I looked forward to spending a week on Skiathos as I had not been to Greece before.
After seeing the island featured in the "Mamma Mia" film I was really excited about visiting it.
The travel brochures painted a beautiful picture of the area praising the "best beaches in Greece".
Koukanaries beach is supposed to be one of the world's best.
The day I visited, it looked drab and miserable and was lined with sunbeds and parasols. The beach was accessed over a muddy/sandy path and I had to dodge a huge puddle as it had rained very heavily the day before. Rough concrete was the next surface. Best beach? No way.
I left and went round the adjacent nature reserve. Much better. Saw several species of birds and butterflies plus mossies.
The beach at Troulos, where I was based, was attractive but also lined with sunbeds spoiling the view. Ok, people like to lie in the sun. Access to this beach was dangerous as the steps had broken away and the concrete rubble was left to clamber over or walk crab- like over a little bit of raised sand.
However all was not doom and gloom. A walk over the west end of the island, through woodland and up a steep hill brought me out onto the north coast. This is well worth the effort. The beach, Elia, was lovely though the "Beach Taverna" was tatty and expensive. (A small can of Greek lemonade was 2 euros each) Access difficult down steep paths down the cliffside. I am slightly disabled but forced myself to get to this part of the island and I was so pleased I did. Good bus service along the southern part of the island.
It is worth leaving the coastal parts of Skiathos as the rest of the island is very green and suitable for walkers.
I found the prices of drinks and food in shops quite expensive compaired to other places I have visited. This would put me off visiting any of the other Greek islands but I have learned that prices on Skiathos are higher than the others so perhaps I will pay a visit to another in the future.
The Astoria Hotel at Troulos is the place to stay. Very clean, pleasant staff and lovely buildings and grounds.
The scenery is well worth a visit and Skiathos town is a very interesting place to explore.
Try to learn a couple of Greek words like "good morning" and "thank you". The locals really seemed pleased when I attempted to communicate in their own language.
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- Also Known As:
- Astoria Hotel Skiathos/Troulos