For Pelion fall is a season of wonders. The trees turn red and yellow, the spiky balls of chestnuts open up and fall on the ground creating a thick carpet, the forest abounds with mushrooms and the olive harvest begins. This is the time for long strolls on the Pelion trails and a cup of mountain tea.
1. Long walks
There’s no better time to enjoy a hike on the Pelion trails than during fall. Not only are the slopes colorful and dramatic this time of the year, but the cooler days make for perfect walking conditions. For a moderate hike, take the trail from Drakeia to Agios Lavrentios, from Chania to Zagora or from Vizitsa to Pinakates to enjoy the leaves turning.
2. Apple season
In September, the mountain dresses up and puts on its red jewelry. The beauty of the well-trimmed apple trees loaded with shiny red apples is almost surreal. If you want to see it in its best moment, come at the end of September. You can find apple trees above Drakeia, on the road to Neochori and, of course, on the east side of the mountain near Zagora. Apples, firikia and apple cider are sold everywhere from roadside stands to the village mini markets. The Starking Delicious apples from Zagora are products with protected designation of origin as are the firikia, the small and delicate local apples.
3. It’s time for some hot Pelion soup!
This is the season for some hot and homemade soup: lemon goat soup, pumpkin soup, bean soup (a local specialty) and of course trahanas. As soon as the weather gets cooler, these dishes reappear on the tavern menus and we all realize how much we had missed them.
4. Foliage colors
In the fall, Pelion transforms into a feast of yellow, red and orange. The best time to catch the changing leaves is mid-October through mid-November, when the mountain’s oak and beech trees blaze into countless shades of orange. The last days of the leaves are full of light and color, a celebration of letting go.
5. Fewer visitors than summer
Pelion villages, even those high up on the mountain, are usually packed with tourists during the summer months. Once the summer holidays are over, most villages are much quieter and your travel experience more authentic.
6. Mountain tea is back!
With the first chilly days the fireplaces in the coffee shops and bars get started and it’s the time to enjoy the first cup of mountain tea of the season. Pelion café-bars are open all year round, but that cozy ambiance is only found during the colder months.
7. Roasted chestnuts
When October arrives, head to the city of Volos and look for the chestnut braziers on the main streets. The roasted chestnut vendors appear on the city streets just as soon as there's a chill in the air. They are masters of roasting and their chestnuts come off their shell super easily. Chestnuts are the most nutritious street snack! Before you leave, don’t forget to buy some of the big Pelion chestnuts to cook back home.
8. Mushroom foraging
It’s time to meet the beautiful tall ladies of the Pelion forest, the gourgoulianes.The gourgoulianes, because they are easy to spot, are the perfect mushrooms to introduce yourself to mushroom foraging. Several hotel owners organize mushroom foraging tours in the chestnut and oak forests. Bring your basket and learn how to distinguish edible mushrooms and also how to cook them.
9. The entire beach is yours!
The water in the Pagasitikos Bay remains warm until the end of October. Even in November there are days that are ideal for swimming. The August jelly fish say goodbye when September arrives, and the beaches are quiet, clean and most often all yours!
10. Olive harvest
Fall is a period of intense agricultural activity for the Pelion peninsula. Olive harvest starts early in October with the green Pelion olives being collected first. The olive presses on the main coastal road are full of pick-up trucks and farmers unloading crates with olives. Olive harvesting is a source of joy and pride for the locals and it’s an activity you will not want to miss. To experience yourself this sacred agricultural activity, join us on our Pelion Olive Oil Experience tour.