MAGNESIA - 4 SEASONS ONE DESTINATION
The prefecture of Magnesia is a special place with a very privileged position as it combines mountain and sea. Historic monasteries and churches, traditional villages with unique architecture, developed tourist settlements, and the modern city of Volos. The main areas of the prefecture are: Volos, Pelion, Zagora, Kastri, Tsagarada. The natural beauties of the area in combination with the picturesque villages of Pelion, the Pagasitikos Gulf and the Aegean Sea, make the prefecture unique in beauty and an ideal holiday destination. Magnesia offers amazing beaches while the prefecture also includes the islands of the northern Sporades, Skiathos, Skopelos and Alonissos.
Volos is the capital of the prefecture and the third largest port in Greece. Due to the port and its geographical location it is an important industrial, commercial and economic center. The city of Volos is built on the site of Ancient Iolkos, from where Jason and his companions started the Argonaut campaign. It has a unique road plan, beautiful neoclassical buildings, squares and the beach with the famous tsipouro restaurants that charm the visitor. Its port connects the three islands of the northern Sporades, Skiathos, Skopelos and Alonissos with Mainland Greece. The Argonauts seafront promenade is the city's most popular meeting place. Some of the most interesting sights of Volos are the market, the old town and the castle of the 6th AD. century.
The castle of Volos was built in the middle of the 6th AD. century, in the present Old district in the western part of the city. In the building of the Railway Station there is a museum with rare material from the history of the railways where the statue of Athena stands out. The former Papastratos tobacco warehouses on the beach of Volos, house departments of the University of Thessaly and conference rooms. Also very important is the coastal park of Anavros with modern sculptures by Greek and foreign artists. The most important museum of Magnesia in the city of Volos is the Athanasaki Archaeological Museum. The Athanasakeio Museum has a large collection of exhibits that cover long periods of time.
Pelion is a mountain next to the city of Volos which according to mythology was the summer residence of the gods and home of the Centaurs. There are natural trails ideal for hiking in beautiful landscapes through interesting routes. Monuments of historical importance, architectural works of art, arched bridges, traditional mansions and Byzantine churches offer beautiful icons. Religious tourism flourishes in Pelion, as there are many churches and monasteries of great importance, with impressive relics and icons. Throughout Pelion, there are over 70 picturesque villages built with the traditional Pelion Architecture. They are real museums of folk architecture that impress visitors. The train of Pelion, the legendary Moutzouris, which started its journeys in 1895, was designed by the Italian engineer Evaristo de Chirico and is a technological achievement of his time.
Agios Lavrentios is a small village of Pelion, above Agria, which offers a beautiful view of the Pagasitic Gulf. At the back of Pelion is built the noble village of Zagora, at a height of 400 meters with 4 districts, Agios Georgios, Agia Kyriaki, Agia Paraskevi and Sotira. For lovers of action, there are activities in nature such as walking, mountain biking, horseback riding, diving, fishing etc. The ski center of Pelion is located in the location "Agriolefkes'' at an altitude of 1471 meters, very low for a ski resort, which makes it special. In the ski center of Pelion there is a chalet where you can enjoy coffee, hot drinks and snacks. Magnesia also has stunning beaches.
Tsagarada is the most cosmopolitan village and is a holiday destination at any time of the year with old churches, but also the plane trees in the courtyards of Agia Paraskevi and the church of Agios Taxiarchis. Near Tsagarada is Damouchari beach paved with thick pebbles and crystal clear waters. The beach is organized and is divided into two bays, between which are the ruins of a Venetian castle. Portaria is also a popular destination with the characteristic that it is surrounded by green nature and beautiful mansions, which have been restored and function as hostels. Makrinitsa, one of the most traditional and picturesque villages also known as "the balcony of Pelion''. It is worth visiting the Museum of Folk Art and History in the Topali mansion, which was declared a protected monument by the Ministry of Culture in 1985.
Vyzitsa is a traditional village in central Pelion, which was declared protected in 1980 after a presidential decree. The history of Vyzitsa dates back to the 16th century, when wealthy Greeks from Egypt arrived in the area to build their new home. Agios Ioannis is also a popular choice for visitors to the mountain of Centaurs. Its blue flag awarded beach makes it one of the most sought after beaches of Pelion, as it is one of the most famous beaches in the area and has a variety of tourist infrastructure. Very close to the cosmopolitan resort of Agios Ioannis, Plaka beach is one of the most popular beaches in the whole of Pelion. Clear blue waters, a beach paved with pebbles and lush vegetation that almost touches the sea offering a wonderful view.
