One of the most visited places in Western Macedonia is the traditional stone built village of Nymfaio, in the Municipality of Amyntaio. One main attraction in a specially fenced area of 50 acres and at an altitude of 1,350m. is the Brown Bear Shelter. Thousands of people every year visit the Shelter to get informed and see the brown bears up close.
The shelter belongs to Arcturos, a Greek non-governmental and non-profit ecological organization founded in 1992. Its main goal it the protection of wildlife and the natural environment, with field research, scientific study, public awareness, environmental education and volunteering, enhancing biodiversity and sustainability in Greece and abroad.
The shelter hosts 13 bears (09.2020) where the visitors can for sure see some of them from a relatively close distance during the tour.
Guests should wear appropriate footwear as the tour takes place through a forest path.
During the tour you will be informed about the changes in the behaviour and the way of living of the bear through years, the morphological and biological characteristics of the animal, its feeding habits, its reproduction, the birth and education of its babies, and the winter dormancy.
Κέντρο ενημέρωσης για την Καφέ Αρκούδα
In the historic building of “Nikeios Scholi” in Nymfaio you will find the Information Center for the Brown Bear, which is addressed to people of all ages. The visitors of the Center have the opportunity to choose the topics they wish to deepen and interact with the information provided to them, thus gaining an active role in the events. The tour presents a journey into the “life of the bear” through a scenario with natural flow and continuity. Visitors are invited to discover the mysterious relationship between the bear, the environment and man.
It is also worth visiting the Wolf Information Center and the Wolf Shelter in Agrapidia.
- The Bear Shelter is open Thursday-Tuesday from 10.00-17.00.
- The guides start every hour. The last one starts at 16:30.
- Entrance: €6 for adults and children above 12 years. €4 for children 3-12 years old. With the same ticket you can enter the Wolf Shelter in Agrapidia.
- Pets are not allowed
- The Bear Shelter is closed during the hibernation period of the bears (usually early January-early March).
- Telephone 23860-41500
- Website: https://www.arcturos.gr
ARCTUROS implements national and cross-border programs for the protection of mountain ecosystems with emphasis on large mammals, aiming an integrated management of Protected Areas and the provision of specific know-how for interventions in the natural environment.