Municipality of Xylokastro
A trip to the past
The Municipality of Xylokastro – Evrostini is located on the coastline of the Corinthian Gulf and in the foothill of Ziria. The variety that Xylokastro offers along with its location – in the middle of the national road Athens – Patras - make it an exceptional destination for every season.
Visitors can enjoy a walk on the coastline of Xylokastro, with the perfect view of the area or have a great mountainous adventure in the nature.
The verdant forest of “Pefkias” is refreshing its visitors with a cooling breeze, and by walking it through, visitors get to know what Karyotakis loved there and where Sikelianos built his summerhouse. On the other hand, the picturesque paths of Flabouritsa in Trikala, invite all the nature lovers to discover the mythical mountain of Hermes. The magical natural landscape of this municipality completes the circle of picturesque villages in Evrostini.
According to Mythology, Hermes led the stolen cattle of Apollo in Mavro Oros and there found the turtle, from the shell of which he stretched some strings and made the first lyre, which he gave to Apollo as a gift for stealing the cattle.
Xylokastro took its name by wooden barracks, placed in a hill near to Sythas river and it operated as an observatory. From there, the guard had visual contact with the castles in Zemeno and Pellini, could check every move in the Corinthian Gulf and monitor the port in Aristonautes. When they saw something, they informed the other castles through smoke signals. Locals named this castle “Xylokastro”, which in Greek means wooden castle, and the whole region was named after it. During the 18th century, the region had a very few houses, which were used to store products and they were owned mostly by people from Trikala. The region used to be at its greatest part a dense forest and “Pefkias” is what’s left today.
The whole region of Evrostini was a crucial spot during the Byzantine Empire, Venetian occupation of parts of Greece and also during the Greek War of Independence. The region has shown a lot of chieftains, such as Zacholitis or Zinis Christos and Panagiotakis Geraris. Proof to the fact that the region was important during war, are the lots of hidings and caves that exist there.
Zacholi was set on fire twice, once in 1823, because of the fight between politicians and military men, and once again in 1825, when Ibrahim Pasha passed through the village, from which the inhabitants saved themselves by hiding in the caves around the area.
After 1828, when Greece was declared an independent nation, the region became soon a provincial center with rich animal husbandry and agriculture.
During 1923 -1940, Derveni flourished in a commercial way, with many ships sailing abroad straight from Derveni, full of goods.