“We’re having lunch tomorrow at Palaios Panteleimonas before heading back to Thessaloniki.” said The Greek Mister as he gulped down the last drop of his tsipouro.
“Pantele-what?” I asked.
“It’s the place that you showed me from Marissa’s blog.”
He does listen and pay attention! Holy crap!
A very long time ago, I came across this blog post of My Greece, My Travels called A Weekend in Pieria and as I learnt that it’s so close from The Greek Mister’s city, I asked him why he hasn’t brought me there ever and all I heard back from him was a grunt. You see, he’s not very well-informed of his own place (although if you ask him where’s the best bar is he’d be able to tell you) and he’s practically seeing new places in Greece at the same time as myself.
I’ve totally forgotten about that place until he told me that we’re headed there for lunch. We were in Leptokarya with his friends, visiting another friend who owns a taverna by the beach. From here, Palaios Panteleimonas is only 20 minutes away by driving so a short visit for lunch was feasible.
It was hot the next day, I think we brought the heat from Qatar to Greece that day. I could feel beads of sweat forming on my forehead after only 5 minutes of walking towards the entrance of Palaios Panteleimonas. I let The Greek Mister and his friends walk ahead of me as I took millions of photos at the entrance. I do this everytime we travel together, I leave him somewhere to have coffee or beer as I explore the area and take photos as I please. Palaios Panteleimonas already looked good from the outside, I’ve never imagined that it could be more beautiful inside the village itself.
Located at the foothills of the famous Mount Olympus, Palaios Panteleimonas offers a unique and stunning view of the Thermaikos Gulf with the added bonus of being rich in fauna. Walking around it wasn’t a difficult feat even during summer as you get the fresh mountain breeze to relieve you from the heat. Unlike Qatar, the humidity in Greece in general isn’t at all that bad. You can seek shelter under a shade of a tree and you’d already feel cooled down.
Exploring Palaios Panteleimonas is like walking back in time with cobblestone streets and stone houses around you which has stood the test of time for four centuries now and counting. There is a small square where the church of Panteleimonas is located surrounded by numerous tavernas and small shops. It was said that the original inhabitants of this village abandoned it during the 1950’s and was only revived in the 1980’s possibly because of a film by Theodoros Angelopoulos called O Megalexandros which was shot there. How can anyone abandon this?
Thanks to that movie (which I think I must see) people are now able to appreciate the beauty of this place. After a million more photos were taken, I joined The Greek Mister and his friends who were all waiting for me in a taverna across the square for lunch.
“So did you like it?” The Greek Mister asked as I sat down.
“I loved it! I can’t believe you’ve never taken me here before!”
He grunted in response. Of course.
Disclaimer: No husband was harmed during this trip.