Sporades Islands of Greece: Leisurely Island Living
Sporades Island of Skiathos
Clad in pine forests, olive groves, and scattered medieval ruins, Skiathos offers a range of adventures, from beach hopping to inland explorations to deluxe pampering. There are dozens of beaches, some crowded with lounges, umbrellas and fresh seafood restaurants, others tranquil and virtually empty. Indulge in an afternoon seaside massage at the Princess Resort on Platinias beach. Skiathos Marina, near the Old Port, is steps from nightlife on “Club Strip”, now rivaling Mykinos for music and revelry.
Sporades Island of Skopelos
An island of ancient viticulture, Skopelos was founded by Prince Staphylos, the son of the god of wine, Dionysos, and Princess Ariadne of Crete. Since time immemorial, the island has always been acclaimed for the production of wine. Artifacts from his Mycenean tomb and amphora shards scattered across the ocean floor, testify to ancient vineyards. Hike the two miles up from Loutraki to Glossa in the northwest highlands, the most authentically Greek town in the Sporades. Poke around the shops. Stop in the Agnanti Restaurant for excellent local fare and a chat with owner Nikolas. Around the island, you will find your perfect beach, secluded, crowded, or nude, with waterside taverns, sun beds, umbrellas and sea sports, or just the sun and you. In the evening, toast the setting sun with a glass of local aphrodisiac wine.
Sporades Island of Alonnisos
Fragranced by pine forests, olive groves and citrus orchards, Alonnisos has long been the home of serious sailors. From here, Jason and the Argonauts sailed to Kolhida to retrieve the Golden Fleece, and the ships of the Achaeans sailed to Troy. For those who love nature, and nature photography, the National Marine Park is a land and sea refuge for rare seabirds, dolphins, the Mediterranean monk seal, and protects numerous shipwrecks of classic and Byzantine times.
Sporades Island of Skyros
The deeply cut, forbidding cliffs of Skyros that embrace the sea prove ideal, protected anchorages for privacy-seeking luxury yachts. Skyros town, high on a bluff, is a white-washed maze of Cycladic-style buildings. Plan to get lost in the web of ancient alleyways lined with shops, museums and restaurants. The beautiful beaches are said to have the bluest and clearest waters in Greece. Kalamitsa Bay is an international mecca for windsurfers and kite boarders, who can sail for miles across the tranquil surf.
Destination Overview: Greece: Islands of Enchantment