26 June 2022.

Vassiliki, Cycling & Moun...

Vassiliki, although famous as a wind and watersports destination is also a great location for mountain biking. The groves, plantations and hillsides that surround the waterside village conceal numerous tracks not unlike Landrover tracks in the UK. These tracks can be pretty crumbly and are often strewn with sizable rocks and the occasional sharp thorn so punctures are not uncommon. C’est la mountain biking!

The downhill biking is never really technical although the looseness of some of the track surfaces can prove a challenge and certainly some of the bigger rocks are obstacles to be avoided. The uphill riding can be – if you want it to be – pretty demanding, especially in the heat of the Mediterranean sun. But the uphill struggle is definitely worth the spectacular views afforded from the hill tops.

It is possible to experience some non-taxing cycles by sticking to the olive groves just back from the beach. Here the trails are flat and mostly of an even surface. The greatest challenge is in fact spotting the “stealth nannies”. Stealth nannies is a term coined by local seasonaires and mountain bike guides to describe locals of around pensionable age who are known to suddenly appear round corners riding a moped with the engine turned off. It caught me out more than once!

For those more interested in bicycle touring, Levkas is riddled with quiet country lanes and old mule tracks. The off-road riding environment provides scenic cross country cycle routes through woodland, plantations and on rugged hillsides with tremendous views to be had and fantastic secluded beaches to be found. The sweat is definitely worth it!

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