Kastoria Travel Guide

  • lake of Kastoria at sunset
    lake of Kastoria at sunset
    by EviP
  • lake of Kastoria by night
    lake of Kastoria by night
    by EviP
  • lake of Kastoria
    lake of Kastoria
    by EviP

Kastoria Things to Do

  • Doultso

    Doultso is the oldest, traditional district of Kastoria.It is reached by the southern lake route, where vehicles can be parked and continue to explore the area on foot. Stone paved street and old traditional houses and mansions above the lake maintain the district's traditional character

  • Folklore Museum of Kastoria

    The Folklore Museum of Kastoria is situated at a traditional mansion built at the late 18th century and occupied by the family of Mr Nerantzis Aivazis until the mid 1960s. The mansion's rooms, furniture, decoration and equipment is preserved and refurbished by local craftsmen to present the local culture and traditions.

  • Lake walk

    Walk and stroll by the lake for a unique experience of the nature and a refreshing feeling of calm, stillness.Follow with a drive or hike along the lake road

  • Strolling around the lake

    There are two options if you want to enjoy the lake. One is to go around the promontory, that is to make the small round. The best way to do it is on foot. It is only 7 kilometers and I suspect the locals have done it many times. On the way you will meet people walking, children playing and others sitting on the shore peacefully holding their...

  • The fur industry

    The fur industry has been the most profitable occupation for the people of Kastoria. It has developed since the Byzantine period when many young men came to learn the skill and their trade had spread to faraway places, being the major factor of the flourishing economy of the place. Nowadays it has declined a lot, for ecological reasons at first and...

  • “arhontika” - Kastoria

    Old mansions have been restored and stand proudly in their beautiful gardens. Most of them were built in the 17th and 18th centuries. They are called "arhontika" and they are found mostly on the promontory along the lakeside road, in Apozari. They usually have two storeys and are nice architectural samples of the time when the city was thriving....

  • Lake Orestiada

    The lake, with its lakeside forest, has been declared “Monument of Natural Beauty” and is protected by the programme “Nature 2000”. It preserves more than 200 species of birds, some in danger. It also has interesting flora like the hydrophilic trees, and of course a lot of different kinds of fishes. Nice cafes and restaurants with tables right on...

  • Park along lake Orestida

    A very pleasant park stands along lake Orestida. It has well shaded areas and moreover, you can get a fresh beer at one of the tables showing on the left of the photo!If you visit in summer, it will give a pleasant rest after wandering in the streets of the old city for a while!

  • Carved door

    The entrance into this house has a a very simple double wooden door. Each door has a triple diamond shape carving.The engraving on top (second photo) says that it was built in 1863. After the date, there is the letter “phi” and a 5. Does that means 5th of February 1863? May be!

  • Narrower passage

    In the narrowest passages, the corbelled part of the house nearly touches the front of the house on the other side! It is convenient when it is raining or snowing not to get wet! In some cases, like on the photo, the logs that sustain the corbel are masoned and not apparent.The second photo shows the whole passage with its irregular stairs

  • Stork in Kastoria

    As the sharpness of the photos are greatly reduced for VT, you might have not noticed on the first photo of the previous tip that there was a stork standing on its nest, right in the center of Kastoria. This is not really a surprise as lake Orestida and nearby area covered by reeds makes a perfect habitat for storks. Moreover, European storks, when...

  • Not really moucharabieh

    n several Arab countries like Morocco, some of the windows are added by a wooden “moucharabieh”, an oriel window enclosed with carved wood latticework that allows to se outside without being seen. In Kastoria, some structure might at first sight considered as moucharabieh but they actually have been built for another purpose.The first photo shows...

  • Balkanic architecture

    In the narrow passages of the old city, many houses have a typical Balkanic aspect with the second level corbelled and supported by long curved logs as can be seen on the first photo.The second photo shows that the tiled roofs that project largely over the passage.The third photo shows several houses with a corbelled second level in the Doltso...

  • Unknown church

    This is another of the 84 small Byzantines churches in Kastoria. On its southern side, it has a gallery with a twin double arch. Though this gives it a distinct style, I have not been able to find the name of this little jewel. Anybody knows ?

  • Church of Hagios Nikolaos Kasnitzis ?

    I feel this church might be the church of Hagios Nikolaos Kasnitzis. It is a small single-aisled church with 12th century wall-paintings. Unfortunately, as most of the 84 small Byzantine and post Byzantine churches in Kastoria it was locked and we could not visit the inside. If this was actually the church of Hagios Nikolaos Kasnitzis, it has...

  • Taxiarchis church

    The church of the Taxiarchis (Archangel) of the Metropolis stands amid modern buildings, near the cathedral. It was built in the 10th century as a small triple-aisled basilica with a narthex.It has wall paintings from 1360 on two sides. They are not in very good condition but though remain very interesting as they are a distinct style from what had...

  • Fur capital

    Since very long ago (may be for a thousand years!), Kastoria has been involved worldwide in the fur manufacture and trade. The guild of furriers of Kastoria was famous for ruling the trade and working for the fame of Kastoria’s furs. It was first awarded its power by patriarch Jeremiah II Tranos "the Great" around 1600.Furs are nailed on boards and...

