The calm side of the mythical mountain
A sea of green glides down the slopes of charming Mt Pelion to tenderly touch the peaceful blue of the Pagasetic gulf and its sun-drenched beaches. Silver olive groves, perennial plane trees, citrus trees carrying their fragrant fruits, hundreds of healing herbs, and blossomed bouquets of camellias, gardenias and hydrangeas here and there: what scenery! Cobbled streets and shaded paths connect pieces of natural beauty with each other and take us to stunningl mountain villages and picturesque settlements by the sea alike. Late Byzantine monasteries overlook coves and vast beaches dressed in azure. The locals lively populate the squares and welcome you to the peacefulness of the shade of plane trees and the freshness of the water flowing from stone-built fountains.
Let’s take a tour!
Entering southern Pelion, there is the historic village with the beautiful central square and the local mansions with the colourful gardens. The great Greek poet Kostas Varnalis used to teach at the girl’s school there. The beautiful marble belfry and the monastery of Saint Nicolas of Paou (3km SW) are the main places of interest. Swim at the beaches of Paou and Small Paou, Lefokastro, Chorto and Kalamos, all bathed by the waters of the Pagasetic Gulf. On the contrary, Potistika, Melani, and Paltsi are on the Aegean shore.
A fishing village built where the ancient city of Olizon was situated. A very good camping site operates here, whereas the best swimming spots are the beaches of Milina, Mavri Petra, Agios Andreas, Marathias and Tzasteni. The islets of Alatas – where the monastery of Agioi Saranta is – and Prasouda float right opposite this beautiful village.
It’s said to be the most beautiful mountain villages in the area. Overlooking the Pagasetic Gulf, it decorates the green of the mountain with its stony architecture. Visit the three-aisle basilica and the Fabio museum, as well as the small radiophone museum, housed in the old elementary school.
Another stone-built village and in amphitheatrical disposition on the slopes of the mountain. Let the cobbled streets lead you to the monument of Trani Vrysi (=renowned fountain) built in 1796.
Platanias – Katigiorgis
At the fish tavernas of these villages you’ll taste something to remember before catching the boat to the islands of the Sporades group, Skiathos and Skopelos. More well organized campsites offer their services in this area.
Perched on the slopes of Mt. Tissaio, the “figurehead of Pelion”, once an important naval centre and home to well-known sponge harvesters, Trikeri is beautiful for the captains’ houses and the decorated churches. The traditions here live on and the locals participate in annual religious feasts wearing their embroidered-with-gold costumes. Very beautiful and picturesque is also the village of Agia Kyriaki, the fishing village with the traditional shipyard lying below Trikeri, on the seashore. Take a sea taxi from Alogoporos to the islet of Old Trikeri, where you can visit the beautiful monastery and also stay in it.
• A boat trip from Milina to the islet of Alatas, not only for a visit to the monastery of Agioi Saranta, but also for one to the cave of Thetis.
• A train ride from Ano Lechonia to Milies on the legendary “Mountzouris”, the oldest train operating in Greece.
• Horse-riding along the seashore at Melani and Lambinou, or through the cobbled streets of Argalasti.
• The bay of Tzasteni from above, the sunset in Milina and the quasi-vertical rocks in the sea of the beach of Mourtias.
• Trekking along the following routes: Afetes – Syki – Neochori, Argalasti – Metochi – Milina – Chorto – Trikeri, Lafkos – Milina, Agia Kyriaki – Trikeri.
• Mountaineering on Mt Thissaio and 4x4 rides overlooking the Aegean Sea.
• Having tsipouro at the squares of Argalasti and Lafkos, fresh fish in Katigiorgis and Platanias, meze (titbits) by the sea in Afissos.