Mount Tymfi (Pindos) Thru-Hike Part 3 – Dragon Lake (Drakolimni)

This is the third (of the four) part of the Mount Tymfi (Pindos) Thru-Hike. In case you haven’t checked the first part and second part, feel free to check it out here:

Mount Tymfi (Pindos) Thru-Hike Part 1 – Kapesovo – Mezaria Gorge – Vikos Canyon – Mikro Papingo

Mount Tymfi (Pindos) Thru-Hike Part 2 – ASTRAKA REFUGE – ASTRAKA PEAK


Drakolimni (“Dragon Lake”) is the name of several alpine lakes in northwestern Greece Epirus region: the ones in mountain Tymfi and Smolikas are the most widely known. According to local folktales the lakes used to be inhabited by dragons who fought each other by throwing pines and rocks and thus created the peculiar landscape and gave their names to the lakes.

The first lake resides at an altitude of 2050m above sea level, on the mountain range of Tymfi, in Vikos–Aoös National Park. It is overlooked by the nearby peaks of Ploskos and Astraka. At 5 hours walking distance from the village of Papingo, the lake is a popular trekking destination in the Vikos–Aoös National Park. The lake is inhabited by a species of alpine newt, called drakakia by the locals and, according to local sources, the newts’ resemblance to small dragons gives the lake its distinctive name.

We started our hike towards the Drakolimni (Dragon Lake) from the Astraka Mountain hut. The first part of the path is a nice downhill that overlooks the Xeroloutsa lake that is dry during the summer months.

Trail towards Drakolimni
Surrounding views
Astraka Peak as seen from the path towards Drakolimni
Reaching Drakolimni

After about 50 minutes to 1 hour, we have finally reached the magnificent Drakolimni (Dragon Lake) of Tymfi. The view towards the lake with the background peaks is breathtaking. The feeling that you are above 2.000 meters above sea level and you can see and experience such a beauty, unique. As soon we arrived at the lake, we left our backpacks on the shore and we have walked around the lake and from each part you had something nice and different to see. Bellow some photos of the views:

First view of Drakolimni (Dragon Lake)
Surrounding peak
Drakolimni (Dragon Lake) & nearby peak
Drakolimni (Dragon Lake) & Astraka


Gamila peak in the background
Gamila Peak

Once we have fully enjoyed the views of the lake, we searched for a spot on where we could set our camp. On the shore of the lake there are not many spots, though, we have managed to find a great location where we could cook, sleep and of course experience Drakolimni. On Drakolimni I used the Sierra Designs Lightning 2 tent.

Our tent from above
Sierra Designs Lightning 2 tent


Sierra Designs Lightning 2 tent looking to Drakolimni
View from the tent.
Sunset view

A couple of information about the “Drakakia” of Drakolimni (Dragon Lake). The alpine newt (Ichthyosaura alpestris) is a newt of the salamander order Caudata (or Urodela) in the class of amphibians. It was formerly known as Triturus alpestris. Inside the lake there were hundreds if not thousands of these little salamanders. They are not dangerous and although in the photo bellow might look big, are rather small little creatures. Bellow a photo of the “Drakakia” (Alpine newt).

Alpine Newt (Drakakia)

In the coming days, there will be the 4th part final part of the Mount Tymfi (Pindos) Thru-Hike. On this 4th part you will see the highest peak of Tymfi, Gamila I, Gamila II, Stoma Peak, Loutsa Robozi, Megas Lakos etc. Make sure to come back to this blog to see the exciting final part.

In case you haven’t checked the first part and second part, feel free to check it out here:

Mount Tymfi (Pindos) Thru-Hike Part 1 – Kapesovo – Mezaria Gorge – Vikos Canyon – Mikro Papingo

Mount Tymfi (Pindos) Thru-Hike Part 2 – ASTRAKA REFUGE – ASTRAKA PEAK


15 thoughts on “Mount Tymfi (Pindos) Thru-Hike Part 3 – Dragon Lake (Drakolimni)

    1. Thanks for the kind and nice comment.

      This multiday trip on Mount Tymfi, in my personal opinion is much nice to be done in the month of May, where there is still snow on the high peaks, wild flowers and green alpine fields all over. Also, in terms of heat and temperature it is more advisable to go there in May.

      From the other side, I am very glad that I have had the opportunity to enjoy this beautiful mountain, during summer time.

      The fourth and final part will be uploaded in the beginning of next week, so stay tuned!

      Finally, again, thanks for dedicating the time to read about the Thru-Hike of Mount Tymfi (Pindos)


  1. Pingback: Mount Tymfi (Pindos) Thru-Hike Part 4 – GAMILA – STOMA – MEGAS LAKOS -TSEPELOVO – KAPESOVO – Olympus Mountaineering

    1. Indeed the story is very nice.
      This lake becomes a magical place when the surrounding environment is covered with snow. This winter I might visit again the area and if I will do so, I will post it here so I can share it with the rest of the followers of this blog.

      Liked by 1 person

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  8. Gérard DURAND

    Bonjour, je ne connais des Zagoria (à peu près tous les villages) que les pierres des rues, des maisons et des places; je connais les ponts à une ou plusieurs arches. Je vais régulièrement dans ces villages magiques. Mais je ne suis pas marcheur (problème cardiaque) et je vous remercie de cette relation de voyage dans les montagnes. Je me suis enthousiasmé à votre lecture. J’aimerai être jeune et vous accompagner. Merci encore. Gérard


    1. Hi Gerard,

      Thank you for reading through the Olympus Mountaineering Blog and great to know you are very familiar with the Zagori region.

      Let’s also hope that at some point you will also be able to enjoy the mountains of the region in an easy hiking pace so it can not be harmful for the heart.

      Thank you again for the kind comment.


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