Alonissos is the northernmost inhabited island of the Sporades. Along with the Peristera islets (Kyra Panagia, Gioura, Psathoura, Piperi and Skantoura) it comprises the National Marine Park of Alonnisos of Northern Sporades, which is the largest of its kind in Europe and unique in Greece. It is an exceptional combination of terrestrial and marine habitats of the Mediterranean for hundreds of species of plants and animals and it also includes important archaeological and historical monuments. The spectacular marine ecosystem of the area is comprised of a wide variety of flora and fauna while the best known inhabitant of this ecosystem is the endangered seal Monachus Monachus. The terrestrial ecosystem of the islands is equally interesting. The dense vegetation with pine forests, olive groves and a large variety of Mediterranean plants is in harmony with the rich terrain where slopes alternate with rugged ravines and steep cliffs.
Although the hilly countryside and the marine landscape seem like they have not been touched by human hand, the place actually has a long history. Traces of inhabitation were discovered in Gioura and they date back to the 9th millennium B.C., thus making this island group one of the first inhabited island groups of the Aegean Sea. It is a place of mythical heroes, ancient shipwrecks and sunken ancient cities. Also, over the years, Alonissos has been a region of geopolitical importance which affected the course of history. Mycenaeans, Pelasgians, Athenians, Romans, Franks and Turks successively acquired the sovereignty of the island before it could join the newly established Greek state. There is a large number of monuments to reveal the long history of the place such as a number of shipwrecks of the Classical and Byzantine periods and a large number of churches and monasteries.
Today the picturesque communities of the island largely maintain their traditional character. There has also been a mild tourist development in recent years always in respect to the natural environment and the cultural character of the place. The beautiful beaches are perhaps the most attractive element of the island and not unjustifiably so. In the southern and southeastern coast of Alonnisos you will be amazed by the golden sand beaches or the seaside full of colorful pebbles or even the beaches with the steep reddish cliffs. All of them, however, share a common denominator: Their crystal clear turquoise waters. On the northwest coast there are rocky and only accessible by boat beaches whose rare beauty will captivate you.
In general, Alonissos is an ideal destination for those seeking tranquility and who are in the mood to explore the natural beauty and get to know the local traditions. The perfect combination of warm hospitality and unique landscapes makes this island the ideal holiday environment that will rejuvenate you both physically and mentally.
How to get there:
By ferry running on a regular basis from Volos, Agios Konstantinos or Kimi.
By airplane from the airports of Skiathos, Skyros and South Anchialos at Volos.