The Schizo island
One half of this fascinating island is a lush, lazy, green Sporadic island like the sister islands of Skiathos and Skopelos to the north. Then, something strange happens and the southern end rears up large rocky masses that are as vigorous, barren and dramatic as any Cycladic island. The South shore has limpid, calm waters, the North shore is pounded by the Aegean Meltemi waves.
All aspects though of Skyros are beautiful, and it is famous in Greece for the lovely landscape and rich variety of beautiful beaches.
Skyros town is a picturesque village of twisting lanes and white houses normally found in the Cyclades, but surrounded by olive groves and green hills. Folklore and tradition still play a real role on this island, famous for its pottery and ceramics, embdoidery, painted chests, wooden stools and small tables etc. Tradition is further preserved in the 300 plus churches that stud the island.
Since Roman times, tossed violently between the Byzantines, the Ottomans, Venetians, Barbarossa the pirate and Saracens, Skyros has had a turbulent history – one guide book puts it most delightfully:
“In 1650, Grimani [a Venetian war-lord/businessman,]killed the vast majority of the men on Skyros, and used the remaining men as slaves to row his ships. After that, life on Skyros became more tranquil and better organized”
Take note politicians….
Direct flights from Athens
Wonderful beaches – from dramatic north-facing ones with the open seas crashing on the shore, to sheltered south facing sandy ones, with cool bars and organised sports.
Connecting with other islands.
Those wanting to explore with a book of poetry, get lost in Skyros town, buy pottery plates and bowls, and to feel they have discovered a truly authentic and original island.
Celebrity spotting and sophisticated people looking for international glamour.
Perched on the “Rock of Theseus”, the beautiful island capital of Chora has picturesque narrow streets, two museums, an imposing Venetian castle, byzantine churches, workshops of local art, shops and public services, restaurants, and bars.
The Aris Plateau , home to the unique race of Skyros’ horses that have survived since ancient times.
Palamari - The most remarkable archaeological site at Skyros in the northern part of the island. Many of the findings are exhibited in the Archaeological Museum of Skyros, but you can visit the site too, open every day from 9.00 to 14.00.
The Grave of the English war poet Rupert Brooke(1887-1925) - “If I should die, think only this of me/ that there’s some corner of a foreign field/ that is forever England”. Tris Boukes, in the deserted south east of Skyros is a mountainous region only visited by a few locals and hikers, and is a beautiful, atmospheric and moving site for Brooke’s grave.
Nifi Springs - In Achilli bay; cold waters gush from the natural spring of “Nifi”, named after the nymphs that are believed to have lived there in the ancient times
The Historical and Folklore Museum (Tel. 22220 92158) with a really beautiful and rich collection of local decorative arts.
Castro in Chora with its Venetian and Byzantine remains.
Shopping in Chora for pottery,embroidery, ceramics, beautifully hand-carved stools, hand-woven materials, rugs, original clay and copper utensils, chests and furniture
Wind and kit surfing in Kalamitsa Beach
Catch the local races at te Skyros Municipal race track where the local ponies can be ridden.
Cool beach bars on Molos beach