Mountain Pass to Ioannina


On our way back up the hill we stopped to take a look at the hole in the road. A nearby stream was the culprit for washing the road away. Tiny clumps of purple violets were scattered over the grass in the orchard beside it. There seemed to be something new to discover and enjoy each time we stopped.

Shrine by the roadside to mark the spot of the death of a loved one or a church nearby

Whilst driving in Greece, you will notice many small shrines by the side of the road. These are erected following the death of a loved one in an accident. They range from tin boxes on legs to concrete mini-churches, containing a candle or oil lamp, flowers, icons and sometimes a photograph of the person who has died.

The candles or oil lamps in these are often lit by a relative in the evenings. There are plenty of signs of strongly held and widespread Christian belief in Greece.

Many of the larger shrines, like the one above, are just markers to indicate that a church is nearby.

Snow poles mark the sides of the road where patches of bright orange wild crocus grace the melting snows

Slowly we drove back up the mountain and resumed our journey. The road navigates the other side of a horseshoe of mountains, and we eventually found ourselves travelling through pine woods at the snow line.

Here we discovered patches of orange crocus growing wild among the remnants of melting snow at the sides of the road, which was enough to inspire another photograph stop. There was also a disintegrating hairy white flower that looked very much like an Edelweiss.






Golden yellow crocuses growing wild at the side of the road