At the northeastern corner of Greece and nearly 20-km from Alexandroupolis
at the crossroad between East and West, North and South, the river Evros is forming
an ecosystem of international importance, according to the Ramsar contract, known
as the Evros delta. Evros is one of the biggest rivers in the Balkans with its
430-km length, from which the 203-km are forming the natural borderline between
Greece and Turkey.
According to Ploutarchos, the initial name of the river was Romvos.
Today the river is called Evros. Evros was the son of the Thracian king named
Kassandros this is from where the river has its name. Evros was slandered from
his stepmother, Damasipi, because he refused her love.
After that Evros was chased from his father because he believed Damasipi,
Evros was so disappointed and jumped into the river, since then the river is carrying
his name. The story of the despaired purity, which is hunted and is trying to
survive in our nature, after this entire story is familiar thanks to the myth
The archimandrite N. Vafiadis is telling us another name of the river,
he is naming it Maritsa, according to his theory the name might comes from the
ancient Thracian name Marissos or Maris, the Thracians used to call the rivers
with this name because of the shimmering of the surfaces, or from the Slavic name
Moritsi or Moravitsi or from the Indo- European word mar, which means lake or
The sources of the river are located on Skomio, a mountain that
is close to Sofia. The river is flowing to the southeast and is entering Greece,
a small part of it, from Ormenio
until a village called Dilofo,
is forming the natural borderline between Greece and Bulgaria. From this region
on and until the village Marasia, where the river is entering Turkey and from
the village Nea Vissa until
the rivers’ outfall it is forming the natural borderline between Greece and Turkey.
The tributaries of Evros are Ardas, Erithropotamos and Erginis. The
river Evros is flowing into the Aegean Sea and at its coast it is forming an extended
Delta. The area of the delta is covering 188.000 sq.meters, from which 150.000
sq.meters belong to Greece. From those, 100.000 sq.meters are forming the area
that is included in the Ramsar contract. The area is considered as one of the
most important hydrotopes worldwide.
The valley of the river is formed from several ecosystems that expand
from Nea Vissa until the sea, here you can find a large variety of biotopes with
a rich flora and fauna, which was created from the aquatic systems of the river
and its tributaries and from the eastern endings of the Rodopi mountain range.
At the southern part of this valley, there where the river is branching, the delta
The delta of the river was formed 10.000 years ago, the melting of
the glaciers had as result the rising of the sea-level. After that the sea literally
drowned the north Aegean coast
and inundating the low land of the delta. This alteration reduced the grade and
the flowing speed of the river the result of this phenomenon was the change of
the rivers "behavior".
Many times the river was flowing over its main riverbed and created
new ones, it left materials behind during its flowing and also when the waters
reached its outfall. Simultaneously the wave and current activities of the sea
were increasing in the coastal area of the delta, as a result of these activities
were the dispersion of the material in this area.In the summertime when the river
waters are reducing, the seawaters, because of the small hypsometric difference
from the sea level and the calmly flowing of the river waters, are insinuating
the riverbed and the artificial canals.
The result of these natural activities is the forming of various coasts,
small islands, lagoons, swamps, dunes and many other small biotopes in the coastal
area of the delta, all these facts are characterizing a developing ecosystem.
In the winter sometimes the river is flowing over its bed forming
smaller or bigger aquatic areas by inundating the southeastern part of the delta.
At the Turkish side is the Gala lake our ancient forefathers used to call the
lake Stendoritida, while at the Greek side you can see the lake of the water nymph
and several other smaller lakes, such as the Tsekouri, Skepi, Spitia and Gyneka
This text is cited May 2003 from the Development Company of Alexandroupolis URL below.