The summit of Mt. Parnitha, Attica's highest mountain, has a splendid view of the plain of Athens cradled by Mt. Pendeli and Mt. Hymettos. Tragically, large swaths of the mountain's protected national park, particularly its western side, were destroyed in a 2007 fire. However, lovely nature walks threading through the Mt. Parnitha massif are still possible. Visitors are discouraged from passing through the charred area until the forest regenerates. In April and May the forest blooms with wildflowers, red poppies, white crocuses, purple irises, and numerous species of orchid. Many Athenians come year-round, especially on Sunday, to enjoy the clean air, mountain bike, or picnic, but some are equally attracted by the gaming tables at the nearby casino.
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