Arachova is such a magical place, a breath away from Athens into the mountains is a perfect destination if you are visiting Athens in the Winter and looking for a relaxing get away. It is a 2 hour drive from the city center, the road is pretty good and it is a completely different scenery, a lot of mountains, fresh air and a lot of nature.
The city itself is romantic with a lot of stonewall houses, nice alleys and a lot of restaurants and coffee shops for you to enjoy! The food is amazing and most if not all of the products that you will try at the restaurants are from Arachova or the surrounding small villages, people are friendly and you will find a lot of different things to do and enjoy, not only the food but also the nature and global archaeological sites like Delphi. Delphi is very close from Arachova around 12km which is around 7.4 miles, you can go there by car or a local taxi and you will need around 16 minutes.
Visiting Delphi from Arachova is a must, you will walk by this amazing archaeological site, read through how everything was build, why Delphi was considered the center of the world by the Ancient Greeks and how all this was made before Christ. Apart from the archaeological sites it is a great small hike, you will enjoy the view, get some fresh air and see the mountains and the nature. I’m sure you will relax!
Apart from Delphi, Arachova is also widely known as a Ski/Snowboard destination, there is a ski center very close called Parnassos. Even if there is no snow it would be great to drive there and then go for a hike, there are a lot of hike routes around Arachova. if it has snow in the mountain then even better since you will be able to go up to the top and have a great day skiing or snowboarding!
On your way back from Parnassos ski center make sure to stop in the Le Grand Chalet, this is a unique place, very cosy with great food and drinks, one of the best indoor views can be found there. Try the blue wine(which is the hot wine) and the risotto with the mushrooms(those mushrooms are fresh from the mountains), if you combine those two options it would be a day to remember!
When you should visit Arachova? Arachova is a winter destination that means that it would be great to go there beginning of November to February – March. It will have snow around December and the peak of the season would be around January which would be also pretty cold for Greek standards.
How can you get to Arachova? There are two ways to get to Arachova, you can get there by car or a bus. The fastest is by a car since you can reach there for a little less than 2 hours and a bus would do around 2 hours and 15-20 minutes depending on the traffic.
Arachova with snow is such a great destination to be since you can do a lot of different activities, go for skiing or snowboarding, stay warm close to a fireplace and enjoy the view with great food but also enjoy traditional Greek music and beverages and dance until the AM. Another way for you to get the full experience would be to do all of the above, I’m not sure if you are going to be perfectly relaxed but it would definitely be a great experience!
In terms of food and restaurants, there are a lot of places to choose from and have great local food, outside of Arachova center you should eat at the Grand Chalet that I mentioned before, in terms of where you should eat or go in the center, have a coffee and relax at the Jay Oh which has very comfy sofas to relax and gives you blankets, have a cheese platter and try out the Rakomelo.
At night you should definitely visit Panayiota which is a bit more outside of the center area, a bit further up but totally worth it if you are in a mood of good food and to enjoy the Greek nightlife! You should expect great food and a lot of music and party. If you are not in the mood of going a bit higher you should go to Oistros restaurant in the center which has music and great food, try out the Salad with the mushrooms, the wild pork with tomatoes and of course the local wine, Vivlia Chora red or white is always a great pick.
On your way back from Arachova to Athens don’t forget to buy something for your friends or beloved ones, you can find a lot of different items and gifts to buy. From the classic magnets for their fridge to other items like fur hats, handmade statues and there is also the option of the local food.
This was the post about Arachova, if you liked it you can share it and like it and if you have any questions let me know so I can help you plan your trip! Safe travels and stay warm!