Mount Olympus refuges
Mount Olympus is an attraction both for tourists as well as mountaineers from all over the world. It is the most popular destination among the Greek mountains with more than 150,000 visitors entering the National Park only from the east side. The National Park Service has only one checkpoint along the road that leads from Litochoro to Prionia, so the exact number of visitors is not well documented since many people enter the National Park year round and from other sides of the mountain as well. The increasing popularity of the mountain is evident from the large number of international visitors (about 70% of the total number) resulting in the construction of totally 9 refuges since the 1950’s. In additions to those refuges there are also 6 bivouac rooms located along the least popular routes.
Refuge “Spilios Agapitos”
It belongs to the Greek Mountaineering & Climbing Association (EOOA, www.eooa.gr) and is located in 2060m of elevation along the European trail E4. Today it is the second largest and one of the most luxurious mountain huts of Greece, a result of more than 50 years of efforts put up by the Greek Mountaineering and Climbing Federation members, namely Mr Kostas Zolotas, the hut guardian for more than 50 years. The initial building was constructed as a logging cabin in 1930. It capacity is 120 people, services provided include lodging, dinning, toilettes, rescue sevices. It provides easy access to the summits of Skolio (2912m) and Mytikas (2918m) through the E4 trail, the most popular route on the mountain. The refuge is open from mid May to end of October.
Refuge SEO “ Giosos Apostolidis”
Named after the prolific mountaineer Giosos Apostolidis who during the 1950’s had established numerous new routes and maintained many of the trails that lead today to the upper mountain. The refuge is located on the Plateau of Muses between the summits of Toumba and Profitis Ilias at an altitude of 2700m. The refuge belongs to the Mountaineering Club of Thessaloniki (SEO) and has a capacity of 100 people. Facilities include a well organized restaurant, toilettes and lodging. It is open from June to the beginning of October.
Contact number: +30 2310-224 710 or +30 6932 367998. Website: www.seooreivaton.gr
Refuge at Petrostrouga location
Still under construction. It is located at an altitude of 1950m along the trail from Gortsia to the Plateau of Muses. There is a bivouc room in the base floor with 8 beds and very few blankets that is open year round. (More information: National Park Service. telephone: +30 – 23520-83000).
Refuge Christos Kakkalos
It belongs to the Greek Mountaineering & Climbing Federation (www.eooa.gr) and is located at the eastern margin of the Plateau of Muses at an elevation of 2650m. It was named after Christos Kakkalos the Olympus hunter and guide who together with the Swiss climbers Fred Boissonnas and Daniel Baud Bovy made the first recorded ascent to Olympus highest peak Mytikas on the 2nd of August in 1913. It has a capacity of 25 people and offers lodging, food and toilettes. It is open from mid May to end of October and from December to mid April.
Contact number: +30 6937 – 361689. Website: www.olympus-climbing.gr
Refuge “Dimitris Bountolas”
Named after one of the Greece’s best alpinists, who died during an avalanche accident on Annapurna South in October 1985. It belongs to Thessaloniki Alpine & Ski Club (EOS). It is located along the main road from Litochoro to Prionia. Even though a relatively big building it has a capacity of only 30 people, mostly working as a restaurant. It is open year round, but during the winter season (November – April) it is open only during weekends and holidays (Christmas, Easter). The area near the refuge is been excessively used as a pragliding take off spot. Contact number: +30 23520 84100. Website: www.eosthessalinikis.gr
The refuge of Vrysopoules is located on the south side of the mountain at an elevation of 1800m. Its capacity is about 25 people and has no permanent stuff. The special thing with this refuge is that it’s location being within the Special Forces military camp so prior to any planned trip there should be a contact with the military camp (telephone: +3024930-62163 or contact the Alpine Club of Elassona at +3024930-23467). The particular refuge (together with the bivouac rooms of Kostas Migotzidis and Agios Antonios) is an identical spot for ski mountaineering excursions to the summits of Skolio (and then to Mytikas), Kalogeros and to Megali Gourna.
Refuge “Krevatia” near the village of Vrontou
This refuge is located in the end of the gravel road starting from the village of Vrontou. Its capacity is 20 people and is located at an altitude of 950m, having spectacular views to the north face of the mountain. There is a very scenic network of trails starting from the particular refuge, trails that lead also to the Plateau of Muses (Route Barbalas Ridge, www.dion.gr Network of paths of North Olympus). In additions there are many ountain bike routes as well as sport climbing routes, making the refuge an identical destination for many different activities. It is open during all weekends of the year.
More information Mount Olympus National Park Service (www.olympusfd.gr, www.dion.gr , Guards cell phone: +30 6978 278548)
Refuge in Koromilies site (Leptokarya side)
A new refuge not yet in operation located on the south east side of the mountain. Its elevation is approximately 950m. (More information: Municipality of Mount Olympus, Contact number: +30 23520 31242).
Refuge in Koromilia, Dion
A new constructed refuge on the north side of the mountain. Not in operation yet. It can be reached either by the gravel road starting from the city of Dion (through Agios Konstantinos) and ending at the refuge. Its elevation is about 1000m. Alternatively it can be reached from the trail starting from Agios Konstantinos through the Orlias stream, one of the best places of the mountain for canyoning (www.canyoning.gr). In addition from this refuge there is a nice trail reaching Petrostrouga and from there to the Plateau of Muses. (More information: Mount Olympus National Park Service, www.olympusfd.gr, Telephone: +30 23520 83000 and also Municipality of Dion, www.dion.gr, Telephone: +30 23513 51000).