The island of Skiathos (The Sporadic Islands)

The southern Sporadic Islands seem a little like the continuation of the Pilion to the Aegean Sea that exits the peninsula. The five islands that form the Sporadic are among the less known among foreigners. So they say, as when I visited Skiathos, it was packed with tourists from all over Europe…

Skiathos is a green island with beautiful beaches, many Greek Orthodox monasteries, lonely villages and thick pine forests. The architecture of the island is prevalently continental (tiled roofs), whereas the one of the Sporadic Islands of Alonissos and Skyros is more insular (flat roofs). Agriculture in Samos is based on the cultivation of olives and the Aleppo pine, the tree of which the rosin is taken for the rosin wine aroma. The beaches of the island are beautiful, sometimes situated with a fairly difficult access, but they are perfect for having a lonely swim or a sunbath. The small villages are nice and are inviting for taking a walk, especially in the evening. If you want to experience the whole beauty of the island, the chapels, the churches, the archaeological evidence and the hidden villages in the centre of the island, it is necessary to rent a car or a motorbike. The food in the less touristy taverns of the harbour is good and it is worth trying the local products such as “amygdalota (marzipan)”, “amygdalosoumi (almond milk)” or “karydopita (nut tart)” as well as the excellent honey and the dried plumes, a traditional special ingredient used for savoury and sweet dishes. And what about the carnival on the Sporadic island nearby, Skyros? Unforgettable.

11.11.2005 / Translated from italian by Giorgia Guarini