One of Pelion’s leading tourism attractions, the legendary “Moutzouris” (smudgy) steam-powered train will be up and running this weekend (June 8-9) after routes were cancelled in the previous month.
Services of the 116-year-old ‘little’ train, which runs on a 60cm narrow gauge line from the Volos town of Ano Lehonia through Mt Pelion to the village of Milies covers a distance of approximately 29km.
The cancellation of weekend routes last month prompted strong reactions by Volos and Magnesia authorities and local entrepreneurs, who said the decision to stop services without previous warning was disrupting incoming tourism and leading to considerable economic damage for the region.
The Thessaly Railways Association is accusing TrainOSE, which operates all passenger and freight trains, for failing to have drivers in place for the service, adding that the company “although aware of the problem, did not bother to solve it and and cannot reassure the same will not occur again”.
TrainOSE confirmed that services were cancelled due to “lack of drivers” adding in a statement that the company made every effort possible to address the problem, while expressing regret for the inconvenience.
Passengers who had already purchased tickets will be compensated by the TrainOSE ticket offices in Volos.
The Moutzouris choo-choo train was designed and constructed by Italian engineer Evaristo de Chirico, father of surrealist painter Giorgio de Chirico. The train played a significant role in the economic and cultural development of the wider Volos region.
The trains operates on weekends, departing from Ano Lehonia at 10am to Milies (departs at 3pm) with a stop at Ano Gatzea. Return tickets cost 18 euros, one-way tickets 10 euros for adults; 10 euros and 6 euros, respectively for children up to 12. For more info go here.