Koukounaries is the most famous beach of Skiathos and reputed to be the best in the Aegean if not the whole Mediterranean. It has fine golden sand leading up to the shade of the Koukounaries pine trees (umbrella pines). On the beach are 3 beach tavernas, 3 water sports schools and 2 kiosks for cigarettes, soft drinks, etc.Behind the beach is a large flat valley with green fields, more Koukounaries trees and fig trees. A large area between the road and the beach is a protected area for birds and wildlife. This was originally planned as a 9 hole golf course but the Greek Tourist Organisation was unable to obtain enough land for the 9th hole!! It is now a nice park where you can walk your dog or just stroll around the lake which is connected to the sea by a narrow channel.The first bus stop, No. 22, is at the near end of Koukounaries Beach and also close to Maratha Beach which is on the left hand side of Koukounaries Bay. Maratha Beach is small but very nice and has a nice beach taverna. Further along at bus stop 23, there is a dirt path to the right leading through a forest of Koukounaries and Pine trees to the beaches of Elias and Agistri, this is about a 40 minute stroll. At the next bus stop, No. 24, there is a dirt road to the right which goes to the beach of Mandraki (also known as Xerxes Beach). The next stop (25) is at the junction for Aghia Eleni Beach and the last stop (26) is the terminus at the far end of Koukounaries Beach. From here you can take an asphalt road to the right which goes past the old Xenia Hotel and brings you to a beach which is usually pretty empty at the right hand side of the bay.There is also the beginning of the road and path to the 2 Banana beaches.All along the road are hotels, most of them with swimming pools, supermarkets and many tavernas.Aselinos Beach
In the middle of the Northern side of the island, the big and the small Aselinos are located. The bigger one is very popular as a stop over during the daily excursions around the island. Between 13.00 and 15.00 the bay is very busy with the boats mooring and the people having dinner at the big restaurant. Before and after the beach is nice and quiet. The sea is often wavy at Aselinos beach, unless the wind comes from the South.A bit further to the right is the small Aselinos beach. This is a very nice little beach, with a small and charming taverna. It is a bit of a climb to get down there, but it is absolutely worth it, as this beach is nicely rough and unspoiled. In the area you will find the dog shelter and the Kounistria Monastery that are both worth a visit.Tsougria
Opposite of Skiathos lies a group of little uninhabited islands that can be visited for day trips, as they offer lovely beaches and a supremely relaxed atmosphere. The most visited island is Tsougria, the biggest one of all. It has a couple of beaches, but the most popular one lies in a sheltered bay and offers amazingly clear turquoise water, that remains shallow for al long time, making it a very safe place for little children. there is a nice kantina where you can find food, drinks and shade. It is very popular amongst people that have their own boat to go there, as it is easy to moor in the bay.On the back side of the island there is another beach with a recently established kantina, very atmospheric, and only accessible by private boat, or when you walk from the other beach through the woods. Its beach is not as nice, but it is always quiet and relaxing.When you go there with a (rental) boat beware of the rocks, there are some very tricky rocks just out of the coast line, that you can see with clear water, but not when there are waves. This applies mainly to the first beach you will encounter when you reach Tsougria coming from Skiathos.Traditional Greek boats (kaiki) make day trips to Tsougria from the harbour of Skiathos. The leave in the months of July more or less every hour. During the early and late season the schedules are less frequent.On the right side of Tsougria lies Tsougriaki, a very small and rocky island where many birds nest. It doesn’t have any remarkable beaches, but it feels like discovering a new place when you end up there alone with your company, having the small beach all to yourselves. It is just fun to visit for a few hours of sun, swimming and relaxing.Arkos is a small island left of Tsougria. There you have great views to Skiathos Town and the whole island. The atmosphere is relaxing and laid back, and it is even fun in the night time, as the kantina remains open until late during the summer season. Only private boats go to Arkos, and it is great to rent a boat for a day and visit all these lovely places by yourself.Lalaria
On the northern side of the island you will find the most magical beach, Lalaria. It’s colours and it’s atmosphere are completely different from any other beach on the island. The beach is covered with grey marble pebbles, and it is surrounded with rough grey rocks, making the beach completely inaccessible by land.Characteristic is the gate bordering the beach on the left side. It is the eye catcher of the bay. Once you pass that rock you will find waters so clear that it is hard to believe it really exists. The sea has all these amazing varieties of turquoise, and you can see the bottom of the sea even where it is really deep. Because of the rocks it can get very hot, and the two hour visit is the just enough.The only way you can get there is by boat. And you can only access it when the sea is calm, but it is a unique spot you really should try to visit. From the harbour daily excursions to Lalaria and Kastro depart around 10 in the morning. If you have your own boat, it is magic to go there later in the afternoon, you may get lucky and have the beach completely to yourself….Over the years the most beautiful stones have been taken away by visitors, and on behalf of all future tourists we ask you to not take any stones with you.Troulos Beach
