Dadia Forest - Soufli
Dadia lies on the edge of a big forest which occupies 73.000 stremmata in the centre of the region. It has been declared protected area by international conventions and Greek Law. This is because numerous species cohabitate in this ecosystem including reptilians, mammals and most importantly big birds of prey. The peripheral protective zone covers 350.000 stremmata and it is overall a biotope of great environmental significance.
The area comprises one of the last remaining bird refuge in the whole of Europe. 36 out of the 38 species of diurnal birds of prey have been observed in the Dadia forest, especially the black vulture with a wing opening up to 3 meters, lives only here and in the respective colony in Spain.
Moreover, a great number of different species have been recorded here. They include 219 bird, 40 reptilian and 48 mammal species (wild boar, foxes, badgers, otters, roe deer, hares, wolves, bats, squirrels, etc). The flora includes wild flowers such as iris plants, paeonians, glandular plants and shrubs such as arbutus, heather, bushes, hazelnut and other big trees like pine, oak, willow, poplar, plane, maple trees, alder wood and carpinus betulus.
The financing for the protection of the forest comes from a combination of national policies and environmental programmes as well as WWF. Also, the council has set up a municipal venture in order to promote the eco-tourist centre that operates in Dadia.
The eco-tourist centre includes an information point with a permanent exhibition and video-slide projections, a 60-bed capacity guesthouse, a café and a gift shop. Also, a frequent mini-van service is available so that visitors can go up to the observatory in the forest to watch the birds feed in the trough with telescopes and binoculars.
Visitors can also use the excellently marked foot paths in order to trek up to the Giberna peak where they can enjoy the breath-taking scenery and get a bird’s-eye view of the whole area.