Lake Trichonida is the largest natural lake in Greece. It is located in the eastern part of the Aitoloakarnania prefecture, in the east of Agrinio, south of Evrytania and northwest of Nafpaktos. It covers an area of 98.6 square kilometres (38.1 sq mi) with a maximum length of 19 kilometres (12 mi) and maximum depth of 58 metres (190 ft). One million years ago the lake was large enough to cover the central part of Aitoloakarnania, a part that is now a plain. The lake later dried up and today is located in the east-central portion of the prefecture. The municipalities with shores on the lake are Thermo, Makryneia, Arakynthos, Thestieis, and Paravola.
Coordinates: 38°33′01″N 21°33′15″E
On April 11, 2007, an earthquake, the epicenter of which was in the lake, struck in the early hours, between 2 and 6 A.M. waking up many residents, who had to evacuate their homes. There were more earthquakes between 10:13 and 10:15 AM and several minutes later. They were measured as 5.3, 5.4, 5.6 and 5.7 on the Richter scale and caused important damage in the area.
Activities at lake Trichonida
Birdwatching: Around the lake, there are beautiful forests with maples, pines and other trees. The lake and its environs is home to more than 140 birds. There is also farmland and various villages surrounding the area.
The flora of lake comprehends plane-trees, willows. proplar-trees, water-lilies, orchids, rushes and banks are overgrown with reeds.The lake is rich in phytoplankton about 90 types of them and seeweeds as well. A great number of fishes different types as tsouroukla, dromitsa, smelt, eel, lourogovios, trichonovelonitsa, nonovios, saliara and others. The caught fishes exceed 350 tones annually. The poultry-fauna is just as significant. Over of 140 types birds 30 of them are protected as waterduck, heron, woodcock, waterhen, kingfisher and others. Also live reptiles and many insects. The lake Trichonida pertaining to regions of Natura 2000 as the more clear lake of Greece.
Fishing: Trichonida, with an area of 97 square kilometers, was once referred to as the “Sea of Aetolia” in old property contracts. In the morning mist, the summits of Arakynthos and Panaitoliko figure in the hazy background. In the old days, about 300 fishermen’s families lived off the lake. Now they are down to just four or five. It’s not the fish stocks that have dwindled but the buyers. The lake is home to 25 species of fish, 16 of which are edible and 11 are indigenous to Greece. The tastiest is the tiny sand smelt — normally a saltwater fish — which has adapted to the lake and even graces the tables of Athenian tavernas.