Skiathos is an island that combines lush vegetation with idyllic beaches and picturesque landscapes that enchant. Its natural beauty combined with the cosmopolitan air and the hospitable mood of the inhabitants make Skiathos a unique destination. The city stretches along the beach while the beautiful small peninsula Bourtzi, at the entrance of the port, welcomes visitors. This peninsula divides the port in two and was formerly a fortress founded by the Gizi brothers in 1207. The house-museum of Papadiamantis who was born and lived on the island is one of the most important attractions of the island. The chapel of Alexandros Papadiamantis is kept in the Church of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary, as well as the historical miraculous icon of Panagia Odigitria. The castle-protector from the 14th century protected the islanders from pirates and is the most remarkable location of the island.
It has 64 beaches that are awarded the blue flag while water sports, diving, sailing, fishing, hiking, tennis and horse riding are some of the activities it provides. In the southern part of the island behind Koukounaries beach is Strofilia, a unique wetland protected by the Municipality of Skiathos. It is an ideal destination for nature lovers with tall pines, ducks, swans, wild geese, rare flamingos and black swans. The island of Tsougria, southeast of Skiathos, with its small lakes and the church of Agios Floros is also picturesque. Legend has it that in the 60's the Beatles visited the island and wanted to buy it.
Some of the most famous beaches are listed below and are a reference point for the island. At the northeastern end of the island is Lalaria beach, one of the most beautiful in Greece that made Skiathos famous. The stone with the famous hole in the middle and the impressive rocks are some of the unexplained nature that characterize the area. Known for its history, Banana beach, which was characterized by its shape, is a favorite destination on the island. Next to it is the Little Banana which is now frequented by nudists. The beach of Troulos is ideal for families since the sea does not become abruptly deep. It got its name from the island that is located there and looks like a dome.
In Mandraki you will find Agistro, the port of Xerxes and the bay of Elias with the sandy beach located 14 km west of the town of Skiathos. Koukounaries is the most popular beach on the island as it is one of the most popular beaches in Europe and is also known as "Golden Sand". It is one of the beaches with fine sand, clear blue waters and a unique forest that reaches a few meters before the sea. Due to its location, it also offers a magnificent sunset that no one should miss. Kanapitsa is another of the famous beaches of the island near Cape Kalamaki. It is famous for water sports but also for the shrimp spaghetti of the homonymous beach which is a constant value for half a century now.
The cosmopolitan character and the perfect tourist infrastructure of Skiathos attract numerous visitors from all over the world. The modern settlement, with its hotels, restaurants, coffee bars and tourist shops, retains the traditional color of the island with its white tiled roofs in houses and mansions, old churches, cobbled streets, picturesque alleys and cobbled streets. The island has identified its name with nightlife, and frantic rhythms. For this reason, visitors prefer to take a walk in the bars of the city, discovering every place of entertainment. If you want to try the cuisine of Skiathos, do not forget to try some of the local products, such as traditional honey, olives and fresh fish of the island.
Skopelos is one of the islands of the Northern Sporades between Skiathos and Alonissos and is considered the greenest island in the Aegean. The town of Skopelos has been characterized since 1978 as a traditional settlement due to its architecture. Venetian influences, Pelion-Macedonian, rural and neoclassical style are its characteristics while the interiors of the houses are decorated with ornate furniture and porcelain brought by sailors from their voyages. The mountains of Skopelos with its many springs and pines are another unique jewel of the island, as well as the picturesque bays, wonderful beaches and unique landscapes. Myths and legends give the beautiful image of the island its mysterious dimension.
The beauty of the island led Hollywood producers to shoot the movie "Mamma Mia" there, making the island a world-renowned tourist destination. Skopelos belongs to the Northern Sporades and has three main ports: Skopelos, Agnontas and Glossa. Glossa is one of the three villages of the island also known as the "high village" as it is built on a hill, with wonderful sea views. It is of great archaeological interest, since in many parts there are ancient towers and buildings of inestimable historical importance. In Stafylos is the Mycenaean tomb while on the east side there is the Asklepieion. In the castle one can enjoy the unique sunset from Kastani beach or Limnonari in the port of Loutraki.
It is worth visiting Ai Giannis in Kastri, the picturesque church on the rock with its 112 steps. The house of the writer Pavlos Nirvana which functions as a folklore museum in the country. The monasteries in Palouki Evangelistria, Metamorfosi of Sotira, Agia Varvara, Agios Prodromos, Taxiarches, Agia Anna are some of the most important monasteries of Skopelos, built in the 16th and 17th centuries. A special experience is the visit to the workshops of the traditional artists of the island, who have been working for centuries on clay, wood, glass, metal. The wonderful forests of Skopelos are ideal for walks, but also the endless beaches, both on the south and the north wilder side of the island. Running waters and ravines give a special note to the landscape with herds of the famous Skopelos goat breed, with characteristic brown-red hair.
