866 – "Terirem": film about Athos

This film is from 2009: the singing is by the monks of Simonospetra. The film is dedicated to the Friends of Mount Athos Footpaths team 2009: I would be very pleased to find the results of the foothpath team on their internet site, because we can use an update !

And have a question for our readers: did anyone took the road from Filotheou-Karakalou to Agiou Pavlou and, to be more specific, does anyone know if the footpath between Kellia Agios Onoufriou and Dionysiou still excists ………..?
The path is drawn on an old Zwerger-map, see below!


Wim, 4-9

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36 Responses to 866 – "Terirem": film about Athos

  1. Dimitris says:

    I hope that your 2009 trip will be a success! 7 people this is quite a number! You should also book early the monasteries that you will be staying, as September is still regarded as high season.

  2. Josxe9 says:

    Nice Trips Wim!
    I really enjoy the pictures and the comments.
    Where are you read about Athosxb4 birds?
    Thanks for share your experience.

  3. Josxe9 says:

    Dear Friends, Ixb4m writing again from Argentina. Ixb4ve been confirmed my first visit to Athos for July 18th! I still have some queries:
    1-How much is a taxi from Karyes to Lavra? Is it easy to find one?
    2- Ixb4m planning to stay at Simonopetra, Lavra and Skiti Santa Ana. How many days in advance do I have to make reservations?
    3- In the book “the six thousands beards” by Ralph Brewster, I read about a monk who collected telescopes… Do you know about astronomical activities in Athos?
    4- Departure day on the fourth day is at 12 am… what time does the ferry get to Ouranopolis?
    Thank you for your help

  4. Dimitris says:

    Hi Jose,

    I hope that your first trip to Athos will be a success and that the mountain will live up to your expectations. Firstly let me say that I hope you are used to warm weather, because in mid-july the temperature will be in the mid/high thirties. Also, since it is the middle of the summer, there will be a lot of tourists around so it will be a bit more crowded than the rest of the year. Now let me answer your individual queries:

    1) You can find the mini-van to Lavra in the same square that the bus from Dafni arrives in Karyes. There will be other vans there as well, so ask which one goes to Lavra. The van will depart after 20 minutes or so. The idea is that the pilgrims going to Lavra will share the van-hire price. So if the van is full, it will cost you around 5 euros. If you are the only one going to Lavra it will cost you 70-80 euros! But as you are visiting in the middle of July, I guarantee that there will be plenty of others going to Lavra as well. In fact, find the van immediately cause it may fill up very soon.

    2) I would say start booking today to be on the safe side. For Simonopetra especially, it might be too late already. Be patient, because it may take a while before somebody peaks up the phone. And he may not speak good english. If you don’t find room in Simonopetra (which by the way is currently under rennovation), I strongly reccomend Docheiariou. It is a fantastic monastery. Check this site for more info:


    3)Sorry, but I don’t know anything about that, or how to find this information.

    4) It arrives around 14:15. The bus to Thessaloniki leaves at 14:30.

  5. Wim says:

    José, I read about the 105 bird species in: http://data.iucn.org/dbtw-wpd/edocs/2008-055.pdf, an article about protected landscapes (from page 51:see page 56 Natural heritage, no futher information about where he got this number 105 from).

    By the way, enjoy your trip in july. We hope to get some info/feedback afterwards.
    I do not have any info about telescopes on Athos, but it intresting to see if we can find it.
    greetings, Wim

  6. Herman says:

    Jose, In 1410 astronomers were working on the top of mount Athos. See this http://athos.web-log.nl/athos_agios_oros_/2006/11/aan_het_werk_op.html

  7. Josxe9 says:

    Dear Friends:
    Thank you very much for the information and assistance.
    About astronomy in Athos I ask:
    Where can I see the photo of John Mandeville with higher resolution?
    Could be write the link in british library?
    I simulated the sky, with a powerful software, with the coordinates of summit of Mount Athos in the year 1410.
    And working with the software informs me that four events occurred:

    1- A comet
    2- Total Lunar Eclipse
    3- Conjuncion: Jupiter-Moon-Mars
    4- Eclipse between Moon and mars.

    The interesting thing about this is that we may to ensure the month of the year that painted the picture,this would serve to confirm that event were seeing!
    Of the four I mentioned, the most interesting is the Total Lunar Eclipse is because of reform of the calendar!

  8. Josxe9 says:

    I made a video with the 1410 events!

  9. John says:

    Regarding the Agios Onoufriou – Dionysiou footpath, I will update you in a few days. I am going to Athos the day after tomorrow and I will attempt to cross that footpath if it still exists.

