Xanthi is a city in Thrace, northeastern Greece. It is the capital of the Xanthi regional unit of the region of East Macedonia and Thrace. Its narrow streets continue to bear the traces of Ottoman architecture. The different ethnic groups (Turks, Bulgarians, Greeks, Armenians, people from Epirus, Halkidiki, Eastern Rumelia, Asia Minor and the Pontus region) lived and worked side-by-side, contributing to the social and cultural melting pot of Xanthi.
The university in Xanthi ensures that the city is always lively. Young people are spread all over the city, so you are likely to find cafes and restaurants everywhere. Especially in the summer, the population of the city is increasing because there are actually very beautiful beaches in the coastal part of Xanthi.
In addition, the Xanthi Carnival, organized like the end of February or the beginning of March, is one of the influential activities for the promotion and developing the tourism of the city. Thousands of visitors attend this carnival every year, and there is an entertainment with a magnificent beauty like the Rio Carnival.
If you thing that where to go in Greece, Xanthi should be your bucket list to visit.
Where is Xanthi
Xanthi is located in the north of Greece and middle of the Thrace region, 220km east of Thessaloniki.
How to get to Xanthi
You have many ways to travel to Xanthi, by flights, bus, train, your own car or renting a car.
Xanthi shares Kavala Airport, 44km southwest, near Hrysoupoli, with coastal Kavala. Also you may take a flight ticket for Thessaloniki, its 220km to Xanthi.
The bus station is 700m south of Kentriki Plateia. Dimokritou (later Karaoli) leads to Kentriki Plateia from the bus station. Buses travel to Komotini (€5, one hour, eight daily), Thessaloniki (€19, 2½ hours, nine daily), Athens (€61, nine hours, one daily) and Alexandroupoli (€8, one hour, eight daily). Buses also serve northern Pomakohoria villages (€3.80, 1½ hours, two daily) and Stavroupoli to the west. Buses (€90) leave daily at 9.30am and 5.30pm for Bulgarian destinations Svilengrad, Harmanli, Haskovo and Plovdiv (Philippopouli in Greek).
Xanthi’s train station connects Alexandroupoli and Komotini with Thessaloniki twice daily.
Rent a car, before you go Xanthi!
It’s the colourful Xanthi Carnival and festive open-air market. There’s a special ambience here and you can’t exactly put your finger on it. But you’ll feel it as soon as you arrive. Welcome to Xanthi.
Every year Xanthi hosts the most brilliant, beautiful and colourful Carnival of Xanthi in northern Greece. All of the city’s cultural communities come together to celebrate and recreate old customs. Although the Carnival has evolved over the years, the combination of modern additions, tradition and folkore is what makes it so special.
Beaches of Xanthi
The beaches of Xanthi are full of splendid coasts to explore: Dasohori, Erasmio, Mangana, Mirodato, Avdera, Ag. Yiannis, Porto Molo, Madra, Porto Lagos. Some are popular, full of nearby cafes and restaurants, while others are more secluded. Travel down the coast to find your favourite spot.
Things to do and see in Xanthi
The stately Old Town of Xanthi
Xanthi Old Town is glamourous and elegant. In the cobblestone streets and grand mansions of the wealthy tobacco merchants, you’ll find traces of a glorious era. Their stately multicolour homes have painted walls, wooden windows and flowering gardens. Inside they’re decorated with tasteful, handmade furniture, stained glass windows and ornately carved doors. Worth a visit are the Town Hall, built in 1830, the Municipal Gallery on Orpheus Street and the Folklore Museum of Xanthi.
Lake Vistonida and Porto Lagos: Where land and water become one
Nature lovers will find their paradise here. From the source of the Nestos River until Abdera, and from there until Porto Lagos and Lake Vistonida, you’ll find a majestic blend of earth and water. The soil here in this corner of Greece is irrigated by the river’s fresh water. This then merges with the salty sea and between the reeds you’ll discover a refuge for rare birds, fish and other animals. Pure and peaceful, this scenery invites you to become one with it.
At Pomakohoria, a cluster of villages
‘Is this even Greece?’ you’ll wonder. At Pomakohoria – a cluster of interesting little villages – the unspoilt landscape has not been altered by surrounding influences, and nor have the people. Many say the locals, with their blond hair and blue eyes, are the descendents of the Agrianes, the army of elite warriors led by Alexander the Great. Today they live in the foothills of the Rhodopi Mountain range, preserving their cultural identity.
What to do in Xanthi
The serpentine Nestos River
The Nestos River cuts across the Rhodopi Mountains, trying to reach the sea, snaking in and out of the mountain range and creating the famous ‘Nestos Straits’. These meanderings result in unique geological formations and are a sight worth seeing by boat.
The birthplace of Democritus
Here you’ll find one of the most important archaeological sites in northern Greece. The first Greeks that settled here in the ancient city of Abdera were from the Ionian city of Teo. The Klazomenes, from Asia Minor, came later in 654 BC and Democritus was born here. Its marvellous small museum will delight you.
The Xanthi bazaar
With a long history, broken only by the centuries of Ottoman rule, the Xanthi bazaar has been a mainstay of residents of the city and an attraction for visitors from all around Greece and abroad. Famed for the diversity of merchandise on display, it is multicultural bazaar, full of colour, sound and hypnotic aromas.
Where to stay in Xanthi
Where to stay in Xanthi? Where is the best hotels to stay in Xanthi Greece? Hotels or Apartments? Adult only? Pet allowed? The best accommodation to stay in Xanthi, in our recommendation.
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