Koukos Walk Walk duration 2 ½ – 3 hrs depending on stops
The first three quarters of an hour of the walk is in the right hand valley on the traditional kalderimi (stone path) on a winding ascent with back views across the village and of Mt.Athos. Then we have a steep scramble (5-10 minutes) across broken rocks where the municipality blasted a road (aborted project for which they were prosecuted) across the traditional path. We rejoin the path to ascend to the outer wall of the settlement as mentioned in the archeological report. From here we turn left across a pasture (covered in cowslips in the spring) and through olives to a large phallic rock on the headland overlooking the village and Mt.Athos. (Here it is also possible to watch the sunrise above Mt Athos very early in the morning – 6 a.m. start – and have breakfast – see photos). We then backtrack across the pasture to the site of the settlement which amazingly still has remnants of the walls left exposed after the dig. We continue through the trees to the site of the graveyard hidden behind large mysteriously shaped boulders. Here we find the pyre and graves; some left open having been exposed during the dig – see photos. This is an Early Iron Age Settlement end 10th –end 8th centuries B.C. 98 tombs were uncovered in the 6 digs during 1987-1992. I have some of the papers and notes showing maps and some of the items found. There is then a goat path leading out from the back of the graveyard, again through interesting boulder forms. We follow this towards a goat pen, but cut across to the right before the pen to rejoin the blasted track, an easy walk back towards the village for about 15 minute with views again ofMt.Athos. We then find ourselves confronted by a labyrinth of boulders with goat tracks winding through them. Children love this part of the walk where they can sometimes slide down the boulders and pick their way back down the hillside hiding from each other.