  10. Wim says:

    John thanks, I never got such a quit reply and generous help !

  11. michalis says:

    according to “odoiporikon agioreitou” there is a footpath which connects monastery of dionysiou and the main road agiou pavlou-antiathonas-filotheou. this path is parallel to aeropotamos (river). kellia of agios onoufrios is on your right hand and there is no on the map any footpath to and from these kellia

  12. Bertinos says:

    Dag Wim, de mensen die op het filmpje staan, zijn uit de regio Brussel-Leuven. Als je wil, kan ik je het e-mailadres bezorgen van Pieter (de meest enthousiaste deelnemer), maar dan niet via dit forum.

  13. evripidis says:

    Hi Wim
    I don’t know if it still interests you but I walked the distance from Filotheou to Dionysiou 2 years ago, based on the Zwerger map.It is a 4.30-hour terrific walk, first on a forest road for almost 3 hours and then on rocky footpath for 1.30 hours. Basically, you climb the road to Mt Antiathonas by carefully following the map and your instict (no signposts for diversions!), until you reach a sign that directs you towards St Paul from the north of the top of Mt Antiathonas. You don’t follow this, but you go south of Antiathonas top and then start descending, until (and this is critical) you turn right towards Onoufrios (see map) and not take the second turn to the right, descending parallel to Aeropotamos (which is extremely difficult and dangerous). Then the road becomes footpath, you reach a small church roughly prior to Onoufrios (from where you will never pass), and then problems begin: no foot path, just descend on the right side of a river. You have to be lucky as I have been to find the point where you will cross the river and take a clear small footpath that will lead you to Dionysiou after 1.15 hours.
    I hope this helps.

  14. Wim says:

    Hi Evripidis, thanks for this information, it is very helpfull! The route attracts me a lot, both because of its beauty and its adventures character. I think I found the trail on the Zwerger-map and I hope I can convince my fellow pilgrims to do this route, maybe the first part by car, because we start in Mylopotamus and 4.30 h is a long walk! Thanks agian !

  15. Wim says:

    Hoi Bertinos, leuk om te horen dat je de mensen uit de regio Leuven herkent! Iedereen die iets wil/kan leveren voor deze weblog kan dat altijd doen via het webformulier, waarmee je direct contact met me krijgt (NB: ik kocht vanmiddag een 8 gig kaartje voor mijn camera, dus ik hoop binnenkort ook wat filmpjes te kunnen laten zien!).

  16. John says:

    I returned from the mountain and I had a go at that footpath. Admittedly, I only walked up to a specific point, so I could get a panoramic view of Dionysiou monastery, and not all the way to the Ounoufriou cell. However, up to that point, the footpath was in excellent condition and it was 100% cobblestoned. I presume it must be in this condition at least until the cell. Here is the photo I took from the path. You can see the path itself in the bottom part of the picture: http://www.imageshack.gr/view.php?file=qv1ygglmgseupbld6efq.jpg

  17. Wim says:

    John, can I use you picture in our blog ? (and do you have more?) greetings Wim

  18. George says:

    Spectacular photo John, well done and wishing you many more to come.

  19. John says:

    Yes, go ahead and use it. No problem. Regarding more photos, this time I only took a handfull as I have photographed those monasteries in previous trips. Unforunately, I only have printed versions of those.

  20. Fremaki says:

    Just 2 points of, maybe, some interest :
    – 1) I’m one of the guys you see on the video… (guess which…) and I don’t live in Leuven-Brussels’ region 🙂
    – 2) yes the path to Agiou Onoufriou is all cobbled up to the kelli, quite steep but not dangerous (I have pictures from higher above) ; I didn’t go further…

  21. Fremaki says:

    Oh, I forgot : why don’t YOU ALL become members of the “Friends of Mount Athos” (if not yet so) and join the guys on the footpath’s working team in 2010 ???
    Let me know…

  22. Wim says:

    Fremaki, please tell us more about the 2010 footpath project of the FOMA.

  23. Fremaki says:

    Glad to see a positive reaction !
    In a nutshell, each year for almost 10 years now, a group of about 18 people go to the Holy Mountain for 2 weeks in order to keep the existing footpath open and to reopen lost ones, in as much as possible.
    The period is always in the weeks following Easter. Prerequisite is to become a member of the association (cheap !).
    You can find all the details at their website: “http://www.athosfriends.org/”.
    Feel free to ask any questions.