Troulos Beach is a nice sandy beach, gently sloping into the sea and is ideal for families. There is a watersports school (where you can also rent motorboats), a taverna, a snackbar and a restaurant in a hotel right by the beach. There are several smaller beaches around the headlands on either side of Troulos Beach but most are difficult to access by foot and are usually used by people arriving in boats.The Troulos area starts at bus stop 18, at the crossroads for Aselinos and the Monastery of Kounistria, and extends to bus stop 21 at Maratha. After the town, it is the second busiest area and has many supermarkets, tavernas and swimming pools with pool bars. There is a lot of accommodation at Troulos but the majority are tucked away in quiet areas. All the swimming pools are open to the public providing you purchase something from the pool bar.There is a lot of accommodation that is tied to package holidays but also much available for those who like to arrange their own holiday and have a better, personal service. For walkers, there is a nice (reasonably flat) amble to Aselinos Beach (about 55 minutes) or a longer walk (1.5 hours) to Micro Aselinos Beach passing the Monastery of Kounistria (60 minutes).It is also possible to walk to the beaches in the Mandraki area and these walks can last from 40 minutes (starting from bus stop 21 at the Caravos Hotel) to 2 hours if you take the long route over the hills behind Troulos. Follow the signs for “Super Paradise Beach”.Megali Ammos BeachMegali Ammos beach can easily be accessed by foot from Skiathos Town. It has therefore always been popular by the local people and the children. There are several tavernas and a water sports school on Megali Ammos. In the high season the beach can get very busy.Achladies BeachAchladies (pronounced Aghlathies) is a small flat valley surrounded by the hills of Katsarou and rather dominated by the Hotel Esperides. This hotel is not a wonderfully beautiful building but much work has gone into making its surroundings very pleasant and it has many trees, flowers, artistically built rock walls and paved roads which give it a very nice character. Much of the flat land is planted with olives and different fruit trees and it has a very pastoral feel.There is one bus stop in the valley: No. 10The beach is very nice, set in a large, sheltered bay with water sports and a regular sea taxi service to Skiathos Town. It has several tavernas and behind the beach, on the road, are more tavernas and supermarkets.Two steep, semi-dirt roads lead up to the Katsarou area from where you can then drive or walk to Platanias, Kolios, Livetakia & Kechria. or back towards town.Aghia Paraskevi Beach
Platanias Valley is a large pastoral valley with a stream bed that runs most of the year. You can walk through from here (either from bus stop 15 or 16) to the back of the valley and onwards to Kechria and Alagaries. Accommodation spreads back up the valley but most is within 5 to 10 minutes walk from the beach.There are many tavernas, snack bars, grills and mini markets in this area, plus several swimming pools open to the public, always providing you buy that beer or cold drink. The beach of Platanias (sometimes known as Aghia Paraskevi) can be reached by foot from both bus stop 15 and bus stop 16. It is a long beach and lies in the same large bay as Vromolimnos and Kolios Beaches. There are several beach tavernas, a water sports school and a swimming pool at the Skiathos Princess Hotel just behind the beach at the Aghia Paraskevi end.For walkers, there is a concrete and then dirt road at bus stop 16 that leads to the path to Kechria Beach and monastery. This will take about 1.5 to 2 hours.You can also take the same road but bear right after 2 kilometres (after the road dips down into and crosses a stream bed) and continue up on the red dirt road that will eventually lead you to the Konstantinos Hotel. From there is the old path down to town. Roughly the same time as the Kechria walk.Vromolimnos Beach
On the western side of the Kalamaki Peninsular is the beach of Vromolimnos which deserves a page of its own. To get there go to bus stop 13 and follow the main road towards Koukounaries for 60 metres where you will see a road to the left leading to Vromolimnos and Kolios Beaches. Take the left fork after 30 metres and follow the road to the beach. The right fork goes to Kolios Beach.Vromolimnos has proved to be the second most popular beach to Koukounaries, primarily with the younger folks. This is mostly due to a snack bar come taverna in the middle of the beach which BLASTS out loud music out all day. This is not everybody’s idea of a relaxed beach but at either end you can get away from this and enjoy the wonderful view and particularly the sunsets.At the right hand hand of the beach is a good taverna and an excellent beach bar, probably the best on the island (click here for more information). At the left hand end is a water sports school and Vromolimnos is renowned for its good water skiing conditions especially in the evening when the sea becomes glass-like. Behind the beach is a brack water lake surrounded by reeds which starts to dry up in the summer. Throughout spring and autumn several species of water birds migrate through and stop for a time here.
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