Skyros (or Skiros) island is not be the first island you think of for your holiday in Greece, but it does have a devoted following which comes back year after year, drawn by its many unique features. One of them, the diminutive Skyrian pony, looks like it might have escaped from the frieze of the Parthenon.
Skyros (or Skiros) might be the least popular of the Sporades islands, but it is one of the most beautiful ones! Untouched by international tourists, Skyros is one of those Greek islands with unique character and tradition.
Skyros main village Chora is located along the slopes of a hill, offering great view to the Aegean Sea. Walk around the narrow streets of Chora, have a relaxing coffee and explore the Medieval Castle above the town. The most popular beach on the island is Molos, a long crystal coast with many tourist facilities. Around the island, there are equally beautiful places with fewer facilities and totally relaxing atmosphere.
This island in the Sporades is also famous for its carved furniture and painted ceramics. Fresh lobsters abound and are still affordable, though the days when you could have them for breakfast, lunch and dinner are gone. Like hiking? Marked trails help you explore the island’s two faces: the rocky south, where the British poet, Rupert Brooke lies buried, and the pine-forested west. Plus, there are beaches for every taste and a main town that puts on its best every night for your holiday entertainment.
Where is Skyros island
The least famous island of Sporades, Skyros is located in the center of the Aegean Sea. Skyros island is a place with vivid tradition and special character.
An amazingly beautiful island, Skyros is the largest, but quietest, of the Sporades islands. It is the very idea of a traditional Greek island, and its hospitable people and pretty surroundings will enchant you. This is an excellent island for couples and families with young children, but also for people who in general just want a really relaxing holiday.
How to get to Skyros island
The airport of Skyros island (Skiros) is found 4 km north of Chora, on the northern side of the island. It receives only domestic flights from Athens and Thessaloniki. The flight time from Athens to Skyros is 40 min. There are no charters and direct international flights to the island. Outside the airport, there are taxis to take tourists to their hotel around the island.
There are no ferries from Athens to Skyros. Ferries to Skyros depart only from Kymi, a small port town on the eastern side of Evia island. Buses to Kymi depart daily from Liossion KTEL Station in Athens. Passengers can reach Kymi via Chalkis: they take the bus from Athens to Chalkis and then change and take another bus to Kymi. Ferries to Skyros from Kymi depart 2-3 times per day and the trip is 1h30min. They are operated by the small ferry company Skyros Shipping Company (SNE) and tickets are not available online. In high season, there is also ferry connection between Skyros and Alonissos.
Transportation in Skyros
Skyros is an ideal destination for relaxing holidays! Although it is a tranquil island in general, untouched by mass tourism, there are numerous interesting sights to visit and things to do in Skyros. Find out how you can move from one place to the other and see Skyros at its best!
Local buses in Skyros
Public transportation is an affordable and at the same time amusing way to explore the whole region! Buses in Skyros depart from Chora with direction to Linaria port, linking in this way many villages together.
Car and motorbike rentals in Skyros
With a car or motorcycle, you can explore the island at your own pace and gain access to the most secluded spots! In case you don’t have your own vehicle, it is an excellent idea to rent one for your sightseeing trips! There are several car rental agencies in central spots all over Skyros.
Best time to visit Skyros
The weather on Skyros island is the Mediterranean, which means mild winters and hot summers. November to February are the cold months and it is raining a lot. These rains provide the necessary conditions to grow so much greenery on the island. The winter blows a lot in winter and this leads to winter storms, which can be quite fierce.
Therefore, you are advised to stay indoors when winter storms blow in winter. The summer months offer very light rain and comfortable temperatures. June to September are the hottest months, with the temperature varying between 40°C in July to 28°C in September. Rains are few in summer, but northern winds blow frequently, so beaches should be avoided these days. Have in mind that beaches on the island are not organized and there are no lifeguards on windy days.
Skyros Travel Guide
Skyros Greece is the least touristically developed island of the Sporades island chain. That means it is a heavenly destination for those who love seclusion and relaxation. Having secluded beaches, traditional architecture, and a network of beautiful hiking trails, Skiros boasts a unique beauty. What’s more, thanks to its close distance to the rest of the Sporades islands, Skyros is a good base for island hopping to the nearby Skopelos, Alonissos, and Evia!
Chora, the island’s capital, is arguably one of the most beautiful villages in Skyros. On a hill above Chora sits an imposing Byzantine castle and the monastery of Saint George, one of the most important landmarks of Skyros. Chora is the perfect place to stroll around and enjoy a drink when the sun goes down. What’s more, in Chora you’ll find the most Skyros hotels.
Things to do and see in Skyros island
Skyros is a very green and relaxing island. It is not as touristically developed as other Greek islands and this provides a special vibe of calmness. This scenic island is ideally preserved for nature lovers and in fact, it is the home of a very rare horse breed, the Skyrian horse. There are a couple of farms on the island that host such horses and are surely worth a visit. The most interesting sightseeing in Skyros is the Medieval Castle on the hill above Skyros Town and the Monastery of Saint George found right below the Castle. A stroll around Skyros Town (Chora) is a nice activity day and night.
