Up until the middle of the 20th century Prespa was more densely populated than it is today and there were once many mills in Prespa, particularly in the eastern part of the basin which has a number of small rivers and streams. The Agios Germanos watermill, built in 1930, is one of the few mills in the area to have survived almost completely intact and the original building included a flour mill, a fulling mill and a fulling tub.
Restoration efforts on the old mill building first began in 1997, undertaken by the Society for the Protection of Prespa (SPP) with the help of local residents and volunteers from World Wide Fund for Nature – Greece (WWF Greece), and the support of the MAVA Foundation. In 2014 the restoration was completed with grants from the A. G. Leventis Foundation and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation. In 2016, the exemplary restoration of the watermill complex won the coveted Europa Nostra Award in the “Restoration” category.
Information boards prepared by the SPP and a knowledgeable guide provide details about the mill and the operation of its three pieces of restored machinery for visitors, whilst other SPP projects have provided an information board in braille, wheelchair access ramps and a free informative and fun environmental education pack about the watermill and the Agios Germanos River for younger visitors.
The A. G. Leventis Foundation and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, together with the Hans Wilsdorf Foundation, are also funding the restoration of adjacent mill buildings, which are currently under construction. Completion of the works is expected in 2024.
The Society for the Protection of Prespa is responsible for the operation of the watermill, and visits can be arranged upon request after calling. Tel: 2385051211. Monday to Friday, 9:00-17:00.
The watermill is currently closed for renovation works