Lake Kerkini and Alistrati Cave

What is included in Lake Kerkini and Alistrati Cave trek:

Day 1

Sofia – Alistrati Cave

Departure from Sofia at 7 a.m.

Duration – 5 hours.

We arrive at the cave before noon.

According to the National Geographic, this is one of the most beautiful caves in Europe. It is an interesting fact that there are stalactites and stalagmites coloured in different shades. The cave has rich flora.

Then, we travel to Lake Kerkini, also known as the lake of the flamingo and the pelican.

This is where we will spend the night.

It is on the territory of Aegean Macedonia in Greece, located between the mountains of Belasitsa and Krusha. This is the third most significant birdwatching lake in Europe.

The water zone comprises 25 km from the Struma (Strymonas) River and 10 km form the Butovska (Kerkinitis) River. The span of the lake changes according to the seasons form 50 to 75 km2. The lake is a real treasure for ornithologists and bird admirers. The richest abundance of birds is in April, when many migratory species, including the greater flamingo, pass by.

The area boasts huge biological diversity – the vertebrates are about 400 and 70% of them are birds.

Over 300 species of birds could be described for the whole year.

Here is a link to the bird species that we might encounter:

The Richness of Kerkini

Day 2

After breakfast point our cameras and binoculars in search of local feathered dwellers.

In the swampy areas of the lake the following specimens may be observed all through the year: herons, diurnal birds of prey and songbirds, the pygmy cormorant, northern lapwing.

The neighbouring hills are the nesting territory for the booted eagle, the short-toed snake eagle, the lesser spotted eagle, as well as the northern goshawk, the black kite and the common buzzard. In the thick shrubs we could notice different species of blackcaps.

The Dalmatian pelican and the pygmy cormorant, which are endangered species, spend the winter here.

The water pipit, the woodcock, and the greenfinch could be seen on the shores.

Highlights: caves, birds, photography.

In the late afternoon we leave back for Sofia.


For the trek you will need insurance, dry food and water.

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