Chóra - Stavrós - Agia Paraskeví - Giórgi t' Aga - Ano Meriá (Stavrós)

Evaluation: This hike describes one of the ways to walk from Chóra to Ano Meriá. It follows some magnificent trails and it provides great panoramic views on the bays of Angáli and Agios Nikólaos. 
If you would rather not end up far into the elongated village of Ano Meriá, we refer to the variant Chóra - Agios Geórgios - Ano Meriá (Theológos).
This hike deserves an evaluation of ***.

Estimated time: It will cost you about 50 minutes to walk from Chóra to the road to Angáli; it will then take almost 1h10 to get to Stavrós.
The total actual walking time is a little under two hours, which actually refers to a hike of twice as long.  

Route description: (0h00) On the first little square, the Platía Dunavi, you go right, along the outside wall of the Kástro and you take the little street on the right of the town hall. After 50 metres, just past the signpost to the bakery on the left, the street straight ahead turns into a path, which descends among the rocks.


The monopáti just outside Chóra.

You now walk on a beautiful and ancient staircase, which goes down with a nice view on the multitude of terraces; some 3 minutes later the staircase descends further to the right, but you go straight ahead on the broad and stony trail. After 3 more minutes you do not take the vague trail off the right, but you continue towards the houses in front of you, by going up gradually. One minute later there is a path on the left – also coming from the centre of Chóra -, but this time as well you proceed straight on. A little further, at the corner of walls and a telephone pole, you no not continue up to the houses, but you take a right. After a couple of minutes you reach a little, square chapel, with behind you a great view on Chóra; you keep going straight ahead and slightly up, until you get to a gravel road, a few minutes later. You follow this gravel road up until you arrive at the asphalt road. You go right and you follow this road for a couple of hundred metres, until you get to a pass. On your right you notice the chapel of Stavrós, with a peculiar kind of little balcony.

(0h23) You DO NO take the path straight across, but you do follow the gravel road, some 20 metres more to the RIGHT – just before the trail to Fyrá and Christós on the left (signpost).
The gravel road curves to the left after a short while and it thus passes on the left-hand side of the three mills and a house.

The road that leads to the three mills.

Just past the third mill and BEFORE a stable under construction, you find a narrow path going down on the right. This path becomes really beautiful and it runs high above the sea. After some 6 minutes there is a side-trail going down on the right and a little further down there is a similar trail off the right – you continue straight ahead twice and some 8 minutes after the mills you reach the asphalt road again (signpost to Voriná). You take a LEFT for a while, until you have passed the chapel of Agia Paraskeví and then you follow the beautiful trail on the right (signpost to Angáli Pezódromos = foot trail).

The hiking sign next to the path to Angáli.

(0h38) You descend steeply, but you then find a marvellous and flat path – on your left you can already see the bay of Angáli. You then go down again, sometimes very steep, with a nice view on Angáli.

View on the bay of Angáli.

After 12 minutes all together you get to a sharp turn to the right – on the left, on the other side of the wall, there is a vague path to Angáli. You descend on the right, but at the end of the trail you should not go to the left too early: you curve to the left between walls and via a concrete slope you get to the concrete road, which descends to Angáli on the left. Straight across there is a cistern and a drinking trough.

(0h54) You go right for a very short while and on the slope on your left-hand side you then find the steep continuation of your trail. Thereafter, a nice gravel path continues horizontally; after 7 minutes you reach a kind of crossing, where you proceed straight ahead, on a steep and rocky path. 


The nice path in the direction of Giórgi t' Aga.

After a couple of minutes the rocky trails curves to the left, between walls and a rock face. Another 5 minutes later you reach a couple of stables and a still occupied house, with a palm tree, belonging to the hamlet of Giórgi t' Aga (Agios Geórgios). 

(1h07) You go up for one more minute and then you notice a path towards the right, diverging from the main trail.  

[This is the path to Theológos and the Folk museum, in Ano Meriá – see the hike Chóra - Giórgi t' Aga - Ano Meriá (Theológos).]

You proceed STRAIGHT AHEAD and shortly thereafter you get to another trail going up on the right, where you go LEFT. You then walk on a very nice gravel path, with a panoramic view on the bay and later on also on the beach of Agios Nikólaos. After about 6 minutes you start descending into the beautiful valley, in the direction of some ruins. Another 2-3 minutes later you reach a wall at a three-forked junction: the path on the left descends to the valley of Agios Nikólaos, see the hike Chóra - Giórgi t' Aga - Agios Nikólaos.
You continue STRAIGHT ON and thus you get to the ruins, which are surrounded by a lot of cacti. 

(1h17) You then go down on a rocky slope between walls for about 3 minutes, and in this way you get to a bed of a river. You go straight ahead on a beautiful path between walls, which goes up quickly – it provides you with a great view on the bay of Agios Nikólaos on the left. You curve to the right and after 7-8 minutes you keep to the right – you thus reach a passage between two walls.

(1h26) Past this passage, you go up, alongside the wall on your right-hand side; there are cairns once in a while and sometimes some coloured dots as well; they show you the right way on a vague track. You should never move too much away from the wall, because when you arrive at the top, you have to get close to the corner of the right wall. You thus climb up for another 3-4 minutes. At the top you find a gravel path between walls and you keep on going up, straight ahead on a rocky trail. You finally get to the right of a little stable with a flat roof.

(1h38) In fact, you are now on a vague crossing: on the left there is a beautiful path between walls; straight on, you notice a vague path on the right of a wall; you take a RIGHT, though, on a vague, reddish-brown trail. After some 3 minutes it gets to a gravel road – there is also a cairn.

(1h41) You follow this road to the right for about 15 minutes. It meanders and goes up and down, at the end it turns into concrete and in this way you arrive on the left of the little church of Stavrós and the two ruins of mills. (1h56)

The little church and the mills of Stavrós.

[You can combine this not very long hike with a descent to the rocky coast of Sýllaka – the point of  arrival of this hike is situated almost straight across, but for the starting point you should walk along the asphalt road on the right for some 9 minutes – until you reach the bus shelter of Kyparisáki. 
The descent to the fairly beautiful little beach of Serfiótiko is another possibility: this descent leaves from the bus stop of Elpída, about 6 minutes to the left, along the asphalt road.
Finally, the beautiful descent to the beach of Agios Geórgios begins at the last but one bus stop, just before the little chapel of Agios Andréas, about 13 minutes to the left.
You can of course also return the same way you came, or wait for the bus at Stavrós – do not forget to write down the bus schedule in advance!]


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