The capital of Evros is Alexandroupoli and has a leading role in the geographical area of Eastern Macedonia and Thrace being the connecting gate between the countries of the European Union, the Mediterranean sea, Asia and the countries around the Black sea, therefore the town has developed itself to one of the major junctions of the European Union.
The town of Alexandroupolis is presenting a rapidly growing economy.
Important centres of transit - trade commerce are the harbour and also the railroad station. The town has also promoted itself as an important tourism destination after the implementation of the "I. Kapodistrias" plan and the setting of new settlements. Nowadays the visitors have the opportunity to combine marine, spa and eco tourism.
The coastal settlements of the municipality of Alexandroupolis - Makri, Mesimvria, Dikella- and also the mountainous settlements- Potamos, Avandas, Esimi, Leptokaria, Kirki and Sikorachi are offering routes where the visitors can enjoy the rare natural beauty. The town is also very close to areas of ecological importance which are the Evros delta and the forest of Dadia. Additionally, once in the area someone should also visit the famous spa in the neighbouring municipality of Traianoupolis.
With a population of over 60.000 people, Alexandroupolis is offering
high living standards, developing and lively cultural live and many
options for the locals and the visitors to entertain and enjoy themselves.
"The crossroad of nation, cultures and beauty!"
Either coming or leaving from east or west, Alexandroupolis is the "key" town of Greece. Someone could describe Alexandroupoli as an "open lap" towards the sea. It's a town where tradition meets modernity combining leisure and fun. It is the town of the sea and the tourists. The location of the town is like a node joining Europe and Asia, West and East, therefore the approach of the town is possible and can by done by all road, rail, air and marine transportations.
Alexandroupoli is the capital of the county and all the services and the
hospitable locals are at the disposal of the foreigners. The comfortable taverns,
the nice caf? and bars alongside the harbour, the luxury hotels and the plenty
options for entertainment can guaranty enjoyable and relaxing vacations.
Alexandroupoli with a population of over 60000 people is the capitol of Evros County. The town was named after King Alexander who visited the area after the liberation in 1920 (May 14th). The town is the seat of the medical school and the pedagogical academy of the Democritus University. By the 19th century the population was composed initially from fisherman, but after 1870 it began to rise especially after the setting of the railroad which connected Thessalonica with Istanbul. The commercial character of the town was determined by its location.
Alexandroupoli is a new town with modern infrastructure based on a well structured urban plan. The town having harbour, airport and railroad station is an important transportation junction. You can find also a number of museums such as the Folk museum of Mrs Giannakidou, the natural history museum and the ecclesiastical museum. The mountainous region with its ruins, the gorges and caves is a very impressive sight also and by the seaside which is the main attraction of the area you can visit the cave of the Cyclopes and the ancient settlement of Mesimvria.
Many hotels and a large camping are offering their services to all the visitors.
Especially during the summertime a number of different events, exhibitions,
feasts and conferences give to the town a particular cultural colour. The
Egnatia Park and the light house square (the light house is the symbol of
the town) are the places where most of the events are performed.
THE FOREST OF DADIAS
The forest of Dadias runs in the middle of the prefecture of Evros and includes the hills south-east of the Rhodope mountain range. The region came in 1980 under environmental protection and strict barriers include two zones, an area of 72,900 acres and a periferriaki area around the central zone, namely an area 357,100 acres. The quiet hills of Dadias interrupted by numerous small rivers and ravines, mature forests of pine and valanidies interrupted by young xefota and alternate with meadows, pastures and cultivated fields, while lifted rocks between this majestic landscape. A mosaic of habitats, where you can find many animals and plants. Within the dense parts of the forest reside more than 48 species of mammals animals (wolves, deer, squirrels, bats). The rich fauna of reptiles, which serves as the main food of birds of prey, includes a total of 41 different species (snakes, frogs, turtles, lizards). This part nests have more than 120 bird species, whose number exceeds 219, if included the winter and summer visitors. Those belonging to some rare birds, such as A black stork.
But the feature of Dadias are birds of prey. Within the protected area of natural park were 36 of the 38 species of birds of prey living in Europe, of which 20 have been permanently nests in Dadia, eg The Black Vulture, the chrysogerako and aetogerako, the region is gaining in importance throughout Europe.
In oikotouristiko Dadias the center has received a natty hotel, a restaurant and coffee shop and an information center. The experienced and trained staff takes the tour escorts and visitors in numerous activities.
