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215 215 9814

Travel Guide to Alonissos: Everything You Need to Know to Visit the Ancient Icos of Greece

May 16, 2024 7 min read.

Why Travel to Alonissos?

Alonissos (also spelled Alónissos or Alónisos) is a small northern island in Greece. Together with its sisters, Skiathos and Skópelos, they are part of the archipelago located to the north of the Aegean Sea. Hence the name by which they are known, the "Northern Sporades". It has an area of ​​64.5 km2 and around 1,881 inhabitants (2011).

Although its soil is mountainous and rocky, Alonissos has multiple plantations of almonds and olive trees, which makes the gastronomic experience of this destination unmissable.

In addition, the island of Alonissos is known worldwide for its natural landscapes, where vegetation and crystal clear waters take center stage. Unlike other Greek islands, Alonissos stands out for its small size, its cave villages, and the lack of roads.

Therefore, if you are looking for a cozy location to relax and enjoy nature, Alonissos is a very good option for you to consider. The distance between Athens and Alonissos is 138 km, so you can visit it from there by ferry or plane.

Where Is Alonissos Located?

Here we will show you where the island of Alonissos, Greece, is located.

Map of Alonissos, an island of the Sporades archipelago

Main Attractions of Alonissos

If you are wondering what to do on the island of Alonissos, Greece, from Greca we recommend some ideas for you to take into account.

Walk through Chora, the Old Town of Alonissos

It is the old capital of the island of Alonissos, located on a hill in the southwest of the territory. After a great earthquake, this town was destroyed, so it ceased to be the main site of the island.

However, the restoration of its buildings has brought Chora back to life, making it an interesting destination for tourists. All its historic houses and buildings are reminiscent of the characteristic architecture of Greece, with limestone walls, orange roofs, and blue shutters.

But that is not all! Here you can enjoy a delicious drink with friends, especially the famous Greek beer, outdoors in one of its many taverns.

Street of Chora, the ancient capital of Alonissos, Greece

Tour of Patitiri

We recommend that you take your time to get to know the capital of Alonissos, Patitiri. Although in the past it was leveled by an earthquake, it managed to rise over time. It has a port, the port of Patitiri, from which you can make trips to other nearby islands, such as Skópelos or Skiathos.

Alonissos Marine National Park

Also known as the North Aegean Marine Park, it is the first national part of Greece, which belongs to the largest marine protected area (MPA) on the European continent. There you can find different marine species such as the Mediterranean monk seal, the short-beaked dolphin, or Eleonora's falcon. On its shores, you can also see the old shipwreck of the island of Alonissos.

View of seal in Alonissos, Greece

Alonissos Museum

It is the largest private museum in the entire Aegean, with works that portray the history, art, tradition, and naval objectives of the island and all of Greece. Although its construction seems to be from much earlier times, it was built in 2001. In its facilities, you can also learn about the life of the artisans of Alonissos.

Water Activities in Alonissos

On the island of Alonissos, you can do all kinds of water activities in the permitted areas. Among them, we highlight the boat trip through the Sporades Islands of Greece, snorkeling off the coast of a beach in Alonissos, or diving and exploring the gorgonian garden, located 40 meters deep in the Mediterranean. A very beautiful area to visit if you dive in Alonissos is the blue cave. In the case of immersing yourself in the depths of the sea and autonomously, you must have the corresponding PADI certification.

Hiking in Alonissos

Being a small island, it is possible to explore Alonissos on foot. We recommend that you start from two very important towns in the south of the island, such as Patitiri or Chora, and from there follow the marked trails to Steni Vala, a beautiful fishing center on the north coast.
You will be able to appreciate the forests and orchards of the island that characterize it so much. In case you want to visit Alonissos in one day, you should keep in mind that it will take around seven hours. In the end, you will find a change in the landscape and a cedar forest surrounding Steni Vala.

View of Alonissos, Greece

Threshing Festival in Alonissos

It is a ceremony that takes place annually during July throughout the island of Alonissos, especially in the ancient capital, Chora. The locals seek to show the old customs of the island, whether from gastronomic and craft proposals to theatrical performances or Greek dances. There is also a demonstration of the island's typical threshing kitchen, as well as a festival-specific cracked wheat-based dish called tarhana, made in large popular pots. Its recipe will transport you to ancient times. During this festival, you will see many natives wearing traditional Greek garments.

Beaches of Alonissos

Different tourists flock to the coasts of the northern islands due to their secluded beaches, not so crowded, quiet, and surrounded by nature. Here, we mention the most important ones so that you do not miss them if you decide to visit Alonissos.

Agios Dimitrios Beach in Alonissos

It is a beach located to the west of the island of Alonissos, 20 kilometers from the port of Patitiri. Its crystal clear waters are ideal for visiting with the family and snorkeling, as they are calm and shallow at all times of the year. In turn, Agios Dimitrios has tent and umbrella facilities that you can rent, as well as a nearby bar to buy food and drinks.

