Alonnisos is an island of lush, green tranquillity, with a unique heritage of flora, fauna and marine life. It is an earthly paradise for the nature lovers. Ιt was one of the first Islands of the Aegean to be inhabited, as indicated by Neolithic settlement remnants found at the Cape of Kokkinokastro. It is the most remote major isle of the Northern Sporades and is only 3 km off the island of Skopelos.
Upon reaching the island you will encounter Patitiri, the picturesque central port and capital of the island that took its name from the wine presses used by the locals since antiquity. It is the most central spot on the island with many hotels, local taverns and cafes to choose from, as well as super market and the one and only bank on the island.
One can get the bus or a taxi from Patitiri or follow the old stone-paved footpath to get to Old Village that is located up on the hill.
The Old Village (Chora) used to be the old capital of the island until 1965, when a catastrophic earthquake forced the residents to desert it. Located in a privileged part of the island, the view from the Old Village is amazing. It has traditional houses full of flowers, many local taverns, cafes and bars that are open all day long in summertime.
Visit the Museum of Alonnisos that hosts interesting artefacts, the beautiful stone-roofed churches of Agios Georgios, Christ, with their wonderful murals, the windmill at the entrance, the Administration building and the remaining Byzantine walls.
The beaches around the island consist of pebbles. Agios Dimitrios, Chrisi Milia, Votsi, Steni Vala, Kalamakia, Mikros and Megalos Mourtias, Vrysitsa, Kokkinokastro, Marpounta, and Tzortzi Yialos are just some of the beaches of Alonnisos which illustrate the majestic natural beauty of the Aegean.
Peristera, Kyra Panagia, Skantzoura, Gioura, Piperi and Psathoura are called the Erimonisa – deserted islands – and make up the nucleus of National Marine Park. The Park, which is the largest protected marine area in Europe, includes 22 of the unihabited islands, islets, and part of the island of Alonissos rocky outcrops.
The many caves along the coastline provide the ideal environment for the largest population of the endangered species of Mediterranean monk seal (monachus monachus) to rest, live and reproduce. It is also the refuge for rare seabirds and dolphins.
Gioura island is inaccessible and rocky with a wild beauty. One can reach the island only via a small bay on the south-west side. A footpath starts here for the neolithically inhabited stalactite cave of Cyclops. According to mythology, this is the cave where Odysseas was imprisoned by the famous Cyclops Polyphimos. Gioura is part of the Marine National Park as it is a habitat for rare species of birds and animals as well as for a rare species of wild goats.
Kyra-Panagia island (or Pelagonissi) used to be the site of ancient Alónissos. It took its name from a 12th century Monastery on the eastern coast, and it is dedicated to the Birth of the Virgin Mary. It has two ports, enchanting Planitis and Agios Petros. Planitis is one of the biggest natural harbours of the Mediterranean Sea.
Pipéri island forms the core zone of the National Park where the Mediterranean seals and rare mammals live and survive. Access to this island by boat is prohibited.
Peristera (or Xiro) is a dry island which has only a few non-permanent habitants and some small sandy beaches and bays ideal for swimming. The name Peristera means Dove and was given to the island due to its shape.
Skatzoura has beautiful small beaches and ports, and the impressive Evaggelistria Monastery. An important number of Aegean seagulls and other seabirds nest in the small islets around.
Psathoura is a volcanic island dominated by its lighthouse with a height of 25 metres, one of the tallest in the Aegean, constructed in the 19th century by the French. The ruins of an ancient city can be seen in the sea bottom. While sailing to Psathoura, you may visit Mandraki beach, one of the best beaches in Sporades area.
For more info on Alonnisos island visit: