Ioannina is one of the two Greek cities (the other is Kastoria) whose districts stretch all the way to a lake, while at the same time, bearing an important cultural heritage which has left its mark in various ways in this distinct corner of Epirus. It is set on the western shore of the lovely Lake Pamvotis, and framed by the impressive mountain range that turns lilac at sunset. While there, take a walk through the old city’s alleys, climb up to the citadel of Its Kale or visit the famous silversmiths workshops and learn about this old art of crafting silver.
At Kastro, there is Aslan Pasha’s palace and mosque which was built in 1618 and today houses the municipal museum. Right beside it, stands the extraordinary Fotis Rapakousis Museum with rare heirlooms and weapons from pre-revolutionary times until the National Resistance. At lunch time, head to the waterfront, where young people, as Ioannina is a lively student town, as well as locals enjoy their coffee and food at the fine lakeside restaurants and cafes.
Perama Cave: The village of Perama has one of the most beautiful caves in Greece and it is just 5km away from the city. The cave was discovered accidentally in 1940 and it consists of several successive halls and corridors, stalactites, stalagmites and impressive columns in marvelous clusters. It occupies an area of 14,800 sq.m. and the tourist route is a total of 1,100 meters.
Explore Nisi (Island): Take the boat trip to Nisi which is no more than 10 minutes. There, you can visit the house where Ali Pasha was killed and which has been turned to a museum, as well as the old monasteries that once constituted a living spiritual and religious hub of Hellenism. No cars or other motorized vehicles are allowed on the island making it therefore an ideal place to take leisurely walks.