Ultimate Travel Guide to Skiathos

Explore our complete travel guide to Skiathos, featuring where to head for brunch, lunch, dinner, and swimming on this charming island. 

Skiathos, known for its lush landscapes, gorgeous beaches, and vibrant night scene, is an idyllic destination for every type of traveller. 

See + Do

Visit the Papadiamantis House Museum– Immerse yourself in the life and works of Alexandros Papadiamantis, one of Greece’s best-known authors, whose former home in the heart of Skiathos is now a museum.

Explore the Bourtzi Fortress– This small peninsula in Skiathos Town offers breathtaking views, a charming café, and historical significance.

Discover well-hidden beaches– Skiathos is famous worldwide for its stunning beaches, each offering unique beauty and atmosphere.

Stroll Through Skiathos Town– Wander through narrow streets lined with whitewashed houses, quaint shops, and cozy cafés, soaking in the island’s charm.

Discover Skiathos Cuisine- Try local fresh seafood, meze, and traditional Greek dishes on the island’s many tavernas.

Monastery of Evangelistris- This historic monastery provides insights into Skiathos’ religious heritage and offers stunning views of the island.

Eat & Drink

Coffee + Brunch

Naval Cafe- This small café stands out for its great brunch menu featuring shakshuka, avocado toast, and cream-filled croissants served with specialty coffee.

Ιl Posto- Enjoy a cozy and elegant atmosphere where you can savour fresh bagels, fluffy pancakes, and freshly squeezed juices.

Pecan- Τhis ultimate all-day bar is located by the port and it’s a perfect spot for a casual morning bite.


Taverna Akrogiali– Enjoy fresh seafood right next to the sea. 

Bourtzi Skiathos- Perfect place for a long, lazy lunch that includes seafood giouvetsi and veal ragu.

Bakaliko Restaurant- Located in Skiathos Town, this taverna offers authentic Greek dishes in a charming setting.

Under the Pine Tree- Situated in Koukounaries, this hidden restaurant serves traditional Greek cuisine under shaded trees.


La Cusina di Maria- This Italian restaurant located in a picturesque alley offers a unique dining experience with a focus on fresh, local ingredients and a curated wine list.

Marmita- Serves traditional dishes with a modern twist.

Panorama Restaurant & Pizza- Offers a delightful culinary experience, blending traditional flavors with contemporary techniques. 


Alaska- For the best ice cream on the island, as well as freshly baked waffles.

Gelateria- Serves a variety of handmade gelato and pastries.

Dafni’s Sweets- Τhis cosy café is an excellent choice to enjoy traditional sweets like loukoumades during your evening walk.


Barbouni Bar- The ideal destination for tasty cocktails and a vibrant atmosphere.

Anderssons Bar- A great spot to enjoy some evening cocktails.

Kirki- For signature cocktails and great music.

Rock ‘n’ Roll Bar- One of the island’s most famous bars on the old port, you’ll enjoy the vibrant music and perfect panoramic views here.

Ginfish- One of the newer bars at Skiathos Port, here you’ll find the cool crowd sipping on their gin. 

Local Flavours

Make sure to try local flavours and traditional dishes such as the walnut liqueur, quince paste, organic honey, and Malagouzia wine. 


Best Beaches

Koukounaries Beach- One of the islands’ most famous beaches, perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and enjoying beachside tavernas.

Lalaria Beach- Known for its stunning white pebbles and crystal-clear waters, it’s accessible by boat. 

Banana Beach- A chic and vibrant beach with sunbeds, umbrellas, and excellent beachside service.

Mandraki Beach- A hidden gem with serene waters and beautiful scenery, ideal for relaxation.

Vromolimnos Beach: Peaceful beach that also offers water sports.

Agia Eleni Beach- A secluded bay surrounded by cliffs, it’s a peaceful spot that boasts turquoise waters.

Ultimate Daytrip

Kastro- Explore the historic ruins of Kastro, the old, fortified capital of Skiathos, on a cliff offering breathtaking sea views.  

Tsougria Island- Make a short boat trip to this uninhabited island and dive into stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and a serene escape from the bustling main island.

Make Sure You Take Home…

Olive Oil- A staple of Greek cuisine.  

