Filippiada: the Stork’s Nest
Don’t be a silly goose, go for the storks. They were the first to appreciate the beauty of this place, so they turned Filippiada into a favorite destination. They enjoy the beauty of the landscape, that resembles Switzerland, and the Byzantine monastery that was erected as an act of repentance from an emperor who cheated on his wife.
1. The plague saintEach community needs a patron saint, especially in times when disasters remind people of their impotence and weakness. Filippiada was forced to choose when it came face to face with the terrible spectre of the plague.
2. The locksmiths’ remainsBizani was the key to the liberation of Ioannina in 1912 but the process of unlocking the door required the sacrifice of hundreds of young men. This is where their bones lie.
3. Royal child cityWhat is a queen to do when her country is torn by civil strife? Believing in the notion that she is the greatest mother of all and taking care of any children she can lay her hands on may be a course of action.
The plague saintThe impressive bell tower was erected in 1912-1913, soon after Flippiada was liberated by the Greek army. The architect was Vasileios Georgakis from Pramanta, a mountain village in Epirus. He designed the bell tower to withstand earthquakes and strong winds. There was no cement, so he used stones kept together with lead pegs. When the bell tower was finished, the committee responsible for its erection didn’t want to pay the architect the agreed price of sixty gold napoléons. The members of the committee were concerned that the tower would collapse when the bells rang. Georgakis sent his own son atop as the bells sounded, to prove his confidence in his work.
Spies and busybodies
The locksmiths’ remainsIt was obvious that the liberation of Ioannina would require months of preparations. In the meantime, Filippiada attracted curious busybodies eager to find out what was happening in the front lines. Among them lurked numerous spies, who tried to inform the Ottoman authorities on Greek preparations. The situation was so bad that any Greek officers who wished to discuss critical confidential matters had to seek the necessary privacy in the countryside. The greatest concern arose from the presence of foreign military attachés and embassy personnel who could not be turned away without diplomatic repercussions but who were also sometimes keen to help the Ottoman army.
A healthy dose of DDT
Royal child cityThe first group of children arrived in Zirou Lake in early 1948 and in great haste due to the urgent evacuation of an orphanage in an area where military operations were under way. The children had lice and most of them were barefoot. The authorities sprayed them with DDT to kill the lice and cut their hair real short. They gave them clean underwear and new clothes and shoes, before treating them once more with DDT and petroleum. When all this cleaning and scrubbing was done, the children went to the restaurant, where the adults noticed that one of them seemed unsure as to what to do with his food. It turns out the child had never used a plate before and was unaccustomed to having a whole serving to himself.
Nea Odos has undertaken the study, planning, construction, operation, administration and maintenance of the “Ionian Road” project. A breathtaking project covering a total length of 380klm.
Why take a self-guided tour?
This is a self-guided tour based on the award-winning storytelling concept developed by Clio Muse and the fascinating narratives prepared by our handpicked destination experts.
You can enjoy each multilingual tour by using your smartphone or tablet at your own pace even if you are offline. The interactive map on your screen will guide you step-by-step as you explore all points of interest along your route. Each stop comes with a selection of our signature stories allowing you to tailor the tour experience to your personal interests and schedule.
After downloading Clio Muse app, you can access this tour and activate it any moment you wish and also repeat it any time. To best enjoy our multimedia self-guided tour (comprising maps, video, audio and text) we recommend the use of headphones.
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