A region often overlooked by tourists, the Greek area of Macedonia is a green paradise filled with stunning, Instagram-worthy villages on lake shores or hidden in the mountains. Discover this underrated paradise with Culture Trip’s small guide to some of the most beautiful towns and villages in Macedonia, Greece.
Florina is a beautiful little town located in the northwest corner of Greece – close to the borders with FYROM – that boasts stunning landscapes with rugged mountains and peaceful lakes. A former holiday destination, Florina has been experiencing a boom thanks to its growing student population. The area’s diverse architecture, which features houses of different periods and styles, makes it a compelling destination. While the houses in the centre include eclectic elements of the 1930s, others integrate decorative elements such as beautiful carved wooden doors. Florina is conveniently located a bus ride away from Prespa Lakes and has a small ski resort at Vigla. For a dining experience you won’t easily forget, head to Kontosoros, in Ksino Nero.
One of the most beautiful and livable cities in Greece, Kavala is totally underrated. Blessed with a rich past that includes Byzantine, Ottoman and Early Christian influences, the city – built like an amphitheatre on the slopes on Mount Symvolo – has plenty to offer. Make sure to visit the numerous churches, archaeological museum, castle and the Kamares and why not the Tobacco museum as well. Should you stay for a while, take a ferry and spend the day in beautiful neighboring Thassos.
Have you ever seen a waterfall within a town? This spectacular phenomenon is what you get once you visit Edessa, a city perched on rocks. The land of mythical nymphs and real-life waterfalls is blessed with peace and wild beauty. There you will find 7 waterfalls, thought Keranos is the most famous – and the biggest in Greece. You will be astonished and amazed at the eeriness of the area, which heavily relied on water for a long time. While you’re there, make sure to visit the Ancient City of Aiges, the capital of Macedonia until the 4th century BC.
A crossroads on the main lines of communication on the continent, Serres is one of the few ancient cities that has managed to exist uninterrupted since the dawn of history until today. Serres is a modern town, with broad streets where the more recent part blends pleasantly with the old. In the northern part of the city, the ruins of the ancient acropolis and the Byzantine castle are witness of the town’s rich past. The whole Serres prefecture is simply worth a visit but border town Sidirokastro in the prefecture is a must-see.
Drama is a city where there is no, well, drama. This unspoilt and untouched green gem is the ideal destination for low-key holidays. Located 150 km away from Thessaloniki, the region and the city of the same name is an excellent getaway where you can reconnect with nature and yourself. The city’s Old Town boasts Macedonian, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman influences that give it a charming, eclectic appeal. Visit the 11th century church of Agia Sofia and the many little streets downtown, and drop by Zea for a healthy and light meal followed by a trip to Honey Bar for a relaxing glass of wine after your exploration.
Located on the western part of the Greek region of Macedonia, Kastoria is a charming little town and the capital of the prefecture of the same name. Standing on the shores of its namesake lake, Kastoria is a beautiful and picturesque mix of old and new. Famous for its lake but also its fur industry, the town should definitely be on your trip itinerary should you think of visiting the area.
It would be impossible to talk about the beauty of the Greek Macedonian region without bringing up Thessaloniki. Often to referred to as Greece’s ‘second city’ it is somewhat underrated, but remains a vibrant destination just waiting to be discovered. Filled with historical buildings and monuments, museums and galleries, it is a top cultural destination – but the party animal in you won’t be disappointed either, as it boasts an diverse and eclectic nightlife scene in addition to an array of local fashion and shopping options.