Nature in Greece
Information about Nature in Greece
The nature of Greece has a rich diversity. Located on the crossroads of three continents (Europe, Africa, and Asia), the landscape of the country has been largely affected by the close regions and hosts a variety of flora and fauna.
Two-thirds of the country is mountainous and about 25% of the total surface is covered with forests. These forests mostly consist of fir, oaks, poplars, plane trees and bushes. Some distinguish as aesthetic forests, like the Virgin Forests of Rodopi in northern Greece, the Oak Forest in Foloi Peloponnese and the Black Fir Forest in Kefalonia. For protection from human activity, some regions have been declared as National Parks.
The territory of Greece is largely composed of limestone, which is why many underground caves have been formed. Particularly the caves with stalactites and stalagmites are a miracle of nature.
There are species of flora and fauna in the forests, caves, and gorges of Greece. In fact, more than 6,000 plant species have been recorded in the country and 750 of them can be found only within the boundaries of the Greek land. The fauna is a rare mixture of European, Asian and African species. Many species are endemic, while others are migratory, particularly bird species that stop in Greece on their way from northern to southern countries.
These migratory species create unique ecosystems in the lakes and river deltas where they stop. During that time, the lakes constitute wonderful places for bird watching and environmental research. The rivers in Greece are relatively small but turbulent, therefore they allow extreme sports activities, like rafting, canoeing or river trekking.
The variety of Greek nature offers a delightful sight. The best seasons to visit are in autumn and spring, where the colors are wonderful and the weather is mild. This is also the time when countryside farms are getting busy with agricultural works and occasionally allow volunteers to help and learn. Agrotourism is developing gradually but steadily in Greece, as it allows visitors to become familiar with farming activities, local culture and daily life in the countryside.