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Pelion: The Excellent Guide to Greece’s Secret Peninsula

Pelion is a definitly natural heaven in Greece! Actually, it is a giant mountain dotted with interesting traditional villages and fringed by amazing beaches! The jewels of Pelion are hands down its traditional villages! Makrinitsa, Portaria, Milies, and Tsagarada are among the most lovely villages in Pelion. They are made up of classic little Greek houses with grey stone roofs and paved alleys that ooze charm in abundance!

On the eastern side of Pelion peninsula Greece lie some beautiful beaches with fascinating blue waters. Mylopotamos, Fakistra and Agios Ioannis are some of the best Pelion beaches you definitely have to visit!

For those of a non-beachy disposition, Pelion has a lot to offer in terms of natural beauty. The variety of natural landscapes make Pelion a top holiday destination all year round! The closest big town to Pelion is Volos, which has a busy port and a small airport that receives charter flights.

To one side, the Pagasetic Gulf and, to the other, the Aegean. In between, a magical mountain to discover: Pelion! Water gurgles in the fountains. Sunbeams stream through the leaves of the plane trees, apple trees, oaks, beeches, gardenias, hydrangeas, camellias. Nature flourishes in this fertile soil of Thessaly. In the autumn, a surreal palette of orange and red unfolds before you. Pathways, old churches, beaches with peacock-coloured water. Up high, its villages teeter on the edge of the mountain. One weekend is not enough to take it all in. If you are looking for something wild, yet peaceful, unexplored with romantic beaches then this travel guide Pelion Greece is for you. Welcome to magnificent Pelion.

Where is Pelion

The area of Pelion is located in Thessaly region in central Greece. The town of Volos is the capital of the Magnesia region in Greece, and it is in that area that Pelion is located. From Volos, you can start your exploration to the beautiful villages of Pelion.

How to get to Pelion Greece

Ways to travel to Pelion by car

In order to reach Pelion from Athens by car, you need to drive through the National Greek Road Athens – Thessaloniki and follow the route to Lamia, Larisa and then Volos. When you reach Volos, you will follow the route to Pelion. The distance between Athens and Pelon is about 360 km.

Ways to travel to Pelion by bus

In order to reach Pelion, you need to travel to Volos first. Bus routes from Volos to almost every village of Pelion are carried out regularly. If you travel from Athens to Volos, you have to take the KTEL bus from Liossion bus station. You can get more specific information on click here.

Ways to travel to Pelion by flight

There is no airport in Pelion. The closest one is Nea Anchialos National Airport in Volos. This airport serves a few low-cost flights from abroad and it operates only during summer. If you want to travel by plane, then you should better reach Athens or Thessaloniki in the first place, as Eleftherios Venizelos and Makedonia Airport receive flights all year round. Afterwards, you can reach Pelion by car or by KTEL bus, as mentioned above. For more info click here.

Once you are in Volos, you can drive to Pelion villages or take the local buses.

What to do in Pelion

Travel to the home of the mythical Centaurs

So much beauty inevitably created myths. According to mythology, Centaurs ruled Pelion, led by the wisest of them all, Chiron, who taught medicine and made the snake its symbol and who initiated both Achilles and Asclepius into his secrets.

The ‘balconies’ of the Pagasitikos

On the way from Volos to Pelion, you will pass Portaria and Makrinitsa, the star villages of the area. Stone fountains, quaint homes, paths, boutique bed & breakfasts and five-star hotels, churches and delicious local dishes. Below, the panoramic view of Volos and the Pagasitikos Gulf is laid out at your feet. In these villages – jewels of Pelian architecture – you’ll experience what quality of life really means.

Let’s go skiing

Skiing with a view of the Aegean? Exactly! The ski resort in Agriolefkes, at 1,470m above sea level, awaits you. Four slopes for advanced skiers and one for beginners (7km in total), and a warm and cosy refuge for après-ski. Stores, cafes, a ski school and, of course, an incredible sea view.

Tsangarada: a village in the shade of the planes

You’re standing in the shade of the sky-high plane trees. Take in the refreshing breeze. You are in Agia Paraskevi, one of the four districts of Tsangarada, one of the most famous villages in Pelion. You’ll explore the others – Agios Stefanos, Agia Kyriaki and Taxiarches – by footpath, among the chestnut trees, fruit trees and flowers. Tsangarada, a favourite destination for years, is full of nature and life.

Zagora: the apple-tree village

Zagorin apples, chestnuts and cherries are famous throughout Greece. They are the staples of Zagora, the historic, wealthy and largest village in Pelion. From the beginning of the 20th century, Zagorians turned to agriculture, and to apples in particular. Their Agricultural Cooperative was founded in 1916.

Pelion’s villages

Pouri, Keramidi, Mouresi, Kissos, Milies, Vizitsa, Pinakates, Agios Georgios Nilias, Agios Lavrentios. The villages of Pelion, each with its own character, are worth a visit. Incredible architecture, traditional bed & breakfasts, shady squares with churches, traditional coffee shops and tavernas. You’ll feel like a local.

Old churches

The old churches of Pelion hide surprises. The Pammegiston Taxiarchon monastery in Milies was renovated in 1764 and is renowned for its amazing acoustics. Why? Some 48 jars, upside-down, are hidden on the roof and five underground wells communicate. The result is awe-inspiring. At Kissos, you’ll visit Agia Marina, built in 1650, and admire its beautiful murals inspired by the Apocalypse, as well as, the Old and New Testaments. All of these monasteries, churches and attractions will enchant you.