Locally Produced Honey- Often infused with thyme or pine.  

Handcrafted Pottery and Ceramics- Reflecting the rich artistic heritage of Skiathos

Where to Stay

We recommend staying in Skiathos Town to enjoy the picturesque streets, bustling markets, and vibrant nightlife. This central location allows easy access to the island’s top attractions and beaches.

Where to Sleep

Elivi Skiathis- Surrounded by a pine-tree forest overlooking Koukounaries Beach, this 5-star hotel features contemporary artwork, neutral hues and a showpiece sea-view lobby. 

Kassandra Bay Resort- This luxurious seaside resort boasts beautiful views, exquisite dining, and top-notch amenities.

Aegean Suites Hotel- This adults-only hotel offers a tranquil escape with spacious suites, a beautiful pool area, and personalized services.


Best Time to Go: Early June to late September, when the weather is great and it’s not overly crowded.

Ideal Time to Stay: 3-4 days is the ideal time to experience Skiathos.

Getting Around: On foot for the town area and renting a car or scooter for exploring the rest of the island.

Getting There

By Plane: Skiathos Island National Airport (JSI) offers both domestic and international flights. Check with airlines for direct flights or connecting flights via Athens or other major European hubs. 

By Ferry: Ferries connect the mainland of Greece with Skiathos. You can take a ferry from the ports of Volos, Agios Konstantinos, or Thessaloniki. The ferry ride takes around 2-3 hours. 

Main Image by Elivi Skiathos

A Guide to Romantic Skiathos

Sporades Islands became increasingly popular right after the release of ‘Mamma Mia!’. You see, the fictional Greek island of Kalokairi with the turquoise waters and the bleached-white beaches that viewers fall for is nothing else than a curated concoction of scenes from Skopelos island and from Damouchari beach in Pelion.

But while Skopelos is the centre of the action, the visitability of the neighbouring island of Skiathos increased as well, all the more so because it lies just half an hour away and tourists can kill two birds with one stone by visiting both of them even within the same day.

Skiathos is a romance-infused destination mirrored in the number of weddings and honeymoons that take place here culminating in August each year. The island combines everything newlyweds are looking for in a honeymoon: secluded beaches, luxury hotels, fine dining and lots of romantic spots to enjoy the sunset. It is quite possibly the ultimate couple’s destination without breaking the bank!

Here’s our guide for a romantic getaway to Skiathos!

Welcome drinks at Bourtzi

Start married life and set the tone of your visit to Skiathos with a few drinks at Bourtzi. Bourtzi is an old fortress set on a small peninsula that extends into the sea between the old and new port of Skiathos Town. It was built in the 13th century and has since saved the island many times against its enemies and pirates’ attacks. Nowadays, Bourtzi hosts one of the best bars in town. It has great cocktails and nibbles to eat and it also offers the best airplane spotting and sea views. Don’t forget to take a selfie in the toilet mirrors (hint: there are no mirrors just endless sea views, something visitors adore about this place!).

Agios Nikolaos Church and Clock Tower

Getting to Agios Nikolaos Church just before sunset is one of the best things to do when in Skiathos. To get there you climb around 100 steps through century-old alleyways, past jasmine-filled gardens and the occasional stone-built bar that has bougainvillea-covered walls. It is all worth it though as once you are on top you have the best panoramic views of the town, new and old port.

Romantic dinner at Scuna restaurant

Scuna is the place to go for a romantic dinner by the seaside. We visited on our second night on the island, after a long tour around the beaches on the north side of Skiathos. We were ravenous and eager to find a quiet spot for dinner and this place did not disappoint! The food was exceptional, there was a chef’s touch in every dish and the whole restaurant vibe was full of Greek aromas with dried oregano bouquets hanging from the ceiling and Greek wine bottles on display.

Visit Skiathos Kastro

Not everyone wants to relax on a sun lounger for their honeymoon. Why not do something different and visit one of the oldest and most historical sites on the island, instead? The Kastro (castle) of Skiathos are the ruins of a medieval fortified site on a rocky setting lying on the northern side of the island. It was founded in the 14th century and its main purpose was to save the locals from pirate raids. From the day it was built, it was occupied by Venetian and Turkish rulers before it was given back to the Greek people in the 19th century.

