slideroneone 10Alonissos is famous for, and justifiably proud of, its Marine Park and there are a number of boat excursions which will take you out to see the sparkling waters and the marine life that inhabits it. It is not unusual for shoals of dolphins to keep you company; and a Mediterranean Monk Seal (an endangered species) can occasionally be spotted, along with shoals of fish and other marine life. Looking up there is every chance you will see birds of prey – the Eleanora’s Falcon is resident here – swooping around; and very often you will find you are being spied on by a goat or two, perched precariously on the cliff edge.

Trips go to the islands of Pereistera – which is inhabited by just a few people in the summer, to the Monastary (occupied by a solitary monk)  at Kyria Panagia and to the further afield islands of Skantzoura, Yioura and Psathoura. Trips in a glass bottom boat are also available – but as the range of excursions varies from year to year, it is a case of investigating the possibilities once you arrive on the island.

Back on land, there are a couple of low key archaeological sites which are worth visiting, just to say you have been there; but don’t expect the Parthenon or the Necropolis at Knossos, or you will be disappointed. Tsoukalia beach is one of the sites to visit; here you will find the remains of an amphora factory, which contains remnants of pottery dating back to the 4th century BC. A windmill stands here too, in a somewhat neglected state. There are also a few archaeological remains to be found at Kokkinokastro; but really Alonissos is not the island to come to for those seeking archaeological interest.

There are many small churches dotted around the island, such as the little church of Agios Yiorgos which is sited about ten kilometres from Patitiri on the road to Yerakas. There is a small car park here, with stunning views over to the various islands and on a clear day it is a truly magnificent sight. The two small chapels at Agios Anargii are also something to build into your sightseeing itinerary; after a short walk through a pine forest you will find one old Byzantine chapel and its younger neighbour, built to replace the original which was damaged in the earthquake. It has since been restored, but you are unlikely to find it open. The chapels are on a cliff top, with yet more fantastic views over the crystal seas below. There are also several churches in the Old Village; like many of the churches on the island they are only used on their particular name day.

Kalovoulos is a 325 meter peak just on the edge of the Old Village – walking past the Cemetary on your right, follow the road around to the left and you will see a marked path on your right, which leads to the top of the peak. It’s a bit of a climb but well worth it – from the summit it is possible to look back over the Old Village and up the coast beyond to the various islands; and also to Evvia, the Two Brothers and Skopelos. It takes about twenty minutes at a steady pace to get to the top, and it’s worth every step you take!

Just outside the Village, at the top of the main road into town, you will see the threshing circles, which were still in use up to the end of the 1970 (there is also one further up the road, by the cemetary). There is an annual threshing display in July or August, with a re-creation of the threshing and food available (see our events page).

Cars are available to hire to get you around – Olyvia will help you organise this. There are several motorbike/scooter hire places in town, if you prefer to feel the wind in your hair!