Sithonia, You Have to Visit HereOct 9th, 2012 | By Peter Minakis | Category: Beaches, Culinary Tour of Greece, Featured, Halkidiki, Travel
This past summer I took a day trip to the middle finger or peninsula of Halkidiki, known to Greeks as Sithonia. Halkidiki comprises of three peninsulas, it’s located just east of Thessaloniki with the nearest being the peninsula of Kassandra and the most distant being Agio Oros. To visit Halkidiki one gets the feel of the islands despite the three peninsulas being part of Greece’s mainland.
There’s always been a debate among northern Greeks as to which peninsula is prettier, which has the best beaches, etc. Much like all of Greece, all of Halkidiki is pretty and there is something for everybody. What you will definitely see are some of Greece’s most beautiful beaches and that’s our first stop, Vourvourou beach.
This beach is rather shallow (lots of room for kids to safely swim) before the waters open up and deepen. The approach to this beach is surprising as it’s hidden in winding dirt roads, coniferous trees and lots of park cars. You finally descend a small slope and you arrive at this striking beach with many other beach goers but there’s plenty of space to lay with some privacy or set your belongings under the shade of a tree and simply descend down to the waters.
Vourvourou does not have any restaurants or tavernas but many snack shacks offering refreshments, beer, coffee, sandwiches. If fast isn’t your cup o’ tea you can always pack a cooler and go picnic mode. We did neither and after our swim we hopped back in our car and traveled further south for another swim just 20 minutes south in Sarti.
The beach of Sarti is more organized with many tavernas, restaurants along the beach with a promenade built for those wishing to take a walk seaside with a gorgeous view of Mount Athos across the body of water separating the two peninsulas. The water here deepens after about 10 metres, there’s more waves/tide pull so extra care should be exercised when traveling with children.
Sarti’s waters are gorgeous and worth a trip just to swim with beautiful Mount Athos as the backdrop. Keep in mind that Sithonia has lots of beaches that dot the coastline and if your grow restless, hop in the car and try out another beach nearby! We decided to stay as a whole day’s worth of swimming works-up an appetite.
One of the best eating experiences in Greece is to eat fish & seafood by the sea - it’s one of my favourite experiences and one I never grow weary of. We settled in at a taverna called “Noah’s Ark”. If the kitschy name is not to your liking, Sarti boasts of several fish/seafood tavernas that hug along the bay.
House cut fried potatoes, fried in olive oil. Have you had olive oil fried French Fries?
Other points of interest in Sithonia:
* Halkidki produces the most honey in Greece and it’s very good honey. You will see lots of honey stands along the roads, try some and buy a jar or two.
* The local wine is very good (both red and white), namely the nearby Porto Carras winery
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