The outstanding, natural manufacture of Strymonikos gulf, as it’s resting at the outcomes of the mountains of the area, offers a unique chance to visitors. On the way from Stavros to Olympiada, in a path full of curves, and on the way from Olympiada to Ierissos, numberless small and graphical creeks are hidden. They stand there, as lost and forgotten “heavens on earth”, offering the “dessert” of gulf’s enchantment.
The beauty of the site will fascinate the most demanding visitor. Abrupt bright green hillsides and ideal small and huge rocks compose conjectural the incredible beauty of the site.
At the center of Serres Prefecture and to the south, is located the massif of Kerdyllia mountain (highest top at 1092m) a wooded area with incredible beauty and outstanding view to the Strymonikos gulf.
At the borders of the mountain was found in ancient times the important city of Amfipoli, known for its wood and mineral trade provided by the mountain.
The bright green site of Kerdyllia mountain, full of pine, fir and beech trees, springs and brooks, the view to the gulf composes characteristics that are justifying visitor’s presence in the area. At the center of Strymonikos gulf and over the village of Asprovalta, behind a rock stands, protected by a natural hug, the monastery of Saint Georgios which once belong to a monastery of mountain Athos.
West of Strymonikos gulf, at a distance of few kilometers, is situated the lake Volvi the second biggest lake of Greece. Along with lake Koronia were once a part a united lake inside of the Mygdonia area, but today their physiognomy is totally different: not deep and with low oxygen level during the summer for lake Koronia, deep and with more oxygen for lake Volvi.
Numberless torrents and brooks are water supplying the lake maintaining the level of water. It’s surrounded by arable land, hills, narrow swampy zones and stubbles. The north side of the lake is deeper and rougher and indicates the remains of a forest. Two remarkable forests are located in the area: the forest of Rentina on the sides of river Rihios, known as Makedonika Tempi, and the forest of Apollonia, on the side of lake Volvi.
At the middle of the distance between Thessaloniki – Kavala, with borderlines the village of Rentina at west and the village of Stavros crossing on the national road, is located the riverside forest of Makedonika Tempi. It’s an area of special natural beauty protected by the international convention of Ramsar. With a total area of 650.000 m2, the forest is crossed by Rihios River.
The valley of Makedonika Tempi is characterized by luxuriant vegetation, which is obliged to rich of substantial elements and water. The vegetation is developed mostly from huge plane and willow trees, limes and elm trees. Many kinds of bushes, like cornel trees, ferns, poppies and sow thistles.
At the center of Prefecture of Chalkidiki, covering an area starting from mountain Chortiatis, near to Thessaloniki, to Strymonikos Gulf, the mountain Holomontas dominates the width area (highest top on 1165m). The area is wooded and characterized by incredible beauty and great view to each direction. Known from ancient times for its timber, which was coveted by shipbuilders, and for its mines, Holomontas is called “ipsizonos”, which means “high vegetation” cause of its impressive vegetation.
Rough valleys and rocky canyons characterize the site of mountain Holomontas. The verdant forest of Holomontas, usually covered by snow during the winter, offers incredible chances for sightseeing. Pine, fir and oak trees are alternating with chestnut and oak trees while there are plentiful brooks and springs. The air is so clean that takes the breath away.
The jewel of the villages of Strymonikos gulf are the sandy well-organized beaches spread out around the gulf adding their charm on the site. A common characteristic of these beaches is the fact that each year they are awarded by European Union with Blue Flag award, a symbol of crystal clear sea. Each one of the beaches has specifics features that make it unique.
Starting from the area of village Olympiada, on the way to village Ierissos, you’ll discover the so-called First beach and Vina beach. Hidden inside of small natural harbors, these beaches are a point of reference for the youth of the area. An advantage of the two beaches should be considered the refreshment’s place from where you can supply the necessaries. One thing is sure. The magic of First and Vina beach will still your mind.
At the end of village Stavros, right before the area of Milies, right at on the edge of the sea, is located an area of 60.000m2, Platanodasos or Platania as the locals called it. More than 100 age-old plane trees, with height that reaches in some cases 50m and perimeter of 8m, the trees offer their magic to the area of Strymonikos gulf.
Platania is a unique case of plane trees forest to be located so close to the sea. It’s well known that plane trees, the king of vegetable kingdom, love the water element.
The gorgeous valley of Makedonika Tempi is being adorned by the eternal presence of Rihios River, one of the oldest rivers of Greece. Covering an area of only 8klm, with starting point the lake Volvi and flowing in Strymonikos gulf, Rihios is in fact their communication canal.
Rihios was created thousands years ago, when because of strong seismic activity in the area was created a passage that emptied the water of lake Mygdonia being in excess to Strymonikos gulf.
Strymonas River is one of the Balkan rivers with a total length of 360klm (242klm are in Bulgaria and 118 in Greece). Bulgarians call the river Stroumia and during the Turkish domination was known as Kara-Sou. In Greek ground the river flows exclusively inside the borders of Serres prefecture and along with river Aggitis, his main tributary, they are belong to east Macedonia’s hydrographic area. Strymonas flows into Strymonikos gulf, which was named after him.
Flows from mountain Vitaza, southwest of Sofia, in a height of 2.200m. Going south, really wild at first, through rough ravines but later he shapes a fertile valley between mountains Rougien and Rila. Continuing his way to Greece, Strymonas opens up a passage between mountains Males and Pirin and few kilometers from Greece is joined by river Stroumitsa, who is flowing from mountain Plakovitsa located at southeast of Skopjia.
Near to the village of Vrasna, on the way to an area called Kakia Skala and on a hill-side, on the top of it can be found remains of an old gun emplacement used in times of war, is located the cave Drakotripa. It’s a small cave with a special scientific interest about the way it was formed and developed.
Caves usually are created into limestone. At Drakotripa’s case, the caves area and the whole area are dominated by biotic gneusios, which are crossed through pigmatic veins. In the whole area can also be found some large lens or layers of crystalloid calcium, possibly a result of transformation or deformation of the contact with coal rocks.