The city of Trikala in Central Greece has become known as a winter destination because of an innovative idea to turn an old mill into the largest Christmas theme park in Greece. Four years after its inception the project has evolved from a small Christmas fair to a large theme park that last year welcomed more than 850.000 visitors.
“It wasn’t easy in the beginning to convince the city’s council to spend a million euros to make a seasonal theme park that operates only for 38 days per year and then it is deconstructed, while visitors pay nothing to enter” said Odysseas Raptis, the CEO of eTrikala S.A. who runs the project. “Our goal wasn’t to make money from the project itself, but to find a way to stimulate the local economy.”
Within four years, they are almost breaking even, while the “The Mills of Evils” brings in about 15 million euros to local businesses and the surrounding villages.
“Greece didn’t have a big Christmas theme park and we thought that this would be an excellent idea for people to come to our city,” added Raptis who gave us a tour to the park and had us meet the Elves, the Fairy and Santa Claus himself. Watch the video:
The “Mill of Elves” this year operates between November 28, 2014 and January 4, 2015. There are many activities to keep visitors busy within the city of Trikala, but there are also many significant places nearby that can be part of a visitor’s itinerary including Meteora and the Pertouli Ski Center.
Where to Stay: Ananti Resort *****
Built on a hill on the outskirts of the city of Trikala with a breathtaking view of the Thessalian Field, the brand new Ananti City Resort is marking the upgrading of the idea of hospitality in the broader area. Located in a privileged spot on the Loggakio Hill, Ananti City Resort combines modern city-hotel comforts with nature’s blessings and a relaxing atmosphere. The plain, clear lines in complete harmony with the local environment, the modern interior design, the outdoor swimming pool nestled on the mountainside, the Spa premises with the indoor swimming pool, the roof garden with its superb Italian Restaurant and relaxing Coffee Bar, as well as the fully equipped Conference Hall, are some of the main components creating a uniquely charming hotel for vacation or business traveling purposes.