Kastani beach became famous from the movie "Mama Mia" which is located right next to Milia with which they are connected only by a path that passes over the rocks. The best beach of Skopelos is Milia, a coast with pebbles, sand and really crystal clear waters surrounded by green that reaches the beach. Agios Ioannis beach consists of sand and stones in many colors with amazing seabed. If you go up the 100 steps you will meet the church of Agios Ioannis from where the view is dreamy. In Skopelos travelers can go diving, kayaking, sailing and many other water sports.
Glysteri is a beautiful cove with calm waters and pebbles within walking distance of the town. Elios beach in Neo Klima has sand and fine pebbles is organized and is located 14 km from the chora(capital of the island). Hovolo beach with its high white rocks, pines and blue waters compose a magnificent landscape. The beach of Panormos settlement is located in the center of a small cove and offers unique beauty in a green environment. The magical beach of Limnonari stands out for its turquoise waters, natural beauty and is located in a small cove on the road to Agnontas. Glygoneri beach, also known as Agios Konstantinos beach, is organized, with clear waters, while it consists of sand and several pebbles.
The traditional Skopelos cheese pie in the traditional bakeries of the island is a unique taste. Rofos stew, beef or pork with plums, sweet plum, sweet almond, hamalia and macaroons are some of the traditional dishes that one should try. An ideal place on the island for food is the picturesque port of Agnontas, where the visitor will find amazing fish and impressive lobster spaghetti. Skopelos covers all tastes offering entertainment for all ages in the bars, with the tasteful music, up to the taverns with the rebetiki music, the beach bars and the clubs. The island is ideal for cycling, explorations, walks on impressive trails, bird watching, fishing to satisfy every visitor.
The most special island of the Sporades is Alonissos, an alternative but also romantic green island, with wonderful beaches and a few fishing villages. The old capital of the island offers a wonderful view to each side of Alonissos. Patitiri is called the port-capital of the island, because the inhabitants have a long tradition in viticulture. Few are the settlements of the island, others picturesque and quiet with traditional architecture that "ties" harmoniously with the natural environment. The Historical and Folklore Museum of Alonissos is worth a visit as it is characterized as an "ark of knowledge" of the place. The Pirate-Historical Museum, the Castle on the west side of Chora, the Monastery of Kyra Panagia and many other attractions will enchant travelers.
Fishing, hiking, visiting the islands of the largest water park in Europe, kayaking, canoeing, diving and above all relaxation are some of the activities of the island while it promises many beautiful short walks. The descent to Patitiri through the old cobbled path, the walk from the chapels of Ai Giannis and Ai Taxiarchis, the route to Kalovoulos, the southern cape of the island and, finally, the route to the port, Megalo Mourtias and the Old Alonissos are routes that leave no one unmoved. The National Marine Park includes the Mediterranean Seal Care Center as well as the Mom Information Center, and is the largest in Europe.
Near the port is Rousoum Gialos, which is a suburb of the capital where he lived after the earthquake of 1965 and due to the reconstruction has been united with Patitiri. The settlement of Votsi is above the most picturesque bay of the island and was named after Admiral Votsi who went to the island in 1913 and joined Patitiri. The beautiful beach of Vythisma is located just before Megalo Mourtias and can be visited by boat. It is considered the best beach together with the Golden Apple and gathers many lovers of windsurfing. The beautiful beach of Milia, is a beautiful place with colorful small round stones and crystal clear waters in the heart of a beautiful cove. Ideal place to enjoy the sun and the sea with the turquoise waters, ideal for lovers of the seabed.
Mikros Mourtias offers calm and serenity with calm crystal clear waters and a calmer atmosphere. The settlement of Marpounta has two stunning beaches surrounded by rocks and the landscape looks fabulous. Kokkinokastro is considered the best beach of Alonissos, along with the Golden Apple with blue sea, cliffs, yellow sand, colorful stones and pines. The visitor will enjoy the view of the red cliff that continues deep into the sea forming a small cape. Steni Vala, a fishing village with rooms to let and taverns with traditional food, is a picturesque harbor that looks like a small fjord. In Steni Bala is the Protection Center of the Mediterranean Seal.
The island has several restaurants, traditional, simple and luxurious where you can taste whatever food you want. Traditional flavors are the hamalia, macaroon in a leaf sprinkled with icing and aroma of lemon or orange, cinnamon and nutmeg. The macaroons they make with different recipes, the fouskakia (donuts) and the sultana (a kind of sweet bougatsa) are also unique flavors on the island. Patitiri and Palia Chora are places where the night rhythms of the island become more intense. The nightlife offers a wide range of options, from relaxing at the sea to the party that lasts until the early morning hours.