Chrisi Milia Beach

Also known as Skopelos Milia Beach, it is the most popular beach on the island of Alonissos, due to its proximity to different taverns that attract the most intrepid tourists. In this case, the beach tide usually has moderate waves, although it is shallow water. Just like Agios Dimitrios beach, you can find it at the western end of the island.

Kokkinokastro Beach

This beach is located in the south of Alonissos. It has coarse sand and high cliffs that surround it, unlike the two previous beaches. You can rent umbrellas and sun loungers to spend the day here. Also, you can go from Kokkinakastro to Kokinonisi, an islet also known as the red island.

Leftos Gialos Beach

It is an extremely attractive bay for visitors, due to all the vegetation of olive groves, thyme, and lavender that surrounds it, as well as its turquoise waters, ideal for tourist photos. It also has umbrella rental service facilities and in its vicinity, you can find two taverns and even have dinner in the forest.

Tzortzi Gialos Beach

It is a natural pool, ideal to visit with small children. This beach is located at the eastern end of Alonissos and does not have any facilities per se, so we recommend you bring your sand blanket or umbrella. If you want to spend a quiet day on a wild beach, this is your place.

View of Milia beach, Alonissos, Greece

Eating in Alonissos

You can eat on the island of Alonissos different dishes from fresh fish from the Aegean and Mediterranean. The island also specializes in harvesting fruits, almonds, olives, and figs, among other options. Much of the food in Alonissos, as in the rest of Greek gastronomy, is grilled or fried. A famous Alonissos cheese is called mizithra, a soft goat's cheese that is usually served fried. Another unique dish is the loukoumades, a donut made with water, flour, and yeast that the locals fry in olive oil.

In turn, you can enjoy typical Greek sweets and desserts. Don't forget to try the delicious Greek breakfast, its olive oils, and a rich local wine!

Traditional Greek Food

Tours in Alonissos

If you liked this content and imagine yourself spending some time on the island of Alonissos, we recommend that you take a look at the packages that Greca has to offer you there. This is your chance to plan a beautiful vacation in Greece!

How to get to Alonissos

The only way to get to the island of Alonissos is by ferry. Some of the closest locations to reach Alonissos are Volos, Euboea, Skiathos, Skopelos or even from Athens you can go to Alonissos by cruise or travel from Thessaloniki to Alonissos.

Days to visit Alonissos

The number of days to visit Alonissos really depends on the activities you want to do there. We recommend you allocate between 3-4 days to enjoy the days at the beach, the gastronomic proposals and the water activities. However, going for a day to the island of Alonissos is enough to get to know its main attractions.

Best date to visit Alonissos

The best months to visit the island of Alonissos are from April to June or from September to October, since the weather during this time is warm and rainfall is scarce. The perfect month to get to know the island is May, due to the combination of temperature, little rain and calm winds.

How to go from the port of Patitiri to the center

As we mentioned in the post, to go from the port of the island of Alonissos to the city center you can do it on foot, since it is a small island and the distances will not be excessively long. In any case, you can take private transport or taxi.

What clothes should I wear in Alonissos?

The clothes you should bring to Alonissos will depend on the time of year you travel. However, if you are not a person who suffers from climatic extremes, we recommend that you always dress lightly and, at most, wear a simple coat for the night.

How much money to take to Alonissos

Prices on this island of Alonissos tend to be somewhat high, as in most of the Greek islands. We recommend that you plan to spend a minimum of €100 per person each day, between accommodation, food and crossings.

Cost of the trip to Alonissos

To know the costs of packages to Alonissos, you can have a look to Greca's web page.

Sleep in Alonissos

The best area to stay in Alonissos is undoubtedly the capital of the island, Patitiri, due to its availability of accommodation, geographic location and number of services it offers.
However, the town of Chora is also recommended if you are looking for a place further away from the city. If you want to have a quiet and different stay, you can get away in the small towns of the island, which also have basic amenities and are surrounded by nature.

Early booking in Alonissos

If you are looking to stay more than one day on the island of Alonissos, we recommend you book your accommodation about 3-4 months in advance, since the demands of tourists are moderate and prices vary considerably according to the proximity to the date of arrival.

Nights out in Alonissos

The island of Alonissos, unlike other Greek islands, is renowned for its laid-back nightlife. If you are looking for a romantic dinner, to visit a tavern with a sea view or to go out with family and friends, we recommend that you go to the center of the island or to Chora.

Having fun in Alonissos

Among the activities to do on the island of Alonissos we can mention some for you to take into account:
• Visit other nearby islands (one of the most famous excursions in the area is to go to Thessaloniki)
• Do nautical activities
• Take walks around the city and the beach.

Official currency of Alonissos

The official exchange rate in Alonissos, as in the rest of the territory of Greece and Europe, is the euro.

Is Alonissos safe?

Absolutely! Traveling to Alonissos is extremely safe. We recommend that you pay some attention to your belongings in public places. However, the risk of theft is extremely low.

Book in Alonissos

To book your trip to Alonissos, you can contact one of Greca's sales representatives or contact us through our official page, completing the form on your site and date of interest.

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