In one of them is the chapel of Agios Theodoros, whose frescoes in two layers are from the 11th and the 13th century.
Northwest at Kirki small villages, and Sykorrachi Leptokaria, beautifully spread out in impressive mountain peaks. To see someone all the ravines and valleys of this region need several days and great strength, because not all roads suitable for cars. Finally it is worth the visit and traditional village with circular huts of Sarakatsanon.
The TRAIL OF THE SEA AND HISTORY
The zone was created Mesimvrias probably the end of the 7th BC century and reached the edge of the 5th and 6th BC century. You can explore the area daily.
For relaxation there are many kilometers long sandy beaches along this path,
crystal-clear water and beaches with very fine sand inviting for swimming.
MOUNTAINS AND PLACES AROUND THE ALEXANDROUPOLI The stranger who comes in Alexandroupolis Greece on the other you are struck by perhaps the modern appearance and the geometric layout of impeccable. He knows that it is perhaps a new city that has just ended a century of life. And you may not imagine that this new city also has an interesting circle worth the visit.
Just a few kilometers outside of town enter the mountains. Curbs are south of where in the Rhodope KLEISOURA crossing the mountain tumors tryponei rail coming from Komotini, Thessaloniki, Athens, D. Europe. The route and come from Komotini gives emotional moments bliss for those who can enjoy even today the beauty of natural landscapes.
The route is beautiful is the ancient road that led from the plain of Komotini in the Ebro Valley, without descends in coastal cities as did the Egnatia Highway. In the middle of this mountain village path Circe, the Kirkas the older called that served as a stopping place for travelers. Indeed, the old name has no connection with the witch Circe, but, as they say old men of the village was from the Turkish word Kir Khan said that outdoor inn or Kirk Hahn namely Forty Chania.
A few kilometers further south side stick up 'on the railway line installations of mines. Esfyze here earlier life. Thousands of tons of ore mined from the bowels of the earth giving work to thousands of manpower. Now this whole complex of warehouses and workshops with epallila floors, air traffic railway to be suspended vagonakia unemployed in the blowing air, is a bleak picture death immobility. And the only hope of the world stand there for the reopening of mines. Because according to a study by the Institute of Geological Studies of our country, there are large reserves containing pyrite basically smaller quantities of iron and lead gold and silver. In degraded mountainous area, the systematic exploitation of the mountain of wealth will help them financially alive and out of the misery.
At present, however, the galleries remain arachniasmenes, misoereipomena many buildings and rusting ore samples of the vast warehouse.
It appears that the area of mines were known since antiquity because here found traces of exploitation, of which an unknown age. In the nearby woods identified megalithic sacred monuments like Menchir of Western Europe. Blocks up and around like stones PLATEIES seats. Primitive forms of worship that from the Neolithic era? The time and research will tell.
But this beautiful valley close that continues to Alexandroupolis has other things to show.
The new route starts from the city and marching next to the lines is striking to the north. Open plain at the beginning, the slopes of the mountains and after his exposures between the chonetai the road to be divided in the early hills.
The left branch is a chalikostromenos way. Moves very closely with the foot hill to the green peak seems like a coronet of a complex one by medieval towers. Thin and rising aerinoi galano scene in the towers. As certify the Alexandroupolitis researcher Angelos Poimenidis:
"echrisimopoiisen up and the Frankish (13th century) to be kept by the barons of raids Thrakikon breeds of these mountains, or better than the raids of Bulgarians".
It is the castle River, which created a version of Gatelouzon of Genoa who conquered the region after the 4th Crusade and took them outside the jurisdiction of the islands of Lesbos, Lemnos and Samothrace and Aino here with the region.
Prehistoric settlement by Professor Bakalaki and even wealthy, it seems that the hill was one in which life must have been a period of several centuries and kalopelekimenes stones available to it is an indication of the presence of life in historical years. So from prehistory to the Middle Ages vastaxe life here that modern, unfortunately, are trying to wipe out the traces of one and 'leave to collapse these proud towers.
The road is heading next to the railway line, when the next sharp and kofti when the mountainside between cultivated fields and beneath the foliage of Platanias enjoy the humidity of the small river. Some km route and removed the mountains forming huge hug scattered with huge trees. Vertical huge rocks rising on the east side reminiscent of the Stones Faidriades of Delphi in imposing party.
