Epiros (EE-per-os) boasts the magnificent 1km-deep Vikos Gorge, part of the larger Northern Pindos National Park, all forests, waterfalls and ice-cold mountain lakes. Add the entrancingly beautiful Zagorohoria (Zagori villages) and the alpine charm of Metsovo, and it's no wonder these mountains draw loyal repeat visitors. Greece's third-largest city, Ioannina, is the gateway, and a lovely lakeside destination in its own right.
Epirus' lowlands aren't bad either. The turquoise Ionian Sea laps at long sandy beaches, and beautiful Parga, sporting a Venetian castle, poses on a hillside above it all. Farther south, Preveza's yacht harbour is a low-key international scene, and the massive ruins of Nicopolis sprawl casually by the road.
Reaching Epiros is an event in itself. The road from Kalambaka winds over the Pindos Mountains; from Macedonia, the Egnatia Odos cuts straight through, via massive tunnels. Leave by sea, on a ferry to Italy or Corfu from Igoumenitsa.
These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Epiros.