Skiathos Island is our last stop and it definitely is a good choice of destination to end our Sporades Island-hopping trip. Comparing to the other 2 islands of Alonissos and Skopelos in the same region, Skiathos is definitely the most urbanized, the most lively and the most developed island of all three. Luxurious 5 star properties, high-end restaurants, cafes and bars and pristine, long beaches – what more can you really ask for for an island for your ultimate, fun getaway trip?
I have to admit that although I’m quite old enough to not be able to handle the chaos of a party island, I kind of embraced it as a welcome change for me during this holiday. I have been used to visiting laidback islands during this trip that I never really realized how much I have missed the chaos and the crowd until I have set foot on Skiathos town. The cosmopolitan change in an island setting was beautiful for me – I stopped on my tracks in the middle of the town just to absorb it all in. I have probably bothered the pedestrians walking past me by standing still in the middle of the path but I don’t care, really. I felt like, I truly belonged there at the time. The whole ambiance of the place will make you feel young, exhilarated and happy. You might say that I’m exaggerating but that’s exactly what I felt when I was at the Old Town of Skiathos.
Luckily, we have made the decision of making a booking in a hotel located in the town area. I was relieved about since I know that the Greek Mister would be drinking nonstop in this island. I’d be more relaxed to have a good time knowing that The Greek Mister wouldn’t have to drive after a nightout of drinking and that our accommodation would be just a few minutes away by walking.
Where We Stayed in Skiathos:
As this part of our trip was also last minute, we booked our accommodation one day before we took the ferry from Skopelos. We departed Skopelos at 1615hrs and arrived Skiathos at 1715hrs via Hellenic Seaways. The hotel was quite hard to find and my phone’s GPS wasn’t working properly so it took us quite awhile to locate our accommodation. As we arrived at the town, we called up the owner and we were immediately met by her to lead us to our hotel for 2 nights. It’s called Main Guest House, quite an odd name for a hotel isn’t it? Turns out that the property itself was also quite odd – it doesn’t look as in the photo when we booked it. Not at all. The rooms were too small and the bathroom didn’t have much hot water either. It was clean though which is the most important for me so at the end, I figured that it’s still a good choice specially since we’re right in the middle of the town. The only problem was, the area where the hotel is located smelled of sewage. It’s not the hotel’s fault I know but it was a bit bothersome.
Where We Ate in Skiathos:
Portobello Cafe, Bar and Garden Restaurant
We never really did actually eat here but I thought I have to write about this as it has been practically our base for the whole duration of our stay to have a drink or two. The main reason? Location! It’s very near our hotel in the middle of the main walkway of Skiathos town. It’s a good place to sit to watch people walking about which is what we did normally whenever we’re here. On top of that, the garden restaurant and the bar itself is beautiful! Very inviting and very conducive to have a drink, relax and enjoy the last few days left of our holiday. We’d order a drink or two here before going for dinner and after dinner, we’ll cap the night off in the same place. The Greek Mister and his friend stayed both times until around 5am – they do feel young here. :p
Mouragio Fish Taverna
I was once again craving for seafood on our first night in Skiathos so we walked around the town up to the port to look for a fish taverna. We came across Mouragio located at the far end of the port – it looked decent with reasonable prices so we sat down and ordered our dinner. When the fried sardines was served with its head still intact, both The Greek Mister and his friend let out a grunt. Apparently, you’re not supposed to serve sardines without removing its head and that for them is a sign that the taverna is not going to be good. It went downhill after that, dishes after dishes – both of them have something to say as to how it was supposed to be served. Me on the other hand, was too busy stuffing my face with all the seafood dishes in front of me and have no idea what they’re talking about. It all tasted good to me. When the bill came and we were not offered any free desserts which is the norm in all of the tavernas we’ve eaten at, they officially hated the place. :p
Compared to the previous restaurant, Taverna Folia received an entirely opposite response from The Greek Mister and his friend. Both of them loved the food and so did I. We had pork dishes – pork steak for the Greeks and pork souvlaki for me. I ended up eating The Greek Mister’s pork steak though as it was extremely delicious! (I suddenly felt a craving for pork steak as I type this entry.) The service was absolutely wonderful too and the location’s perfect! A bit too small though for a restaurant as good as this.
Things To Do in Skiathos:
The place to be in Skiathos – dining, drinks, shopping and even an open air cinema is offered here. It’s a small town compared to Skopelos so it was easier to navigate but there are smaller alleys that are worth discovering as it is in these alleys where treasures are to be found. I was feeling a bit tired when we decided to walk around the town on our second day to hunt for a good restaurant to dine at but as we started, I realized that I should forget about being tired and get my camera ready since there’s something pretty to be found at every turn. I specially love the Old Port area where you have the view of Bourtzi.
As soon as we’ve arrived in Skiathos, we drove towards the most popular beach called Koukounaries. It was past 6pm when we arrived so I was a bit surprised when we parked the car at the open parking lot near the beach – it was packed. At the same time that we got out of the car, a bus load of tourists stopped at the bus stop and a throng of bikini-clad ladies got out and headed to Koukounaries beach. I thought we were already late for the party, but I guess it was just getting started at the time.
Koukounaries beach is a mile-long beach of golden sands surrounded by a pine-forest which sets it apart from all the other beaches I’ve been to during this trip. Restaurants and trendy cafes/bars are dotted around the area. Watersports facilities are also offered. As much as I want to love it, I couldn’t – it was too crowded, too busy and too active for me. We stayed at the farther end of the beach, far away from the crowd and lounged there for about 2 hours before we realized that we’re all very hungry which was our cue to leave. Anyway, if you’re up for a buzzing beach – then this place is for you.
This is more my kind of beach, Elia Beach is more laidback, not crowded and offers a long stretch of sandy beach as well just like Koukounaries. The rightmost part of the beach is reserved for the nudist while the leftmost part is for those who doesn’t have the guts to go nude on a beach *raises hands*. What I really love about Elia beach though is that it’s very breezy which makes your stay there very refreshing even if the sun is shining right at you. It was in Elia beach that I was able to sunbathe the longest time.
The road getting to this beach is very tricky though – mostly dirt road along the edge of a mountain. Quite scary is you ask me specially if you’re not an experienced driver.
Looks very similar to Koukounaries and has the same amount of crowd in it, needless to say – I wasn’t a big fan of it.
We stayed only for 3 days and 2 nights in Skiathos which we realized is not enough to explore this lively island. There was so much to see and so much to do that I wish we stayed longer but probably not in the same hotel that we stayed at. :p
Related Blog Posts:
Greece | Starting Our Skiathos Holiday in Koukounaries Beach.
Greece | Love At First Sight With Skiathos Old Town.
Greece | Elia Beach, An Isolated Haven In Skiathos.
Greece | Banana Beach, The Party Beach of Skiathos.
Linking with: Friday Postcards.