Narrow path goes upwards to their base, which has recently apochtisei concrete steps. Leads to large cave with the old Byzantine church of Agios Theodoros to high chest of enormous rocks seems like a dark eye. Dynamomeni voice from the crucible of rocks like echoes from supernatural loudspeaker.
Steep stairways and the 'riders pant. Fortunately there are casual iron bars that are fastened to the rock. In leading to the entrance of the cave to see that you are in a small church evocative. On the east side has small sovatismenos wall separating a tiny cavity of the rock in San Step. The sovatismenos this wall is frescoed temple where misosvistes images. Illustrated are the walls of the cave which are the walls of the church. The experts explain the painted in the 12th and 14th century into two layers the second covering the first.
Frescoes are the images of the first period and the serene and melancholic forms with his eyes and marzipans with tons of light paints are apopnefmatomenes suspended in celestial dematerialization.
With vibrant colors and the method of xerography (Tempera) are the images of the second period back in the 14th century. Grandiose perception monumental compositions by the experts.
Ypachoun not historical information about the cave. Perhaps the excavation of us reveal traces of prehistoric times and life of our ancestors spilaiovion. The legends speak of hermits who martyrisan for their faith and apochtisan the reputation of San. Perhaps that is why the cave was converted to church, which is dedicated to the memory of Agios Theodoros and celebrates on May 16.
Another tradition, often in the Thracian area, says that each year the previous day of celebration came here to become a deer in the Holy sacrifice.
However, the narrow valley, which was one of the passages which lead from the plain of Komotini in Thracian beach, that is inhabited by very old. Today few people pass through the region. Perhaps only the peasants who grow tobacco and corn with the few fields, and pilgrims who come to the feast of Saints. And only trains that pass, whistling tarazoun with the serenity of the place.
But let us go back to the castle River, where they divided the road, to get the right of the branch. This paved road that passes between Curly with low hills territory, arrives in a small village in Havana. Certainly his name will be given to resemble the ancient Thracian tribe of Havana who emigrated to an industry and resulted in Evia where things settled.
Hills, other stone with steep rocky peaks and the other with smooth green back, closing the horizons of the village, leaving an opening to the south.
Inhabited by very old and this place. Filled the surrounding hills and mountains of old castles and traces of human settlements, even from the Neolithic era. Passage was the Avantas located in a small river and next to the crossing to bring the mountainous area on the beach with good climate. Thus explains the residues from the castles in the various KLEISOURA. And this is that the hill-Boz Tepe in the northern Havana. As you see from your village presented a steep conical hill with stone Green Berets and costume from dense bush. Twenty money keeps the ascent from the base in the bush and on the west side of the invisible from the village, and suddenly you are in front of the ancient wall which it sparagmata at the height of five to eight meters.
A magnificent gateway obstructed by trees and bushes that grow between the stones. Even armholes of the wall rooted shrubs and grasses and covering them with branches. Soaring towers still rise on the side of the gate. From the mid part survive even the steps in order to assemble the forefront. I kept them kolovomenes one stand out from behind the runway where the warriors stood. Throughout the forested region, dense Romanian media and the outside of the wall, the medieval as it appears from the material, does not allow you to have a complete picture of the area. But koitagma than confirms the battlements of the castle topical.
In southern and eastern foot of ypsomatos passes the small river and the road leading to mountain exposures, the plateau of Aisymis. South, in the crispness of hills rising towers River. The successive wave of hills ranging from near and removed to cover the horizon from stained light green to dark blue. Scarves vapor and clouds fray by sitting in distant peaks. In the low hills southeast covering the horizon and just seem to leave the peaks of the mountains of Ainos. Right the sea with the dark blue surface of spreads as the horizon which covers the dark volume of Samothrace.
It is shocking that the impression you create is the remnant of the old castle of Havana. Here feel the concern of old people who left here on something of their lives, having to defend so built the castle. And not only needs a little dose of imagination in order to represent the old days, when the salpinges and the impact of the bell given signs of alarm. Then surely the people of the region will raise lachaniazontas the steep slope carrying the little things while the northern KLEISOURA by the invaders came.
