General information Thesprotia
The Area of Thesprotia extends SW of Ioannina and NW of Preveza, while its southtwestern part is washed by the Ionian Sea. Mountains, sea, natural beauty and historical monuments make the region ideal for ecotourism, regular holidays and outdoor activities all year round. Small islands with picturesque bays lie just off Thesprotia's beautiful coastline, which offers visitors sea and sun plus a wide variety of accommodation and genuine Greek hospitality. The capital of the prefecture, Igoumenitsa, lies 92 km. from Ioannina and is one of Greece's most important ports. A modern town, it is one of the country's main gateways to western Europe and a major hub for Adriatic sea traffic. Just 5 km. west of the town, the marvellous 7 km. sandy beach of Drepano - Makrygiali with its modern facilities, plentiful sunshine and deep blue sea attract thousands of tourists, sports enthusiasts and adventurers all year round.Igoumenitsa is an excellent starting point for visits by boat or road to the major attractions of the prefecture as well as picturesque Parga to the south or the islands of Corfu and Paxi to the west
Of course there are many other options for comfortable accommodation in a cosmopolitan atmosphere, such as Plataria, just 13 km. south of Igoumenitsa, which boasts sandy beaches, a variety of tavernas serving fresh fish and pulsating nightlife during the summer. The seaside community of Sivota, 25 km. south of Igoumenitsa, is famous for its magnificent beaches and lush green surroundings. Built on a small plateau a little further to the south, Perdika affords an excellent view of the southern part of Corfu. The beaches of Karavostasi and Arila are famous for their crystal clear waters and golden sand. To the north of Igoumenitsa (23 km.) lies Sagiada, a picturesque fishing village which once knew great prosperity as the main harbour of Epirus during the Turkish occupation. It was here that Ali Pasha met Napoleon, who was seeking assistance in his military campaigns. Sagiada offers quiet, relaxing vacations in a magnificent setting and is a good base for exploring the northern part of Thesprotia.
Nestled in the foothills of Mt. Korila, 37 km. east of Igoumenitsa, Paramithia is the main town of the Souli area. Its steep, picturesque alleyways, Epirot mansions and the nearby ruins of the Byzantine fortress of Aghios Donatos make it an interesting place to explore. Many old tombs with interesting finds have been discovered in the area of Paramithia, many of which are exhibited in the Ioannina museum. Also worth seeing are the Byzantine church of the Dormition of the Virgin and the Venetian clock in the centre of town that works with counterweights. Filiates is a pretty market town 20 km. north of Igoumenitsa with many old mansions and impressive public buildings. Visitors should consider making the short trip (4 km.) to the Giromeri Monastery with fine 17th century wall paintings.
Thesprotia has a number of important archaeological sites and historical monuments. Ancient Titani (Goumani), the ancient capital of Thesprotia, is one of the most impressive. The settlement was established in the 2nd half of the 4th century BC and flourished during the Hellenistic period. The polygonal walls are well preserved, as are streets, two temples on the acropolis, public buildings theatres and colonnades.
Ancient Elea (Veliani), east of Paramithia, dates from the 4th century BC. The settlement, built in a naturally fortified position, is surrounded by strong polygonal walls. Excavations have revealed an ancient theatre, the Agora and a Hellenistic stoa.
The Regios castle stands on a hilltop 3 km. NW of Igoumenitsa. The top of the hill is surrounded by a wall 5 m. high and 3.7 m. thick. Inside the wall are building foundations and the remains of a round cistern. Various finds and the construction of the wall date the original structure to the 5th century BC.Thesprotia is a nature lover's dream come true. There are a number of interesting walks through spectacular scenery, one of the most popular being the Gorge of Acheron, past old stone bridges and water-mills, through forests of plane trees and along old paths. Other natural attractions are its mountains (Korila, Hionistra), the fir-tree forest NW of Paramithia, a number of caves (Sideri, Psaka), several beautiful lakes (Kalodiki, Limnopoula, Prodani, Morfi and Kaneta) and rivers (Acheron, Kalamas). In the NW of the prefecture, the marshlands of the Kalamas Delta provide a resting and nesting place for thousands of birds. The delta is also home to herds of wild horses. One can visit the small islets in the delta by caique from nearby Sagiada.