top of page

Wild Swimming in Northern Greece

For as long as I can remember, I have loved to swim. I have always felt an affinity to the water, despite growing up nowhere near an ocean. During our youth, my brother and I spent hours upon hours swimming in the creek by our family's cabin in the mountains of Pennsylvania's Allegheny National Forest. We didn't know that swimming outdoors was anything special; we'd been 'wild swimming' long before it was trendy! Imagine my delight, then, when my husband introduced me to a beautiful wild swimming spot just a short drive from his childhood home!

Understandably, when most people think of Greece, rivers probably aren't the first bodies of water that come to mind. It makes sense, considering the country's impressive variety of stunning beaches - scenes so picturesque that they grace the covers of travel magazines year after year. While the word 'Greece' is often synonymous with the crystal-clear waters of the country's oceans, its plentiful rivers are often overlooked by visitors. Many of Greece's rivers offer the opportunity to swim in beautiful waters as well as explore bountiful forests and hiking trails.

View of swimming area.

The swimming spot my husband introduced me to is called Haliacmon River (the H is silent when pronounced) at Nestorio, and it's located near Kastoriá in northern Greece. It hosts the well-known 'River Party' annually, which is a huge music event where large crowds gather together and camp out for multiple days to enjoy good music and good company. The event is one of the largest of its kind in the area, if not in Greece. The attendees have the chance to attend multiple concerts and partake in plenty of fun activities, including Zumba, Tai Chi, and Yoga. This year, such performers as Helena Paparizou & Locomondo are on the lineup of performers!

Promotional poster for 2023 River Party festivities.

The water here is clean and clear - people of all ages come with their beach towels and swim when it gets hot outside. Although we were not bold enough to jump from so high, we saw plenty of teenagers jumping off of the tall rocks and plunging straight into the water below. There are spots where it's deep as well as shallow spots that you can walk through wearing shorts. We had an amazing time swimming here! The water was so refreshing and beautiful that we spent almost an entire day at this location just taking in our surroundings.

An image of a swimming spot in Northern Greece showcasing a beautiful mountain background, bright blue skies, and bluish green waters.
The picture-perfect colors of Nestorio.

After we finished swimming, we took advantage of the surrounding space and walked around to check out local walking paths and nature trails. This is a great spot for someone who wants to get a taste of some of the beauty that northern Greece has to offer. In many ways, this spot reminded me of the forest near our family cabin in Pennsylvania. It's refreshing to think about how people all around our world partake in similar activities like wild swimming. I always think this serves as a reminder that we all have more in common than we might initially realize. Enjoying the day immersed in nature somehow made the trip even more relaxing. Don't get me wrong, I love a good beach day but there was something about not having to worry about paying for beach chairs or packing up a beach bag that made this a memorable experience for us.

So, what do you think? Will you be adding wild swimming to your Greece itinerary?

1 Comment

Sep 03, 2023

Rantevou at the next River Party of Nestorio Kastorias August 2024!!!

bottom of page