  • Houses Balkanic style

    The oldest part of the city, has a distinct character. It does not look like what most visitors expect from Greece. It has definitely a central Balkanic look.The first photo shows one of the typical houses of Kastoria with corbelled verandas.Second and third photos: Some of them are not in good condition and let us hope that they will soon be...

  • Arrival in Kastoria

    When arriving in Kastoria, the first sight that catches the eye are the roofs of the old houses, covered with the so-called Roman tile (also named half boot because of its shape). Glimpses between two houses reveal lake Orestida and the modern city, nested around a bay.

  • Kastoria main things to do

    Kastoria is a beautiful little town on the Kastoria lake, and probably the fur capital of the wordl, actually built on a peninsula protruding in the lake.Well worth a visit. One day or evn half if pleplanned is plenty. The main things to do in town are:1.to walk on the lakefront on the main side of town, there are also lots of cafes and some nice...

  • "A Tour of the Byzantine Churches of...

    Kastoria is famous, among many other things in Greece, about its unique and wonderful Byzantine churches.Their total "score" is 61, but the most important ones are 5:1)Panaghia=(Our Lady) Koumbelidiki2)Aghios Stephanos=(Saint Stephen)3)Taxiarches Mitropoleos=(the Holy Achangels)4)Aghioi Anarghyroi=(Saint Cosme and Saint Damien)5)Aghios Nicolaos tou...

  • Panagia Mavriotissa

    8 km from Apozari, (the north side of the town) is the monastery of Panagia Mavriotissa. The church, built in the 11th century, has very beautiful murals, very well preserved. The visitor can go there by taxi, but if the weather is good, I would suggest them to go by foot. The walk is magnificent: a path beside the lake, full of plane trees,...

  • Churches

    There are about 84 small Byzantine and after Byzantine churches in Kastoria. Many of then are built in the yards of the houses and are locked during the day. Don’t hesitate to knock and ask for the keys. Still, if you can’t decide which churches you must visit, the best way is to ask from the Byzantine Museum to give you information (and the keys),...

  • The Byzantine Museum

    The Byzantine Museum is located on the peak of the town, few meters from Panagia Koumbelidiki. It houses icons dated from the 11th century. The museum is small and in the exhibition room the visitor can see only few of the icons. Unfortunately, most of them are in the museum’s basement, waiting to be transferred in a bigger building some day, but...


Kastoria Hotels

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Kastoria Restaurants

  • Good local Kastoria dishes

    Krontiri, on the main lake front.The main thing is that they cook local dishes and prepare local (Jastoria) sweets, which you can't find easily elsewhere outside Kastoria.Friendly staff (exceptionally friendly, I noticed because many were smiling, a rarity in Greece and were polite and helpful).Good dishes (most of them) form local recipes (again...

  • Tradition and quality

    This tavern offers a few but tasteful plates of the local recipes. The view of the lake is staning and really relaxing. Try as many dishes as you can... everything is perfect.

  • Traditional local dishes!!

    The restaurant is housed in a traditional mansion built in 1860. It is one of the most beautiful and best preserved houses in town. The menu has many local traditional dishes. I tried the "sarmades" (stuffed pickled cabbage) and the "makalo" meatballs. Both great!!


Kastoria Local Customs

  • Ragoutsaria II

    The unusual Kastorian Carnival begins from the evening of January the 1st and is completed during the three day period of 6-8 January. It is a banquet of dancing, singing, music and scrumptious local foods, escorted by very good raki and wine. The last day the events climax with the big parade of crowds called "bouloukia", in "Omonia" square, that...

  • Ragoutsaria I

    Kastorians have maintained many of their local cultural traditions. One may see these elements alive during various events, organized by local organizations and associations. One of these events is the Local Carnival named "Kastoriana Ragoutsaria".Ragoutsaria are known by this name only in Macedonia and Thessaly. The name origins from the Latin...

  • Kastoria Hotels

    12 Hotels in Kastoria

    63 Reviews and Opinions

Kastoria Warnings and Dangers

  • JLBG's Profile Photo
    School warning sign 1 more image

    by JLBG Written Oct 25, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I am always increasing my collection of school warning road signs. In Kastoria, I got two different ones, hand made following the inspiration of the painter!

    The first one shows a big boy wearing a shorts and with amazingly swollen knees that must hurt him leading a thin waisted little girl with a ribbon in the hair.

    On the second photo, the slimmer boy leads a girl with a pony tail

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Kastoria Off The Beaten Path

  • Sidirohori for wild mushrooms

    About ten minutes (or 12 klm) outside Kastoria, with direction to the north, on 1080 metres of mountain Vitsi, there is the village of Sidirohori, also called Sistevo until 1928, with about a hundred residents today. Entering the village you will meet the sacred, after-byzantine church of Saint- Nickolas built in 1813. At the main cafe-tavern of...

  • Odd chapel

    Roadsides in Greece are dotted with small chapels with a burning lamp and a few pictures to honor some saint. Amazingly, this one was not set on the roadside but in the middle of an oat field. I wonder why??

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