Now the village of Avanta quiet reigns. Only the voices of children heard and the discussions of Elder in the cafe back to the past and consider the present. You willing to speak the old castles of the region, who know a child too, there evoskan the herds, will talk even for the old church of the village and will lead to watch it. Why alone is not going to tell nor the suspect behind the white mantrotoicho. It is a church with a low roof is obviously its small stature does not cause the allopisto conqueror. Old embossed with flowers and Byzantine crosses entoichismena is high on the south corner of the front wall. And an inscription for the repair of the church with the date 1838. To be subjected misofoto interior of St. George with thick walls and small windows. We feel that in times of slavery and find rest antistyli the Genous misolipothymi their soul to get new powers until you reach the end of the tests.
The villagers hidden story about the church which was hidden skoleio of Turkish rule, for the old armatolous for their den in the forest. Remnants of the old walls, from roads, wells and from various other works of human hands. would you say to the Tsepel-Kaya, the Hill of the monastery that stands beside the road that goes to Aisymi. With steep slopes and sharp rocks' between difficult passages. Walls primitive vulnerable points in closing the crossings. I would not say over this hill region of Alexandroupolis, one of the hundreds petrodi inaccessible hills if this had no special significance.
In this hill, thus, the official name is "Monastery Hill", and on to large rocks, found carved with depictions constellation wells. The curator of antiquities Thrace Mr Diamandis Triantafillos wrote about it in No 41/1986 issue of the magazine "Thrakika time" of Xanthi:
"In a rock clearly that the cavities forming the shape of asterismou the Big Dipper."
But apart from small wells and larger structures are "the throne" as the len the residents of Havana, because like the rock skalista seats and
"One might interpret as the socket type reserved for worship offers".
There are also embossed or carved trays, symbols of the sun and laxefmena jars and other pottery. Clay steer statue head found earlier, which would be retrospective.
"The impressive form of height, the nature of the soil, the number of construction carved altar and rocky led us on the assumption that this is an extensive outdoor worship space, a sanctuary of the god of the mountain again Risou Rodopi."
It was not the Rissos the mythical king of Thrace, who died in the war of Troy. Then later became a goddess of Thrace of the Hellenistic and Roman years with the name Thrakas Hero and Thrace Ippeas to change in St. George Christian of Thrace years.
This impressive outdoor space Kikonon worship of the ancient, impressive but the path to the mountain resort Aisymi things from there for three Vrises. The Aisymi is a village that his name is reminiscent of the Homeric homonymous city. Dogan Chisar the old name of the village, which translates to "Castle of vulture." Perhaps because the region has much of what his birds of prey. Open plateau around the village with plenty of almonds, walnuts and fruit and many other peaks around the forest trails of vegetation.
The place is suitable for mountain vacation. Clean air, cold water that comes in direct from the source and poured from the tap of the large square, with lime and around the fountain in the middle, are some of the elements of Aisymis. That is why many enthusiasts of mountain tourism are here to stay the summer. Elegant houses with a variety of rhythms and cheery gardens overlooking the remote peaks.
Appropriate starting point for many mountain routes is the Aisymi. Trip to the forest for three Vrises and Kelempek the hill. At the peak of 874 measures pyrofylakeio standing of the Forest Service. Survey the surrounding mountains to blow the whistle of alarm in the event of fire.
The road goes upwards among the oaks and oxyes creating cool galleries with branches and reminiscent of Gothic ceilings metropolises. Taps with cold water xedipsoun the passers. After the small village of Leptokarya bisected the road. One turns to the Kelempek too, is under the shady branches. The dew can go up to your innards. Fteres up to the door and trunks of trees in the greenish moss.
The peak of Kelempek you get the view as to open skep. The ridge of Siapkas with pointy cone of Bulgaria and back to the North. The right Silo, the tallest peak in the region. In the northwest ridge of Rodopi until the end of the horizon with the plain of Komotini on its toes. At the South of the mountain Ismaros Kikonon Odyssey of the lower peaks of us. Back raised in the quiet blue vision of Samothrace and closer to distinguishable binoculars port of Alexandroupolis. Leftmost to the East of the mountains and Ainos ahead of them in the steam suspects in the Ebro Delta. In the north East endless waves of crisp green hills are lost in the background as a blurry dream. Kyprokoudoyna heard and bleat.
The trip ends with the visit to a facility in Three forest Vrises. Since Kelempek the road follows the slope and gives an excellent view to the southeast. Thus stands out among the chorus of ateleftito ypsomaton the forked hill with the premises of the television and parapiso Gkimprena polytragoudimeno the mountain Soufliou.
Roads intersect at many large forest of beech leading to the Grand Dereio,
and the Kotronia Dadia.