Watch: Climbing Mount Olympus

A video by film maker Ioannis Koulousis shows his climb to the top of Greece’s highest mountain.

The heart of a religion and hundreds of stories from ancient Greece, climbing Mount Olympus naturally stimulates philosophical thinking. The muscles and lungs are at work, and, if you have a creative mind, so is your inner storyteller.

In a six-minute film by travel filmmaker Ioannis Koulousis, an encoded text message sends him on a journey to reach the summit of Greece’s tallest mountain.

The story, one of camaraderie and coming together, came to him during Greece’s first lockdown last spring, when everyone was experiencing being shut off from one another for the first time. “I wanted to remind the world that even the gods stood together at the top of Olympus,” he explains.

Tell us about the narrative, and the message “Meet me one breath away from the sun.”

We wanted to underline the divine essence of Olympus, so we thought up this modern higher power which sends text messages in order to bring us closer. A meeting is requested “a breath away from the sun;” at the peak, where we can all stand together!

How much time did you spend planning, filming and editing?

Climbing the mountain just to climb it and doing it while filming are two totally different things. While we had a scenario in mind, there was no shot list; we approached it like a travel video. It was a once in a lifetime experience! I reached my own physical limits, which I actually realized on the way down. We spent four whole days on the mountain, and many months editing.

Was it your first time climbing Mount Olympus? How did it feel?

Yes, it was my first time, and while I’ve traveled a lot and am not very easily moved, my eyes filled with tears when I reached the summit. There is something unique about Olympus. Something, that has now made me commit to climbing it again in winter.

You’ve shot some incredible places around the world, but this last year you’ve been at home. What are the most impressive places you’ve captured in Greece?

Olympus is definitely one of them – one of the most powerful moments I had the privilege to experience during this difficult year. We’ve also captured some spectacular content at Meteora, and at the Vikos gorge.

Tell us a little bit about yourself, your advertising agency Apeiro, and your team.

I founded Apeiro about a year ago, after traveling the world for two years. It started with one camera and grew into a company with my incredible collaborators who choose to work with me. We all have the nomadic lifestyle in common; we just can’t imagine a life without adventures.

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