Emerald waters, endless beaches and an infinite coastline with pine trees that reach the sea
Imagine a world of emerald and turquoise-coloured waters, heavenly beaches, exceptional nature, beach bars, seaside resorts family holidays and vibrant nightlife. Now add to that dozens of Blue Flag-awarded beaches and welcome to exotic Halkidiki… a gift of 550km of coastline studded with beautiful beaches! So where do we start?
In the west
Nea Herakleia and Nea Kallikratia are both very popular, big beaches with white sand, found on the western coast of Halkidiki (as you travel due south from Thessaloniki). They are fully-organised and perfect for families, while traditional little tavernas in the area serve delicious meze and Greek cuisine. Continuing further along, you’ll encounter Nea Plagia, Flogita, Dionysiou Beach and Agios Mamas. Some are a little more and some a little less lively, but all are fully-organised, offering dozens of options for sea sports enthusiasts, as well as for those looking for more privacy and tranquillity in the little bays with the crystal-clear waters hidden between them.
Impressive and very long beaches with turquoise waters, fully-organised with beach bars and water sports are found along the coastline of Kassandra (the first of Halkidiki’s three peninsula fingers’. From Sani, Fourka, Possidi, Paliouri and Kallithea, to Pefkohori, Polychrono, Hanioti, and Kriopigi… it’s an area that will enchant you. Endless hours at the beach, family-friendly facilities as well as a cosmopolitan atmosphere, surrounded by lush, green nature that highlights the turquoise waters. Explorers big and small can also discover quieter beaches, such as Mola Kaliva, Nea Skioni, Glarokavos.
The coves at Kavourotripes and Karidi, with their emerald waters and powdery white sand, will steal your heart. As will famous Kalogria, the pine-studded bay of Koviou Beach, Paradisos Beach, and fully-organised Nikiti that spans kilometres. Sarti is a magnet for surfers, or perhaps you’ll prefer the beautiful beaches of Porto Carras, Spathies, Elia, Kalamitsi, and Agios Ioannis. You’ll swim under the archaeological site of Toroni and in Porto Koufo, under the ancient port of Toroneos, where you’ll be thrilled by the scenery: the two protective arms of the cliffs embrace the port, leaving an opening of about 300 metres.
In Sithonia (Halklidiki’s second finger), the large camping sites with their spectacular beaches – Armenistis, Koutloumousiou Beach, Kalamitsi – are all institutions. As are the beach bars where you’ll experience some of the best moments of your holidays, drinking shots and cocktails, dancing barefoot in the sand until nightfall. Sithonia is also an ideal family holiday destination, offering thousands of options for accommodation, food and fun – it’s a child’s paradise all day long. Hidden between the more popular beaches, there are gems like Aretes, Mikri Elia, Azapiko, Abelos, Diaporti with the islet of Pounta – that will become your treasured little secrets.
A view of Mount Athos
Ouranoupoli, the gateway to the monasteries of Mount Athos, with its impressive tower and long, organised coastline, and the islets of Ammouliani and Drenia with their emerald waters, steal the show on the northwestern side of Halkidiki. The beaches in Kambos, Ierissos, Pyrgos, Develiki, Kastri, Vina, Xiropotamo, Tripiti will prove that even the less popular side of Halkidiki has a unique beauty. The beaches of Pisina and Sykia will give you the chance to swim with a view of Ancient Stagira, where the Greek philosopher Aristotle was said to be born in 384 BC.