Jul 08, 2023
Escape to the lesser-known paradise of Thassos, a Greek island off the tourist radar. Secluded from other Aegean Sea island gems and lacking direct links to Athens, Thassos offers tranquility and an opportunity to disconnect from hustle and bustle of Athens and popular Greek islands.
Its effortless accessibility is matched by its beautiful landscapes and breathtaking beaches, drawing visitors with its natural allure. Beyond its scenic beauty, Thassos harbours a rich historical tapestry, including a remarkable archaeological site. The island's fascinating past is intertwined with its abundant resources, luring Phoenicians who colonised it for its gold mines and later gaining renown for its mineral wealth.
Thassos became a magnet for the Parians, inhabitants of Paros Island, enticed by its abundant marble. With their deep knowledge of this exquisite material, renowned for its desirability in ancient times, they recognized the potential of Thassos' marble quarry. From the islands quarry, marble was extracted for various purposes, including the construction of remarkable structures in Ephesus and Rome.
How to get to Thassos?
Thassos offers convenient ferry access with two ports serving as gateways to the island.
The capital, Limenas, hosts a port that welcomes daily ferries from Keramoti, providing a swift 25-minute journey.
During the summer season, frequent connections to the mainland are available every 15-30 minutes. For those departing from Kavala, ferries arrive at the port of Skala Prinos, offering a slightly longer but still enjoyable voyage of approximately 1.5 hours.
There is no airport on the island of Thassos, but you are able to fly to the mainland city of Kavala. Kavala Airport, known as "Alexander the Great," operates regular year-round flights from Athens. The flight takes 1 hour.
The airport is 30km's away from the port of Kavala, so organising a transfer from the airport to the port will be your best option to catch a gerrry to Thassos.
How to get around the island of Thassos
The best way to see any island, especially Thassos is to rent a car. There are rental car businesses on the island so you will not have a problem in finding a car to rent. But during the summer season, its best to book ahead of your trip to secure you car.
Driving around the island is fairly easy as there is a circular road that takes you around the island.
Taxis are on the island and are not a bad way to see the island if you do not want to drive. Just make sure to agree on a price before you set off on your journey.
By Water Taxi
Once of the best ways to see the whole of Thassos island, and to visit secluded villages is to hire a water taxi. You will find water taxis art the port.
Again, agree on the price before setting sail!
Things to do in Thassos
Visit the Monastery of Archangel
Located just a stone's throw away from the charming village of Theologos in the southeastern part of the island, this hidden gem awaits your exploration, beckoning you on a scenic 33-kilometer journey from the island's capital, Limenas. With origins tracing back to the mystical era between the eleventh and twelfth centuries, the monastery, now serving as a nunnery, emanates a serene ambiance that transports you to a bygone era.
The monastery is a great for photos so dont forget to take your camera.
Archaeological Site of Alyki
Located 32 kilometers away from Limenas, Alyki boasts two picturesque gulfs that hold a rich tapestry of archaeological wonders. One of the highlights is Alykes, a peninsula steeped in history, housing the ancient marble quarry that witnessed the passage of time from ancient to Byzantine eras. As you gaze into the crystal-clear waters, you'll spot massive marble rocks lying beneath the surface, silently narrating tales of ancient craftsmanship.
Legend has it that Alyki was once a thriving kingdom, with a bustling population and a bustling port. The remnants of the ancient village stand as a testament to its glorious past, beckoning archaeology enthusiasts to explore its secrets. Atop the highest point, the ruins of two paleo-Christian basilicas from the 5th century offer glimpses into the spiritual life of worshippers who frequented these sacred spaces. Among them were sailors, who embarked on journeys to this island to transport precious marble. Carved into the stepping-stones are their enduring symbols of love, forever etching the names of both their beloved ones and themselves.
There is also a temple dedicated to the god Apollo, founded during the 7th century B.C.
Along the east coast of the island is the Museum of Istanbul—a well-preserved Kouros, discovered in 1896, stands as a testament to the island's enduring cultural legacy.
Ancient Theater Of Thassos
The ancient theatre was constructed in a natural cavity on the hill in Limenas. It was excavated in 1921 by the French Archaeological School. The theatre can be viewed as you make your way to the Acropolis.
Like most ancient theatres in Greece, it holds perfect acoustics, and the theatre holds concerts to this day.
Natural Pool Of Giola
One of the landmarks of Thassos is Giola, a natural rocky lagoon in the region of Astris. Rocks surround the pool about 10 meters high, from where it is possible to dive into the pristine blue waters of the natural pool.
How to reach Giola: The best way to reach Giola is to drive from Potos, follow a dirt road that leads to the beach, and ascend on foot.
Best beaches in Thassos
Located 12km's from the main town, this beach is well organised - you are able to rent an umbrella and sun beds and food is also available.
The beach is full of golden sand, just as it names alludes to!
Located 20km's from Limenas, this beach is also well organised with umbrellas, sunbeds, food and drink. This is one of the most popular beaches on the island with beautiful waters and white sand.
Located 32km's south west of the Limenas this small beach is well organised and is for the traveller who wants a beautiful setting with white sand and crystal clear blue waters.
One of the best beaches on the island, and will be unforgettable once you visit this magical sites!
Skala Potamias beach
Located 10km's south west of the main port, this beach is well organised and is long and sandy, not a pebble in site! The beach is very popular and has resorts nearby with beach bars. It boasts crystal clear waters that you will want to jump straight into!
Located 40km's south west from the main village, Kamari is a long sandy beach with beautiful swimming waters. The beach is well organised and has many facilities such as water sports and tennis courts.
Also known as Saliara Beach, marble beach was once a isolated beach but over the years it has become a very popular beach to swim at. The beach is well organised and has a mixture of sand and marble along the shore line producing a green-blue water affect.
The beach waters get deep very quickly, but after a swim relax on your sunbed with a cool beer and some food!
Best bars and restaurants on Thassos
Located in Limenas, is a traditional taverna serving local produced greek dishes. The tavern has a great selection of wines
This taverna is located at Golden Beach and serves up traditional Greek food such as souvlakia, souvla and gyro. If a traditional Greek dinner is what you are after then this is the place for you!
Located in the village of Theologos, this taverna has been operating since the 1970's. It serves traditional Greek food, and is a staple when visiting Thassos.
This beach bar is located at the end of the Old Port of Limenas right on the seaside. It is a perfect place for a afternoon cocktail or beer overlooking the crystal blue waters of the Aegean Sea.