Aegean waters

As you make your way down the mountain, you’ll come across large and small beaches with white pebbles or fine sand and crystal-clear water. In the beaches of Pelion, you’ll swim under the gaze of aristocratic Pelion houses and plane trees that practically reach the water.

Old world charm and modern luxury

A stately stay, literally. Dozens of stately stone homes, with traditional decor, living rooms with fireplaces and stone patios with flowers, await you throughout the villages of Pelion. If you’re looking for modern luxury, you’ll find 5-star hotels, private villas or condos with suites and pools. Their greatest advantage: all are located amidst Pelion’s lush green landscape, which provides a continuous cool breeze, even during August’s heat waves.

All aboard!

Rendezvous at Milies, the train station, to wait for the Mountzouris, the famous choo choo of 1895, that arrives puffing to a halt while you applaud. The conductor turns on the engine manually and the charming little train takes off for Ano Lehonia. A magical ride through trees and forests, above 12 bridges – a trip worth taking.

Damouhari: a scene from a film

The beach at Damouhari is a postcard brought to life. A lovely landscape, moody and wild at the same time, divided in two by a strip of land: the Old and New Damouhari. The tavernas offer a five-star dinner with a view. The marina was the location of the Dancing Queen scene in Mamma Mia.

Pelion’s paths

Pelion was, and is, a living mountain. Discover it through the dense network of cobblestone, trails and paths: Milies-Tsangarada, Tsangarada-Damouhari-Ai Iannis, Kissos-Mouresi, Chania-Kissos, Portaria-Chania, Damouhari-Fakistra. Experienced hikers and nature lovers will discover the mountain’s secrets, the history and rich vegetation.

Things to do in Pelion

Gifts of the earth: Sweet preserves and flowers

Take the colours of Pelion home with you in jars and pots. All around Pelion, women make sweet preserves in a dozen incredible flavours: try them all. In the villages you can buy pots with hydrangeas, camellias, gardenias. Take home some soil too, it makes all the difference.


Two beautiful narrow canyons await you at Tsangarada: Fakistras and Milopotamos. They end in two beaches of the same names.

South Pelion

From Milina until Trikeri: a destination for locals and intrepid travellers. Fresh fish, delicious fish soup and seafood in the tavernas. By boat you’ll discover the hidden beauty of the Pagasitikos.

Villages of Pelion Region

The standouts of Pelion are hands down its intimate little villages. The most popular villages for winter holidays in Pelion are Makrinitsa, Portaria, Miles, Vizitsa, Tsagarada, and Chania, where a ski center lies. Their deep-green woodland backdrop and traditional houses will steal your breath! As for the best villages for summer holidays in Pelion, Agios Ioannis, Horefto, Platania, and Milina are top choices.

Pelion is full of picturesque and traditional villages perched along dense green mountainsides or boarding the seaside. Here are some of the most attractive villages to visit in Pelion, all with a different style but yet very beautiful: Makrinitsa, Tsagarada, Milies, Vizitsa, Portaria, Zagora, Kissos, Afissos, Chorto, Mouresi, Neochori, Pouri, Ano Volos, Agia Kyriaki, Trikeri, Argalasti, Milina, Pinakates, Chania, Lafkos, Keramidi.

Beaches of Pelion

Apart from its picturesque villages, Pelion is also famous for its exotic beaches. The coastline of Pelion is littered with some of the finest beaches in Greece! Mylopotamos, Agios Ioannis, Horefto, and Fakistra are the best beaches in Pelion. A dip in their enticingly clear waters will excite you! If you manage to peel yourself away from the beautiful Pelion beaches, you should go sightseeing to discover the stone-made churches in the area. And, of course, don’t miss to taste the local delicacies at the delightful traditional taverns of Pelion!

The peninsula of Pelion hosts some of the most beautiful beaches in Greece. With crystal water and surrounded by steep green mountainsides, Pelion beaches provide some truly beautiful places to relax. The most impressive beaches in Pelion are found on the eastern side of the peninsula, including Mylopotas, Agios Ioannis, Papa Nero, and Horefto. You will find below a list with the best beaches in Pelion Greece.

List of All Beaches around Pelion Region

Discover 10 beautiful Pelion beaches: Mylopotamos, Agios Ioannis, Fakistra, Papa Nero, Horefto, Damouchari, Mourtia, Katigiorgis, Platanias, Potistika.

Map of Beaches and Villages of Pelion Region

Where to stay around Pelion region

Pelion is a large region with many accommodations all around. Depending on the season, the best choice may vary. In any case, a private means of transport is required to explore Pelion as public transport is not much convenient.

Summer hotels in Pelion are conveniently found in the northern and southern part of the peninsula. In northern Pelion, choose accommodation in Agios Ioannis, Tsagarada or Horefto. In southern Pelion, pick a stay in Platanias, Milina or Horto. All these Pelion hotels have easy access to beaches and tourist facilities, like shops and taverns.

For winter holidays, the most appropriate places to stay are Makrinitsa, Portaria, and Milies. These places have traditional architecture and bus connection with Volos Town. If you are heading to the ski center of Pelion, the closest accommodations are found in Chania, Portaria, and Makrinitsa.

Where to stay in Volos Pelion

Best Places to Stay in Portaria Pelion

Where to stay in Tsagkarada Pelion

Best Places to Stay in Makrinitsa Pelion

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