The traveler must visit the Old Village (Chora) which has been characterized as a traditional settlement. Being built on an altitude of about 200m, this village was the place where locals sought refuge from pirates. The outer wall of the first houses that were built on the eastern and the southern side of the village formed a fortified perimeter, which offered some kind of protection, while the very steep hill slopes from the western and northern side made access extremely difficult. The houses inside this “castle” were built very close to one another due to lack of free space. As time passed by and due to the increase of population, houses were being built outside the “castle”, making the village as it is today.
Apart from the Old Village, one must visit as many beaches as one can. The variety of beaches will satisfy all tastes. There are beaches with sand, small or large size pebbles, with umbrellas for hire, with nearby restaurants and cafeterias and beaches which are not touched by civilization. Some of the most popular are Agios Demetrios, Leftos Gialos, Milia, Chrysi Milia, Kokkinokastro, Tsoukalia and Megalos Mourtias. You will be the one to decide which one fits you the best.
Apart from the Old Village, one must visit as many beaches as one can. The variety of beaches will satisfy all tastes. There are beaches with sand, small or large size pebbles, with umbrellas for hire, with nearby restaurants and cafeterias and beaches which are not touched by civilization. Some of the most popular are Agios Demetrios, Leftos Gialos, Milia, Xrysi Milia, Kokkinokastro, Tsoukalia and Megalos Mourtias. You will be the one who will decide which one fits you the best.
National Marine Park of Alonissos / Northern Sporades
The National Marine Park of Alonnisos / Northern Sporades was founded in 1992. It was the first of its kind in Greece and is currently the largest marine protected area in Europe. It covers an area of 2.265 km2. Besides the sea area, the park includes the island of Alonissos, six smaller islands (Peristera, