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“Restore body and soul in Skyros!”
Review of The Skyros Centre - CLOSED

Reviewed September 2, 2012

Just back from a 10-day course at the Skyros Centre, much restored at many levels. Caring helpful staff; yummy food which allowed me to stick to a complicated health regime; a beautiful setting, with a vine-shaded terrace; yoga to start the day, outdoors; traditional Skyrian houses to stay in; the overwhelming experience of Skyros town, which was a challenge but wonderful to connect with. As to the courses, they were well-run and enriching. I did "Life choices, life changes" as well as the yoga, and dipped into Alison's laughter thing, playing silly games and having a good laugh and awakening my creativity. Then there was the beach, a good trek down the hill and along the road, but blissfull when we got there. It was a pleasure to go out with the gang, or "tribe", to the beach, the tavernas, the town so rich in character, history, myth.... I heartily recommend it.
Just don't go if you have trouble moving around on steep hills - if you have dodgy knees or hips, let alone a serious mobility impairment, this is not for you. I struggled the first day or two. After getting lost and having to seek help a couple of times I found a connection to the place through my feet and loved it after that. Getting lost seems to be part of the Skyros experience!

Thank PenelopeCirce
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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22 - 26 of 93 reviews

Reviewed September 2, 2012

I had been thinking about Skyros for four years before finally booking, and am so glad I did. A life-changing experience. Monique Roffey's generous, intelligent and practical Life-Writing course broke down barriers and opened up new vistas of writing for me and for other participants, all of whom I can now call friends. We even published our own anthology before we left!

The best writing tutor, and in fact probably the best tutor/trainer I've ever experienced.

I was lucky to have Dina's superb facilitation of the main group (she also ran the co-temporous life changes, life choices course), and Alison's comedy and improvisation workshops, and between them and the other participants and the sunshine, (who told me en-masse that the yoga, too, was fab, but 7.30am was a little early for me) some sort of magic happened.

Others have spoken of the superb team at the centre, and I found their attention to the small comforts so helpful, whether it was a plaster or a "proper" teabag that was wanted. They were all so welcoming, and nothing was too much trouble.

Loads of free time, loads of options, loads of opportunities. Once you have booked, which you should, here's my advice:

Spend at least one afternoon at the Kavos Bar in Lanaria, share a taxi from the town square in Skyros. Take swimming gear and snorkels, and enjoy gorgeous location, private swimming deck and floating sunbeds, stay for sunset and cocktails. (decent loos and changing facilities there too).

The only shoes that can cope in Skyros town are ones with grips. Streets are slippery cobbles, and almost all at a 45 degree angle.

Take those underwater shoes to protect against pebbles (and urchins at Atsitsa), and use them to walk across the burning sand too. (i went in August)

Note that when they say shared accommodation, they don't mean you share a room. Everyone gets their own room, so no need for a single supplement unless you really want it. Not much time spent in accommodation (which is scattered around the town and beach, sometimes in apartments inside Skyrian homes).

I will definitely be going back!

5  Thank Liz C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 1, 2012

I have just returned from a 10-day break at the Skyros Centre where I was on the 'Life Writing' programme. This holiday had all the elements of what I was after this summer. I learnt how to write (well, a bit!), made fantastic friends, laughed a lot, cried a lot, ate wonderful food and sun-bathed on a glorious beach. Be prepared to share your emotions and open up to people you have never met before but that is the beauty of this holiday. The facilitators were great, the staff at the centre are ever-so accommodating and the setting is stunning. Thanks to everyone and I look forward to returning in the future.

2  Thank Alex77in2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 28, 2012

Unfortunately, the reviews of the Skyros Centre, seem to be muddled with reviews of Skyros Town itself, which might be a little confusing!

I loved both! My husband and I just came back from the Skyros Centre , it is unusual , I think,for couples to go to Skyros together, which I think is a shame, it has the reputation of being a destination for "singles holidays"- in the best possible way, no Club 18-30 stupidity, but a safe place for people to come, meet other like-minded people and learn something!

