Homer’s Path and other mountain trails

The promotion of the mountain paths of Pityos but also of the wider area of Aipus and North Chios as a whole, is continuously among the sphere of our interests regarding the mild form of tourist flow that we envision.

On the vast karst plateau of Aipus there are at least three paths of historical interest, able to attract the most demanding walker, the nature lover, the historian, the researcher, the veteran or the less experienced hiker, the artist looking for landscapes for inspiration.

  • The first, the closest to the settlement is the so-called “Homer’s Path”. In fact, it is one of the subdivisions of the ancient network of paths called “Ellinostrata” (Greek path) and it starts approximately from the 18th kilometer of the Chios-Saint Isidoros-Volissos provincial road in a direction from East to West and reaches the area of Ekklissidia which is above Pityos. According to tradition, it is the path that Homer took coming from Dascalopetra to the village “… the so called Pitys…” (Pseudoherodotus, About Homer Birth and Life). Until the opening of the modern carriage road around the 30s.  For the locals Homer’s path was the main path to reach the city of Chios. Although it has long been abandoned, it is evident in various locations, especially near the village.
  • The second path is the Ottoman carriage road, the so-called “Turkish Road”. It was built by the Ottoman administration, after the massacre of 1822, in the middle of the 19th century when Pityos and the wider area of Northern Chios had to start their reconstruction. Thus this wide road served the need for rapid transport of people and products as well as army expeditions from the city of Chios up to to Volissos. The modern road of the 20th century, to a large extent, “followed” its layout and its materials were reused. However, the Turkish Road is still visible and easy for walking in various places from Votakia area in Aipus up to Selada area and from the 18th kilometer if you cross the so-called “Potama” it leads to Saint Isidoros and from there to the forest of Giannakis, the Drimakas river, the Retsinadika, the Katavassi and Volissos. Especially the part that is closest to Pityos up to Retsinadika is one of the easiest routes and most beautiful hiking trails in Chios.
  • The third path, Hellenostrata (Greek Road), is a “pleasant headache”. What should you choose first? In fact, we are referring to the dense network of ancient Greek paths of the “Ellinostrata” that expand over Aipos and around Pityos. A main path is the one that starts above Myrsinidi and dissects in Fudana.  One section goes to the west meets the beginning of  “Homer’s path” at the 18th kilometer and continues to the southwest. There it splits again and gives the traveler two options: one towards Anavatos and the other to Volissos through the forest (it is visible in several places parallel to the Turkish Road and the modern roadway). Another division of the Greek Road goes north from the Funtana of Aipus to Sykiada, Lagada, Kardamyla. Shortly before reaching Kardamyla, it branches off again to the ancient site of Koila and to Pityos.

Nevertheless the shepherds’ paths on the Mount Oros to the west of Pityos are crucial for the character and formation of the distinct identity of the village. The most important of them is the one that starts from Panagia Spiliotina and after a relatively strenuous hike reaches the abandoned OTE (Greek Telecommunications Organization) building on Mount Oros and continues to the top and the Pityan paddocks at the small plateau of Amethouna.

Recently, the Municipality of Chios granted the abandoned OTE building and a large area that starts from Panagia Spiliotina and reaches the top to “Pityos Proorismos” in order to use them for mild touristic hiking activities.

In September 2023, Amex, the tourist page of the American banking giant American Express, included the particular route among the most interesting activities that a tourist can do in Chios, especially for the view and the satisfaction the hikers get when they reach the top of the mountain (https://www.amexessentials.com/chios-island-guide-what-to-do-on-chios-mastic-mastiha/?fbclid=IwAR1ZsDu92fQbCE-sigilwxipsjq12nXpHTEpzhDVVeiIB61DydK4fyKQQps).

Participation fee upon request: It depends on the length of the tour, number of participants etc.