The village of Kourounia has many points of interest for tourists and travellers looking to enjoy nature. The so-called “Chionousiko” is just such a point of interest. It’s an old water fountain, running from a stone-built frame that distinguishes it from the surrounding environment, and once played a vital role in the local water supply.
Fountains were a source of life in ages past, back when running water would have been considered science fiction. Households would have to exert effort to have fresh water every day. Luckily though, Greece has no shortage of natural springs.
Many of them even had unique names, such as this one. True to form, Greek mythology is littered with accounts of the healing and revitalising power of water. In fact, the ancients even worshipped water as a deity, viewing it as a source of life and energy, strength, healing and well-being. Many of the springs and fountains that still exist today were once associated with individual deities. Since antiquity, springs were considered the homes of mythical creatures and spirits such as dragons, lamiai, nymphs and nereids.
In times past, the construction of a fountain for spring water was a job only stonemasons were entrusted with, often funded by entire villages or wealthy individuals.
Many of these stonemasons remain anonymous, as do the people who paid for the fountain. Nevertheless, in certain places oral traditions passed down by the locals record the names of those who contributed to the construction of these vital public utilities. Inscriptions, while extant, are somewhat of a rarity. Thankfully though, hikers who encounter this fountain can find an inscription carved into the stone frame, which provides information on its funding and dating (translated from Greek): “Paid for and completed by V.K. Sarantinos. Built in the year 1957”.

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