The thousands of islands of the Aegean appear to be scattered around like pebbles in the hands of a careless God; some seem to be forming circles or clusters whereas others stand on their own.

Less than a hundred miles north of the Greek capital of Athens is a cluster of islands called “Sporades” because of the sporadic way the they are laying on the map.

According to ancient Greek mythology, two Titans were caught in a fierce row and in their anger threw huge pieces of rock onto each other. These landed in the Aegean and formed the Sporades island cluster as we know it today.

The island of Skiathos is the one closest to the mainland, at a distance of 2.4 miles from the shores of nearby Pelion mountain.

There is only one little town on the island but its many stunning beaches and effortless charm more than make up for this. Τhe town of Skiathos is divided into the Old and the New Town. The Old Town, located right above the medieval port retains an old world charm with its narrow stone paths, little plazas and restored traditional houses.

Here you can steal a glance at the locals’ routines: revered Methuselahs pondering over half-finished games of backgammon, their ageing wives shooing away lazy cats from porches. The highlight of the old port is the Bourtzi, built on a tiny peninsula to safeguard the town from enemy attacks. The views from there to the town are breathtaking.

Skiathos - Definitely Greece
© Pixabay

You can include Skiathos or any other destination in a trip that is tailor-made to cater to your needs and preferences

Skiathos is one of the many hidden gems of the Aegean that remains greatly unspoiled by tourism.

As you descend to the New Town the scenery changes rapidly.

The pedestrian zone around Papadiamantis Street is brimming with dozens of cafeterias, tiny tavernas and folk shops. The house of Alexandros Papadiamantis, an influential Greek novelist born in Skiathos, has been turned into a Museum and is open for visitors.

For a taste of Skiathos’ famous nightlife, head for the bars, clubs and pubs around the nearby Treis Ierarhes Square, you won’t be disappointed.

After a night of partying a lazy day on the beach is a must.

Fortunately, there are over 60 beaches on the island to choose from, though most are accessible only by boat. Many offer round-the-island boat cruises departing from the old port, stopping by postcard-worthy Lalaria Beach. Accessible only by sea, the trademark of Lalaria are its white wave-kissed pebbles and the steep rocky formations that tower imposingly over the beach. Koukounaria Beach is considered to be the third best beach in the whole Mediterranean.

Over the Aselinos beach, at the northernmost tip of the island, lie the ruins of the Skiathos' original settlement.

It was fortified to withstand pirate attacks; with the elimination of that threat, the settlement was abandoned. Today only four churches and parts of the walls and gate remain standing, yet the eerie atmosphere and birds-eye views of the sea below are reasons enough to visit.

The glistening golden sand is the only boundary between luscious green woods and the crystal clear water in the color of the sky.

Other organized beaches include Megali Ammos and Ahladies, famous for their turquoise water, yet it is Banana Beach that attracts most visitors who come here not only to admire the natural beauty but also to take part in lively parties and engage in water sports activities. Little Banana Beach is more secluded and serene, framed also by shallow turquoise waters and green pines.

Skiathos is the ideal place to combine cosmopolitan holidays with a lively beach life and nightlife and it’s often nicknamed “the Small Mykonos”.

Similar destinations we recommend: Athens, Mykonos, Santorini, Crete, Karpathos, Rhodes

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