Unfortunately, Kastro has been abandoned and left to its own fate for many centuries and as a result, nowadays only two churches have been saved (Gennisi tou Christou and Agios Nikolaos).

A visit is well worth it, any time of the day as you get the best views of the sea waves crashing on the rocks and the vastness of the Aegean Sea.

Walk around the port

Skiathos has a long port that is divided into three different areas: there is the old port, the Municipal Port and the Paraliakos port with the best views of Chora!

Explore the old port, which is located right next to Bourtzi, and have a few drinks at the local bars while watching the travellers chatting to the organisers of the island hopping day trips. Here, is also the place to book your tickets and take a boat to go to Lalaria beach is accessible only by sea.

The Municipal Port is basically the main port and the one you see when arriving on the island from the Greek mainland. This is the base for the lifeguard and also where the majority of the island’s restaurants are located. All ferries depart from here and this is where ferries to Skopelos depart from.

Last but not least, is the Paraliakos Port which is basically a stretch of the Municipal Port. As it is on a curve, it offers fantastic views of the main port and Chora.

Papadiamanti street

Papadiamantis Alexandros was an influential poet and Skiathos native. His work tells the story of people in 19th-century rural and urban Greece with adventures set around the Mediterranean and rich plots involving captivity, war, pirates and diseases.

His house (turned into a museum) is on the main cobbled street of the island, which locals in his honour have now named after him. Being the Highstreet of the island there is a good selection of clothing stores, bars and souvenir places to explore. On a night out, the street is so crowded, that you will potentially stumble upon people over and over again so it’s best to visit during daylight.

The island beaches

Just like any other Greek island, Skiathos has plentiful stunning beaches to visit but there’s no doubt that the most beautiful ones are on the northern side of the island. Somehow, these are the less-visited ones, too, making them ideal to visit if you prefer something quieter and less touristy.

Renting a motorbike is something that I highly recommend before you go on a beach exploration pilgrimage as some beaches are difficult to get to by public transportation or even a car.

Even though the most famous beach on the island is Koukounaries, closely followed by Lalaria beach, we opted for the less-visited ones like the magnificent Troulos, Kanapitsa and Krifi Ammos. Try having breakfast at Troulos beach with the pair of swans greeting tourists every morning as they swim in the sea, a truly unforgettable experience!

Iera Moni Evangelismou tis Theokotou

This monastery is a must-see when visiting Skiathos. The impeccable views of nature and tranquillity of the place will make you feel relaxed and content regardless of your religious beliefs. Try visiting in the afternoon when there are not so many visitors and enjoy the company of the monastery cats giving you a tour of the place!

Shopping in Skiathos

Skiathos has plenty of seasonal, summer stores that sell anything from hand-knitted scarves to white linen dresses and handmade olive soaps. Allow yourself to get lost in the cobbled streets and have a look around the shops. Don’t forget to say ‘hi’ to the locals, they are always up for a chat.

 Skiathos nightlife

Any antonym of the word ‘boring’ would describe Skiathos nightlife! There are nightclubs, bars, beach bars and late-night tavernas scattered all over the place offering the best in music, entertainment and cocktails. If you are indecisive just go for a walk through the old port, pick up a place with the comfiest seats and order a drink! The views of the port, attentive staff and sea breeze will make you fall for it.

Some extra tips:

-Book your accommodation as early as possible. Unlike the other Sporades, Skiathos Island had only one town, Chora, with not so many places to stay on the rest of the island.

-Rent a motorbike, the best way to explore the island and get the best experience.

-If you are staying for more than a week, then consider a day trip to Skopelos with the ferry boat. It’s a short ride and totally worth it.

Have you ever been to Skiathos?

Images By Anastasia Fountouli ©

Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos

Skiathos is nothing short of breathtaking. Known as one of the most popular of the Sporadic islands, it is filled with lush pine trees and over 60 stunning beaches; making it a hot destination during the warmer months. Here are the Top 10 things to do in Skiathos, including visiting modern museums, eating at quaint tavernas, and swimming at serene spots loved by locals. 

