The picturesque Chora with its 365 churches and the… cinematic beaches of the island will not leave anyone unmoved
Skopelos is the island with a thousand faces: Immersed in greenery with dreamy beaches, with 365 churches and with influences from land and sea.
It is the island of “Mamma mia!”, whose images are embedded in the hearts and dreams of millions of young people, hoping that one day they will visit it and relive what the protagonists of the world musical lived, which is still “breaking” box offices around the world .
Tourism arrived on the small island of captains and shipwrights in the early 1970s, when the first “foreigners” appeared, and it soon became a favorite destination for those “in the know”.
Today it is an island with intense life, but also a lot of calm – depending on the requirements of each visitor.
The picturesque Chora with 365 churches
The center of the island is Chora, with its beautiful alleys, stone arches, cobblestones with steps and stone-roofed or tiled houses with colorful shutters that make it unique.
Everywhere bougainvillea of every shade, basil in the windows and jasmine that smell of musk, set a tone that only Skopelos possesses.
The settlement has been classified as preserved, by Presidential Decree, since 1978, so its unparalleled beauty has remained unchanged, despite the great tourist development.
Characteristic is the Town Hall building on the waterfront with its blue-green windows, while a little above dominates one of the most beautiful mansions of the island, of the Petralia family.
The capital of the island was gradually built on the ruins of ancient Peparithos, which was in the Kastro area and is hidden and almost invisible from the sea. Later the Venetians repaired the castle and built the Episcopate which survives to this day. The amphitheater way of building was intended to protect the city, since Skopelos had been developed since ancient times and was a rich island.
The pirates who threatened the island forced the inhabitants to live inside the castle, but over time and after the danger of piracy began to disappear, the Chora was built and extended towards the shore to create the Frangomahalas in its heyday with the large mansions and shopping streets, such as Sofadakia.
There are more than 365 churches, with the oldest being Agios Athanasios, in the Castle, dating from the 11th century, while in the quarter of Christ, which was the first to be built outside the castle in the 17th century, there are even more churches dedicated by the families of seamen to protect their own people.
These churches, by majority, are basilicas or basilicas with a dome, with the most characteristic being Saint Michael, where the remains of the ancient church, on which it was built, have been incorporated.
The cinematic Kastani and the other magical beaches of the island
The beaches sought by the thousands of visitors to the island are unparalleled
– The closest long beach to Chora that is flooded with people in summer is the famous Stafylos, which takes its name from Stafylos, son of Ariadne and Dionysus who was also the first king of Skopelos in ancient times. With steps, one reaches the wave and enjoys the Aegean.
– Next to Staphylos, after a small embankment where the “neck” of the small peninsula is located, the tomb of Staphylos with the royal sword from the Mycenaean period was found in the 1930s, which is exhibited in the National Archaeological Museum of Athens. Passing this small hill is the much-loved Velanio, with its quietness, clear blue waters and, above all, isolation for those who love nature and nudism.
– To the west of the island are the largest and most famous beaches, first and perhaps the largest of all, Milia, which offers all kinds of options, from the organized to the free part and overlooking the islet of Dasia, which looks like a forest in the middle of the sea ( central photo).
– Immediately after Milia is Kastani, smaller, but organized and cosmopolitan, also overlooking the islet of Dasia. Most of the filming of the movie “Mamma Mia!” took place here.
– Limnonari is also a special beach which, on windy days, is an ideal place to rest since, as its name indicates, it is a closed windless bay with fine sand and crystal clear waters.
– The beaches of the island continue with Panormos as the protagonist with its wonderful pebbly beach, deep blue waters, sheltered cove and dozens of taverns.
– At a short distance, drowned in pine trees, are the famous “Andrines” with its luxurious five-star hotels that every year host world-class names looking for privacy and tranquility above the emerald waters.
The Andrines got their name from the pirate Andrina who used the sheltered bay of Blo and Panormos to hide her ships, while legend has it that she hid her treasure in the area.
– To the east and very close to Glossa, is the well-known Ai Giannis, in Kastri, where the famous wedding scene in “Mama Mia!” was filmed.
Ai Giannis with its incredibly beautiful little church is a huge rock in the sea, which has taken the name “Meteor of the Aegean”.
What will you (well) eat
But Skopelos is not only the blue of the sky and the sea, the green of Nature and the architecture, but also an excellent culinary experience that drives Greeks and foreigners crazy.
At the top of the flavors is the famous Skopje cheese pie, which is said to be the best breakfast, and is made with a rolled sheet, inside of which there is a very good quality feta cheese, and it is baked rolled up in the pan.
Among the local dishes, famous is the rofos stifado, the Skopelli goat made from local goats of the island, the sweet pumpkin pie made from yellow pumpkin, as well as the onion pie with sweet cream.
Skopje sweets include marzipan and augato, which are spoon sweets made from a variety of white plums grown only on the island.
Even more famous are the rosettes and the hops, sweets based on almonds and flower water, which tradition wants to be the main treat at weddings, while the local honey, which is pine honey, is not missing from any traditional Skopje house.
I am Frederick Tuttle, who works in 247 News Agency as an author and mostly cover entertainment news. I have worked in this industry for 10 years and have gained a lot of experience. I am a very hard worker and always strive to get the best out of my work. I am also very passionate about my work and always try to keep up with the latest news and trends.