Halkidiki / Kassandra


Aug 22, 2020

Halkidiki is the weekend gateway in summer for people living in the area of Thessaloniki. Getting away from the heat in the city and spending your days swimming in the clear blue waters at one of the many stunning beaches. Just 1.5 hour drive from the city or the airport of Thessaloniki makes this destination easy to travel to for a few days or for a full two weeks holiday. The 3 peninsulas of Halkidiki feature Mediterranean forests that give way to sandy beaches in sheltered bays.

We started our trip by exploring the westernmost peninsula called Kassandra, this is probably the most developed peninsula but we still managed to find a lot of beautiful hidden places which where not discovered yet by mass tourism. The region is also notable by it’s archaeological sites include Stageira, Aristotle’s birthplace, and Olynthus, known for its well-preserved mosaic floors.

We were most surprised by the stunning nature. While driving around the peninsula (we definitely recommend you to hire a car) you have a view over the beautiful green hills, which are covered with olive trees, pine trees and other green plants and flowers. Almost everywhere from the main road you can take a left or a right towards one of the smaller, often sandy, roads which will leeds you to a stunning beach hidden behind a wall of trees. Accompanied by the music of the crickets, tzitzikia in Greek, this area will give you the ultimate summer feeling.


Beaches & beach bars

When you’re visiting the charming village of Afytos make sure to go for a swim at the lovely small sandy beach. There are plenty of different beach bars to choose from for some coffee and small bites.

Another great spot we loved is Agora beach. Which is located around the middle of he eastern side of Kassandra, it’s a nice sandy beach with a beautiful bay. The beach has great sun beds and umbrella’s for a reasonable fee. Drinks and snacks organized by Agora beach bar.

Mamalouka beach bar has a great decor and has all comforts you need. It’s a bit more a ‘people watching’ place but you can definitely spend a nice day over there.

Umbrellas beach bar has a bit of the same vibe, but is a bit more quiet. The sand is a bit less golden but the decor is great. Umbrella’s and sun beds cost a reasonable fee.

Xenia Golden beach and Paliouri beach are two large sandy beaches almost next to each other with different beach bars situated on the beach. From high end to a cantina at the beach.

A personal favorite of us was Navagos beach bar, a pretty beach bar located in a more quiet area and with a relaxed atmosphere. We would recommend you to stay for dinner, the seafood is amazing!

The western side of the peninsula has also beautiful beaches. The drive along the western coastline itself is very beautiful and it almost has a Caribbean feel to it. Make sure to drive all the way to the upper left corner where the lighthouse is located and Possidi Cape. A beautiful (unorganized) beach which feels like paradise. Nature’s finest!

Next to it is Possidi west beach, which has some relaxed no-nonsense beach bars.


Restaurants & Bars

Best view at Villa Stasa sea bar, go for your first freddo cappuccino in the morning or a cocktail at sunset.

Another one with a great view, the terrace of the Kappa Resort restaurant is situated at the east side of Kassandra and from there you have a nice view over the western side of the second peninsula.

Porta Valitsa offers an amazing view over the rocky coastline and the beautiful blue
water.

This one is also mentioned above at the summary of beaches but we will mention it here as well, so you will definitely go, because the restaurant of Agora Beach bar is everything you are looking for. Absolutely great seafood selection, a beautiful view over the beach and sea, nice decor and relaxed atmosphere. Have a break from the beach with a seafood lunch or stay for dinner after your day at the beach.

Beach bar and restaurant Mamalouka is located in Pefkochori. It’s a picture perfect place with a great looking seafood based restaurant overlooking the beach. As mentioned above, spend a day at their sun beds on the beach and have a long lunch (we would recommend the fruit salad) at the restaurant or go at night for a lovely dinner.

Taverna La Lobster, not a traditional taverna but this works if you’re looking for a more modern place with a slightly different take on the traditional Greek kitchen.

Taverna Sidera is located in the small village of Possidi, just good seafood in a traditional atmosphere overlooking the sea.

Last but not least, have a (great) dinner at Navagos beachbar and restaurant.


Places to visit

Tzika’s family winery, we loved their Chardonnay and orange wine. Vineyards spread around Halkidiki, and naturally produced. For 10 euro you can do a tasting of different wines.

Nea Fokea is a small fishing village with a charming port and the village is most known for the Sant Paul’s Byzantine Tower which is a historical highlight from where you have an amazing view.

The charming village of Afytos is very nice to visit. Spend a day at the small but cute beach, have some mezedes at Sparos Meze and end the day with a stroll and a drink in the centre of the village.


Places to stay

Ihouse looks like a dream. These very well-appointed 34m2 cabins are innovative, beautiful, minimalistic looking and located right on in front of the beach. Watch the sunrise from your bed and go for a morning swim just by walking a few meters from your doorstep. The ultimate relaxed atmosphere!

Casa luxury suites is located just outside the village of Paliouri and very close to Paliouri beach. It’s a nice looking, modern decorated place surrounded by olive trees and other Mediterranean scrub. Every studio apartment has a balcony or terrace, and there is a communal swimming pool with sun beds and chair. It’s a very relaxing place, with in the background the sound of the crickets.

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