular destinations. The famous Mastorochoria (= the craftsmen’s villages), the villages of Lakka Aoos as well as the Stone villages (Gannadio, Monastiri, Molista and others) are destinations that you must definitely visit. You will be enchanted by the stone art that dominates every corner!
Enjoy the beneficial properties of the Thermal Springs in two villages of Konitsa. In Kavasila, at a distance of 12 km, where you can swim in hot mineral springs and in Amarantos, at a distance of 28 km, where there are steam baths unique of their kind in Europe.
Whenever you decide to visit Konitsa, you can enjoy nature through different activities or simply relax by walking on the paths and cobblestones of the small surrounding villages. Walk in the footsteps of the Saints by visiting old Churches and Monasteries or follow the footsteps of our glorious ancestors who defeated the invaders in the forests and mountains of the region.
Discover Konitsa all year round! We are waiting for you!
How will you get to Konitsa?
Konitsa is 64 km from Ioannina and 40 minutes from Ioannina airport. Transportation to the capital of Epirus is done by KTEL buses and is regular and comfortable. The distance from Athens is 550 km (about 5.5 hours) and from Thessaloniki 350 km (about 3.5 hours). Via Egnatia Road from the North and Ionia Road from the South, the access to the town of Konitsa is now fast, comfortable and safe.