Whether you’re a beach bum or a nature lover, Halkidiki holidays spoil you with the best of the great outdoors.
From up above, Halkidiki looks like a giant letter M. Each leg has its own personality, too. As you shift from left to right, you’ll see less and less of a human footprint. The Kassandra peninsula’s flush with modern hotels and beach resorts with all the bells and whistles, while neighbouring Sithonia and Mount Athos go make-up free.
Best for beaches
Kassandra’s the first name on people’s lips when you’re talking sunbathing on the shores of the Aegean Sea. It’s the left-sided spike of Halkidiki’s trident-like layout, and delivers inviting white-sand beaches like Nea Moudania. When you’re not evening out your tan lines, the region’s watersports game is strong, and there are natural wonders like the Petralona Cave to tick off.
Life in the fast lane’s alien to the locals on Sithonia and Mount Athos. The former of the two’s flecked with authentic Greek fishing villages and pine forests, and the coastline’s peppered with easy-to-miss secluded coves. As holiday destinations go, Mount Athos is a rare beast. Once you reach the quaint village of Ouranoupolis, it’s impossible to get any closer to the holy mountain without special permission. Boat trips whisk you past the peak from a distance, but three quarters of the monastery-punched landscape’s off limits to average Joes.
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Nea Moudania is perched at the top of Halkidiki’s first peninsula. It’s the region’s second city, but it’s still got that laidback village vibe. That said, you can expect all the tell-tale city signs, from coffee shops and supermarkets to museums and an attention-seeking church. And it throws a belter of a beach into the ring, as well.
You’ll find Ouranoupolis at the top of one of Halkidiki’s dangling fingers. Its remote, forest-hidden setting means the dinky village’s still in touch with its traditional roots. It’s not totally cut-off, though – tavernas and shops have popped up to look after the tourists that come here to see the holy Mount Athos.
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