The writing course that I was on with Shelley Weiner was fantastic, it ended up,( due to generosity and flexibility) being 15 of us, with some great group time but never losing individual attention, a group of us have decided to carry on our experience with Shelley back in London!

The "Choose Life at Any Risk " course run by Ari, I know less about,as all participants, whether you are married to them or not,have to adhere to strict privacy rules, hashed out by the participants themselves, all I know is that my husband found.. maybe not what he was expecting, but a profoundly life changing experience.

Don't be put off by the "hippy dippy" reputation, the courses themselves are fantastic and run extremely professionally by expert facilitators, but even the people who had been initially attracted by the quality of the courses and less about the "hippy" side, found themselves unable to resist the other things that go on- the bonding, the sense of belonging and the enormous sense of community that evolves extremely quickly between 30 of the smartest, well educated and lovely people that I have had the privilege of being with in the same room at the same time!

Friendships are carried home, this is all facilitated in the most elegant,competent and effortless manner by Andrew, Julian and the lovely Vasso, not to mention the two resident cats, I cannot express the effort that they put in to making sure that everybody has a good time.

Skyros itself is lovely, you WILL get used to walking up vertical hills but the beach is gorgeous and clean, and the town is small enough to be intimate while allowing for a choice of restaurants /bars etc. it's very much a Greek destination, so no drunken Brits or Germans( I'm English and spend a lot of time in Berlin-I kind of think I can say that!), you sit on the main square and watch everyone, kids from 2-18 running around and having a wonderful time, families eating together,. and..... you can go shopping until midnight - a mention for Alexandros' jewellery shop,of which all of us availed ourselves!

It is a wonderful experience and it really is an experience that everyone takes part in, I know that I/we will be back and it's something that I would recommend to anyone!

3  Thank hitchcockblonde
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 26, 2012

When you go on a Skyros holiday you already know to expect something different based on the brochure and website materials. I attended the Life Choices course, and although it was different to what I expected, it was definitely not a disappointment! This holiday was about self reflection and the work we did as a group gave opportuntiy to do this is several ways: reflect on what you hear in the group and actively share with the group. The group I attended was led by excellent professionals, which is a pre-requisite for this type of holidays to succeed.

There is plenty of opportunity to do your own thing if you want to, or share lunches and dinners which are not incl in the half-board arrangement with all/ some of the group.
There are activities like comedy improv, yoga, massage and walks around the town, but again, this is all optional.

The town itself is gorgeous and there are plenty of shops, bars and restaurants, the locals come out after 9PM in the heat of the summer. If you want to you can party until the early hours, although if you are on a Skyros holiday its likely you would prefer not to wake up with a hang over. The sandy beach is a 10 minute down hill walk away, and has several tavernas and beach bars, ranging from the cool to the traditional - some with WIFI. Don't come on this holiday if you are having difficulty walking on cobbled streets and up/down hills.

The accommodation is dotted around the small village, so you really feel part of the Greek community. The 3 or so studios I saw were clean and comfortable.

Within the Skyros centre there was regular impromptu evening entertainment and a farewell party to which everyone can contribute iin their own way: poems, music, improv etc. The food served was always excellent; porridge, muesli, breads spreads, fruit for breakfast and Greek style 2 course meals for dinner.

Everything was well organised at this holiday thanks to the hardworking and committed Skyros staff. My only point of critisism was the very early departure from the island on the last day, when all were told the flights should not be booked before 3PM. Most of us spent many hours at Athens Airport before our flights back. I would recommend to book flights direct to and/or from Skyros if they are available, or book an extra night in Athens on the way back to avoid a very long day travelling.
Ending on a positive note, I made some great friends and will certainly stay in touch with several people. Those coming on this type of holiday come from all walks of professional life, parts of the world and age groups (30-75), everyone has an interesting story to tell and everyone around you is interested to hear those stories.

3  Thank AgPag
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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