A day trip up into the Mountains via the Katara to Ioannina Mountain Pass


View of snow capped mountains in the distanceWhilst sitting on our balcony of Pension Arsenis in Meteora we could see a range of Alp-like snow-capped mountains beyond the Meteora rocks in the distance, and had read about how the mountain pass from Katara to Ioannina can be closed to all but vehicles with chains on their tyres for 5 months of the year. It was another warm and sunny day. Surely the snow would be just about gone by now?

We took the road north out of Meteora which passes another crop of 'rooms to let' signs and campsites, then as the town peters out, a shallow pebble lined river lies glinting to the left of the road. This looked like an ideal place for children to paddle and to picnic.

The views of mountains beyond MeteoraAt the Mourgkani junction we took the road to Metsovo which rapidly rises upwards. It's a good road, used by heavy good vehicles, with numerous places to pull in and enjoy the view.

The reddish soil of the hillsides is covered with scrub, and as we drove and passed through small ramshackle villages, the road continued to climb, and what we initially considered good views earlier on were continually surpassed as we travelled higher into the mountains.