Zagorochoria villages: I love this area of rural Greece, the mountains, the stone bridges, and nature, which makes you slow down and breathe more deeply.
Zagorochoria is a complex of stone villages in Epirus, very close to my hometown, Ioannina.
Last Christmas, in 2016, we were searching for a new, unique place to stay for a couple of days. This would be our very first trip of 2017 so we wanted to set the tone correctly from the beginning. I found “Anemi guesthouse” on George Pittas’ website, www.mygreekgastronomyguide.com . George Pittas has been involved widely in promoting the gastronomical heritage of Greece and I trust him when he proposes a place, even though I haven’t met him personally yet.
Anemi’s rooms looked really cosy and there was a promise of traditional Greek breakfast so we booked it. The village where it is located, Kato Pedina, is still under the radar but I knew the location was a great base to explore the surroundings.
And we were so happy with our choice this time around! Lila and Pavlos are great hosts, having left the city life in Athens behind several years ago to settle in Kato Pedina village, where they created Anemi. It’s much more than a simple guesthouse. As the website states, their hope was for Anemi to be “a place where interesting people will share interesting ideas!”
And we believe they have succeeded in doing so.
The perfectly renovated old cottage is a place of meeting. Never again have I met and interacted so much with all of the other visitors at a place we are staying. Maybe that’s because the kitchen area, where you can also find the breakfast, dining and lounge room, is soulful. It invites you to come in, spend some quality time, marvel at the lovely interior décor and just engage in conversation with anyone that happens to be there at the time.
The breakfast, as promised, was excellent: homemade loukoumades with honey and walnuts (Greek mini-doughnuts), a variety of homemade marmalades, and our favourite pie with feta cheese, which is called kasiopita or alevropita.
We also had dinner here once when Pavlos cooked for us a simple yet delicious pasta dish with local mushrooms.
We stayed at Anemidi room (Anemidi means “Little Spinning Wheel”), the smallest room of the guesthouse, which has a perfect size for a couple and our favorite mattress for a luxurious sleep, Cocomat.
We dreamed of sitting outside on the terrace during summer; we walked around the quiet village under the winter clouds and promised to return the soonest possible.
Anemi Country Cottage Inn
Kato Pedina, Zagori, Greece