Skiathos is blessed with some of the most exquisite beaches in the Aegean Sea. The island swells with tourists during the summer months – but, with more than 60 beaches, there’s something for everyone, whether that’s a cosmopolitan beach, humming with bars and music, or quiet coves hidden away at the end of hillside hiking paths.
Elia Beach is a secluded stretch of sand, tucked away on the west coast of Skiathos, near the smaller Agistros Beach. Those who love hiking can take the hour-long walk through a pine forest from Koukounaries, but you can also access the beach by car or motorcycle. Wander along the long sand stretch, cool off in the turquoise waters, and wash down some sizzling calamari with a beer at the small beach taverna.
Koukounaries Beach, in the southwest of the island, is considered one of the best beaches in Greece. It boasts a 1,200m-long (3,937ft) sweep of bleach-blonde sand, unspoiled crystal-clear waters and is surrounded by a protected nature reserve. It has a crowded, fun and busy ambience that never bores. Chill under a line of umbrellas on one of the organised sunbeds before eating at one of many beachside restaurants and trying your hand at a number of water sports.
In the south of Skiathos, about 7km (4.3mi) from the main town, sits Agia Paraskevi Beach. This stretch of golden sand is teeming with water sports facilities: water skiing, jet skiing and boat trips from the shore are just a number of the activities on offer. But if you just want to chill, opt for lying on the warm sand, swimming in pristine waters and taking refuge from the sun in one of the local tavernas that line the sea.
One end of Agia Eleni Beach is lined with straw umbrellas and a tropical suave beach bar, where you can grab a cocktail and watch the day sink into dusk. The other end is scattered with rocks and clear aquamarine shallow water, where you can pick up your snorkel and marvel at colourful sea life. Like Xenia, the beach is also near Koukounaries in the west of the island, surrounded by leafy trees and natural beauty.
On the southern coast, about 8km (5mi) from Skiathos Town, you’ll find Kolios Beach. Frequent public buses ferry visitors from the town to the organised but quiet beach. Here, you can spend all day swimming in the crystalline waters, chilling on a sundeck or tucking into some tzatziki at one of the small tavernas. For those who want some more action, there’s a water sports centre that offers a variety of different activities.
Kastro Beach sits on the island’s northernmost headland, wedged in a rocky cove. To get here, hike down a trail from the steep slope, or take a boat from Skiathos Town. Big steps from a rustic, tropical restaurant lead down onto the secluded pebbly beach. Once here, sit back against a boulder on the sand, warming under the sun that glitters across the serene waves.
Paralia Lalaria is thought to be one of the most exquisite beaches in Greece. Its white cliffs and striking natural rock arch – that plunges into the transparent sea – sets it apart from the other wild beaches on Skiathos’ isolated northern coast. This pebbly strand of beach can only be reached by boat from Skiathos Town, so it’s ideal for those looking for a truly tranquil spot to explore. Top tip: bring a snorkel set to explore the assortment of caves and rocks for hours.
Kanapitsa Beach, located 6km (4mi) from Skiathos Town, is an uncrowded spot surrounded by walking trails that cross the wonderful peninsula area of Kalamaki. The beach boasts a charming laid-back ambience, where the north-easterly breeze brings cool comfort to bathers under the burning hot sun. You also can take part in thrilling water sports activities like scuba diving or jet skiing. At twilight, sip on a cocktail from one of the beachside bars as the sunset casts a glowing pink light over the golden sand.
Maratha Beach, which sits roughly 0.5km (0.3mi) from Koukounaries Beach on the southwest coast, is a slim stretch of honey-coloured sand surrounded by fragrant pine trees that provide deep shade in the sizzling heat. Maratha has all the amenities to sustain a whole day of sunbathing, such as beds, straw umbrellas and a local taverna with tasty Greek dishes. The beach is easy to get to using public buses, which run frequently from Skiathos Town.
Explore more of Skiathos by booking a stay at a local hotel with Culture Trip. Don’t miss the chance to visit the best authentic Greek restaurants in Athens or the must-see attractions in the capital city. Round off your stay by visiting some world-class beaches and staying at one of the best hotels in Athens.
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