Hike Around  

Hike from town to the Evangelistria Monastery or the Kastro, the ancient fortified capital of the island. Skiathos is one of the best organised hiking destinations in Greece, offering 26 hiking routes with a total length of 200 km.  

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos
Evagelistria Monastery

Enjoy Cultural Events

Skiathos is a great place for culture lovers. Here you can enjoy a film at the open-air cinema, visit the small Maritime and Cultural Museum, and an in-house museum, which is dedicated to celebrated author Alexandros Papadiamantis. For a more modern cultural experience head to the Kivo Art Gallery, The Blue House Art Gallery, and Skiathitiko Spiti. 

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos
Kivo Art Gallery

Visit Agios Nikolaos Church and Clock Tower 

The church is dedicated to the Agios Nikolaos, Patron Saint of the sea. Located on a high hill at the beginning of the harbour, it’s totally worth getting up here to enjoy panoramic views of the city, the sea, and the Tsougria Islet on the opposite side. 

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos
Agios Nikolaos Church & Bell Tower

Stroll Around Town 

Keep walking around the town and you’ll eventually reach Plakes, and if you stroll through the streets of the old town, here you will find magical views and some lovely cafes and taverns run by locals. The backstreets of Plakes are filled with white washed homes that feature plenty of charm. 

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos

Explore Bourtzi 

The stretch of harbour leading to the Bourtzi is where you will find the New Harbour and  the town’s marina. It’s lined with an array of cafes and eateries which continue around the corner to the Old Port, whereas the far end near Bourtzi is pedestrianised. When the sun sets, this is where you will find local and international visitors enjoying their evening. 

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos
Bourtzi Castle

Shop Local Products 

Papadiamantis is a wide pedestrianised street in the heart of the Old Town and the main shopping strip of Skiathos Town. Here you’ll find creperies, souvenir shops, boutiques local jewellers and other artisans. Also, make sure to stop off at Ergon deli, where you an grab some great local delicacies to take home. 

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos
Shopping in pretty alleyways

Dine in Style 

There are plenty of dining options in Skiathos and some of our picks include Under the Pine Tree behind Koukounaries, Marmita in Skiathos Town, or Agnadio, on the road towards the Evangelistria Monastery. For traditional taverna dishes head to Alexandros or Amfiliki. For a unique dining experience try the Windmill Restaurant and for modern cuisine head to Borzoi ClubLo&La, Infinity Blue, or The Final Step.

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos
Borzoi Club

Drink With the Locals 

For a glass of wine or a cocktail, head to Rock n Roll, La Bussola, Gin Fish, or Tesla. For an all-day cafe and bar try Bourtzi, perched atop of the island. For the most charming setting, head to Sklithri and book one of the taverna tables right on the beach, and have a light mezze with your drink of choice. 

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos
Tesla Cocktail Bar

Swim at the best beaches 

Some of the best beaches are only accessible by boat however they are easy to get there with boat trips that go around the island every day. We recommend Koukounaries Beach, backed by lush pine forest and Vromolimnos beach is another beautiful sandy beach with a lively beach bar and a water sports centre. Those in the north of the island head to Elia beach, with its crystal-clear sea and rustic-chic tavern.  And don’t miss a swim at Lake Strofinias, Kechries, and Tsoungria (a small isle close by). 

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos
Koukouniares Beach

Lalaria Beach 

Yes, this beach deserves a mention of its own. Lalaria Beach is famous for its cave and its impressive rock formations and is accessible only by boat from Skiathos town; if you can only get to one beach on the island, this is the one. 

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos
Lalaria Beach

Where to Stay 

If you’re looking for some boutique hotels check out La Piscine Art Hotel or Elivi Skiathos. For a nice hotel that is reasonably priced look at Skiathos Avaton and for some villa-style accommodation head to Atrium Hotel

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos
La Piscine Hotel

Getting there

By Plane: Skiathos International Airport is to the east of the island, 30 minutes away by car. By Boat: There is no ferry to Skiathos from Athens. Ferry routes from port towns in mainland Greece such as Agios Konstantinos (two hours from Athens), Thessaloniki, and Volos connect with Skiathos and the neighbouring Northern Sporades islands. 

Insights Greece - Top 10 Best Things to Do in Skiathos