A wonderful walking and bird-watching destination in the Mediterranean, Lesvos offers a stunning combination of natural and man-made landscapes to enjoy on foot or by car. It is a treasure house of very early ancient remains dating from the 7th century BC and boasts one of the finest natural monuments in Europe, the Petrified Forest, created 20 million years ago.
Cloaked with forests of chestnut and oak, the island becomes a riot of flowers in the spring and is renowned for its wild orchids (as many as 65 species) and with its own special endemic, Ophrys lesbis.
The island’s hills and mountains are riddled with little known ancient trails and cobbled donkey paths, many of which form the walks featured in this new guidebook. Refreshingly free of high-rise hotels and beach-orientated tourism, Lesvos is seizing an opportunity to rediscover itself through ecotourism in its totally unspoilt countryside. Fascinating sites, often unprotected, allow you to do your own interpretation. Follow the authors’ footsteps into villages still steeped in an old way of life and into a countryside as beautiful as any in the Mediterranean. The car tours, too, show off the very best the island has to offer and will take you to some secret places they have discovered.
An excellent guide – Walking in Lesvos was the first of the Sunflower guides I bought (I have since bought several more) and it really made a difference to my holiday in Lesvos. My husband and I did not hire a car on this trip, so we only used the walks but they were fabulous walks, taking in the whole variety of Lesvos scenery, off the beaten track but not difficult to get to, very well described in terms of geographical features along the way (so you don’t get lost), fitness level required and duration of walk. I now buy Sunflower guides for every holiday. (M.Kendrick, Amazon)
The drives and walks in the guide are very detailed and full of interesting and useful information regarding the landscape, buildings, where to stop for picnics and good swimming spots. Even without a car you will be able to get to Mytilene, the capital, by bus and do the Mytilene town walk and some of the museums. We did car tours 2 and 4 and enjoyed them both immensely. Skala Simanimias was particularly charming. The walks using ‘kalderimi’ (old donkey paths) are especially atmospheric. As usual the guide is very reliable. (H.Hogg, Amazon)
The best months for walking in Lesvos are April, May, June, September and October.
For an extremely useful source of information about the island, go to http://www.greekisland.co.uk and click on Lesvos or to browse through an interesting selection of photographs and walking notes, visit http://www.foxysislandwalks.com/Lesvos.htm