Although Greece is synonymous with its islands and coastal beaches, often overlooked are the country’s amazing rivers where one can also enjoy a swim!
However, even in the rivers of the country you can find amazing crystal-clear waters, dense nature and river bank areas, sometimes more spacious then beaches, that offer amazing river swimming experiences, which can be combined with picnics.
Some trekking may be required to get to a number of rivers but the level of satisfaction gained will more than compensate.
Travel has comprised seven Greece’s best rivers for swimming.
The Acheloos river, in western Greece, begins at a magical spot at the top of Mount Lakmos and covers the regions of Trikala, Karditsa, Arta, Evrytania and Etoloakarnania.
This river’s banks are covered with white pebbles. Many parts along the river are terrific for swimming. Its best-known swimming spots are the Acheloos Valley, at a 700-metre altitude, and the Glystra-Golfari bridge close to Terpna in the Arta region.
Besides swimming, visitors may fish, take therapeutic mud baths and, at certain points, enjoy natural hydro-massage.
If you visit any of the aforementioned regions during the summer, make it a point to reach the Acheloos river for swimming in the stream’s turquoise waters, surrounded by marvellous nature.
The Aoos river, crossing northwestern Greece, offers numerous swimming options amid lush settings anywhere between the Konitsa stone bridge and the Bourazani bridge.
If you are a little more daring, lovely swimming spots may also be found within the gorge, from Konitsa to the Stomiou monastery.
The waters at this section of the river run stronger, but their intensity depends on the season. Great swimming spots may also be found close to the Aoos river.
The water is typically cold at all the country’s rivers, but the Voidomatis river, in northwestern Greece, is probably the coldest of all. Keep in mind that this stream’s water level drops considerably in the summer.
Even so, the Voidomatis river remains a fantastic place to go swimming because the surrounding nature is sensational.
The Voidomatis river’s bridge linking Aristi with Papingo, just prior to a series of bends leading to Megalo Papingo, is the easiest and best-known spot for swimming at this river.
You will find plenty of spaces to settle, relax and enjoy the cool river waters at this river section. You may also wish to walk further and discover other fine spots. A point at the Kleidonia stone bridge, offering swimming under tall plane trees, is exceptional.
If interested in trekking, start from Mikro Papingo and enter the lush gorge with rock formations to reach Kolybithres, a magical setting with tall rocks.
Though you may cover part of the distance by vehicle, trekking through the gorge admittedly offers a special experience.
The Venetikos river in the Grevena region, northern Greece, is another fine spot for swimming. It features lush nature and crystal-clear waters. Numerous points along this river are ideal.
They include the bridge at Eleftherohori; the Spanos stone bridge area; as well as the river’s confluence with the Aliakmonas river.
Choose the spot of your liking and settle under plane-tree shade or at spectacular rock formations.
The area at the Portitsa stone bridge, at the entrance of the synonymous gorge, is superb for sunbathing. The water is too shallow for swimming here.
The Acheron river is simply amazing. Though the river carries a dark past, often depicted, in Greek mythology, as the entrance to the underworld, its waters and the surrounding nature are superb.
The river section at the village Glyki offers many ideal spots. The most impressive spot of all is at the river’s source, slightly above the village.
Here, a plane-tree forest is spread on both sides of the river’s turquoise waters. Also enter the gorge at this part of the river, definitely worth seeing.
The Kalamas river, the second-biggest in the Epirus region, northwestern Greece, passes by the outskirts of the village Ekklisohori in the Ioannina area.
The area southwest of the village features a number of plateaus amidst trees, ideal for swimming in the river’s cold waters.
The setting includes wild oak trees, plane trees, as well as a choice between pebble or sand-covered river beds. There are lots of fish here, too.
If you find the waters too cold for swimming, you may want to go fishing instead.
At the village Lithino, Theogefyro, an amazing natural bridge, is an ideal spot for swimming in the Kalamas river.
The Nestos river, primarily known for its delta’s exceptional wetland, is also ideal for swimming in summer. The river’s section from Stavropouli to Toxotes offers a series of incredible little beach areas for swimming.
Within this stretch, an area known as Tempi Tou Nestou, featuring towering rocks and amazing nature, is especially impressive and perfect for swimming and picnics. The short walk to this point is well worth the effort.