  24. Wim says:

    Fremaki, keeping the paths open or reopen lost ones helps us all, so I admire FOMA’s efforts: I’ve seen the new signs near Stravronikita! I have been member of FOMA for a couple of years (in the pre-internet era), and at that time paying a foreign bill/member fee was a lot of work. I’ll consider become a member again, allthough a two week stay on Athos is impossible for me (because of job and family).
    By the way, I am planning to show all paths I know on http://www.communitywalk.com/athosmap in the future. Wim

  25. Fremaki says:

    Hi Wim,
    Today, paying abroad is a breeze !
    As far as staying on Athos with FoMA’s team, even one week is very valuable: all there is to it, is to be there at the same time they are working and “filling in”, so to speak (I’ve been doing this for two years now).
    Would you recommand this endeavour to all the readers of this blog ? If so, don’t hesitate and promote it all around you.

  26. Dimitris says:

    That is a very nice and useful effort! I use the paths myself as much as I can, and it is nice to know that someone is actively trying to keep them open and in good condition. Also, it is very important to keep them clean from garbage for both aesthetic and fire hazzard reasons. I presume you clean them as well, right?

  27. Wim says:

    I have been cleaning the beautifull track between Antiathanos and Dionysiou (the Aeropotamus-path) with garden shears on my own last week. I even started removing large stones when I had to wait a couple of minutes for my compagnons. I will show you later with some pictures.

  28. Sotiris says:

    Hi guys,

    I am waiting eagerly for your report about the Dionysiou – Antiathonas trail. I have booked my visit to athos for 27 Nov. and I plan to do a GPS survey of the footpaths around Dionysiou, Simonopetra as part of my “Digital footpath preservation project” at vision.iti.gr/sotiris/routes/ (sorry only in Greek). Any information about the condition of the footpaths would be very useful to me.

    Best Regards,

  29. Wim says:

    I will try to give you an account of the trip in the near future, but in short I can tell you that we took the path along the Aeropotamos, starting not far from the dirt road to Ag. Pavlou. A steep, but beautifull route and not dangerous, as others indicated.
    gr Wim

  30. Sotiris says:

    Thanks, a lot. Then I will try first the Ag. Onoufrios branch and descent from Aeropotamos on my way down.

  31. Fremaki says:

    Sotiri (and everybody else),
    As you might allready know, you can find usefull information about Mount Athos’ footpath’s conditions here : http://www.athosfriends.org/footpaths/FootpathDescriptionsList.html as well as here : http://www.athosfriends.org/footpaths/FootpathsChart.html
    Eagerly waiting for your contribution when you come back…

  32. Sotiris says:

    Hi Guys,

    Just back from a wonderful trip to Athos and I successfully surveyed the footpaths from Dionysiou to Antiathonas.

    The second day we descended from the Aeropotamos trail. Indeed one of the most beautiful trails I have walked on mount Athos. There are a couple of tricky junctions and the path is a bit obscure in places but otherwise no problems here. Notice, that when you exit the path you walk for 100m towards the port on a dirt road and then you re-enter the path that has been now surfaced with concrete all the way to the monastery curved on the cliff on the left of the valley for an exhilarating 5 minute walk.

    Next day we climb up again on the Onoufrios trail. Until the kelia of Onoufrios there is a kalnterimi trail with maginificent views. The junction between Kelia and Antiathonas is also very clear with an old signpost. Then the path enters the forest and your reach another junction. The upper (right) trail is the old trail not visible on Zwerger map. We asked two loggers we found further on and they told as that it is blocked. We luckily took the left path that immediately decented to the river and started to climb with switch backs. A lot of imagination was required here since the path was narrow and covered with leaves, disappearing in a few places. Not for inexperienced hikers. Finally the path cleared and we came just a few meters bellow the road and the small chappel just as in the map. Now the trail does not exit to the road but descents right crosses the stream and exits on the road on the other side of the valley. Following the roads we reached the main ridge and easily climbed Antiathonas peak with magnificent views.

    Then we descended to Grigoriou via Ag. Theologos finding with great disappointment half of the path destroyed by the new ugly road constructed a couple of years ago.

    A will upload GPS tracks, maps and descriptions (in Greek) on my web site later this week.

  33. George F Australia says:


    Can you please share the URL of your website with us.


  34. Sotiris says:

    Hi George,

    The descriptions, are in http://vision.iti.gr/sotiris/routes/

    I broke down the trip into three segments:
    1. Zografou-Vatopediou-Pantokratoros
    2. Pantokratoros-Karyes-Grigoriou
    3. Dionysioy-Antiathonas

    Also, my companion traveler took a lot of photos, some of which you may found in

  35. Vasílis says:

    Two sites: a useful and a nice one, Sotíri!

  36. George F Australia says:

    Thanks Sotiris,

    Much appreciated.

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