The island of Skyros, in Greece, is one of the Greek islands of the Aegean Sea and it belongs to the Sporades islands group. The main village of Skyros island is Chora, built on the slopes of a hill overlooking the sea and famous for the Byzantine Castle above. This is a lovely place to stroll around and enjoy a drink in the evenings, in the many cozy bars of the town.
Molos is the most tourist resort in Skyros Greece. This is a large sandy beach lined up with tourist accommodation, restaurants and beach bars. There are many other beautiful beach places on the island, including Atsitsa, Agios Fokas and Pefkos, but with less tourist facilities and ideal for secluded Skyros holidays. Due to the wild landscape, it is also an island great for trekking. Many trekking paths cross the inland leading to places of natural beauty.
The Skyrian pony
They can be found running wild on the central plateau and placidly foraging in farms. The story of their origin is intriguing. One theory is that they are descendants of the breed of horses used by the cavalries in Greece in the 5th century B.C. Your kids will want to ride these exceptionally rare Lilliputian steeds and, with a little luck, they will.
Hora, a living museum
The main town is built on a hill topped by a castle, itself topped by the monastery of Saint George. Walk – there is no other way – around its narrow alleys where the whitewashed houses seamlessly merge with each other, smell the jasmine, peer through open doors and windows at the living-rooms proudly decorated with colourful ceramics and finely carved wooden furniture. You can get a closer look in the Folk Art Museum, which also maintains a shop.
British poet Rupert Brooke died near Skyros during the First World War. Apart from his tomb, he is commemorated with a statue in a square at the north end of town. The view of the Mediterranean is breathtaking. Once there would have been lookouts at places like this to spot pirates. Nowadays, all you’ll see are yachts and fishing-boats sailing the peaceful Aegean Sea.
Round the island in 80 minutes
If you place the bet, you’ll win. It is possible to go round the inhabited part of the island in less than an hour and half. But why rush? Drive from the port towards Magazia, the large and popular sandy beach and then head inland to the forested part of the island. On the west coast you’ll find lovely places to swim, such as Agios Petros, Kyra Panagia, Atsitsa, Agalipa and Agios Fokas, many of which also have terrific tavernas if you get hungry. On the final stretch before hitting the port of Linaria again, it’s worth stopping at the chapel of Agios Panteleimon for the spectacular view of the bay of Pefko and the uninhabited islands to the south.
What to do in Skyros island
The stone mushroom
At the otherworldly seaside site of Pouria is an ancient quarry where you’ll see a weird rock formation, the stone mushroom.
Skyros has been famous for its plentiful lobsters since antiquity. Enjoy!
Full moon at Magazia
The great full moon of August is at its most romantic from here, rising out of the sea. Marvel at it from the coastal pathway above the beach or from one of the seaside tavernas.
Eat & Drink in Skyros
Most places to eat and drink in Skyros are found in Skyros Town, the main town of the island. This is where a lot of restaurants and bars are located, along the narrow streets and at the small squares of the Town. Other restaurants are found at the main villages and beaches of the island, including Linaria, Atsitsa, Pefkos, Molos and Magazia. Few beach bars in Molos and Magazia stay open until late and play lounge music.
Skyros is a serene island without the noisy crowds of other Greek islands, so the nightlife is kept on low paces. You can’t expect vibrant and disco style night outs or wild parties in Skyros, just a few bars to enjoy your night drink. These bars offer a variety of music choices, from Greek to international songs, but still, things are kept quite a lounge.
The nightlife of Skyros is mainly concentrated in the capital town. There are also a few beach bars in the beach resorts of Molos and Magazia that turn into lounge bars in the evenings. Bars in Skyros usually stay open till 2 or 3 o’clock in the morning and offer relaxing moments.
The villages of Skyros have preserved their traditional architecture, with the small whitewashed houses, the flat roofs, and the paved paths. Chora, the capital village, and Linaria, the port, are main villages on the island. Other settlements are found all over the island but they remain secluded all year round.
Beaches of Skyros island
The main cobbled road through town from the lower square to the statue of Rupert Brooke comes alive at night. It is lined with shops selling souvenirs and examples of all that lovely pottery, wood-carving and colourful fabrics, as well as restaurants, cafes and bars which really get going when the shops close.
Beaches in Skyros are known for their crystal waters and the marvelous landscape that surrounds them. The most popular Skyros beaches are Molos and Magazia, which are the closest beaches to the main town. Some Skyros beaches are difficult to access but once you get there, you enjoy total privacy. You will find below a list of the best beaches in Skyros island.
List of All Beaches in Skyros
Where to stay in Skyros island
Skyros Hotels, Skyros is a secluded island in Sporades Greece, considered an alternative destination of the Aegean Sea. Look and search Skyros accommodation, rooms, hotels apartments, studios and pensions.
- Irini studios, Booking.com and Hotelscombined.com
- Avra Studios & Apartments, Booking.com and Hotelscombined.com
- Vina Beach Hotel, Booking.com and Hotelscombined.com
- Hotel Melikari, Booking.com and Hotelscombined.com
- Hydroussa Skyros, Booking.com and Hotelscombined.com
- Meroi Studios, Booking.com and Hotelscombined.com
- Athena’s Houses, Booking.com and Hotelscombined.com
- Maestralia, Booking.com and Hotelscombined.com
- Kallisti Studios & Apartments, Booking.com and Hotelscombined.com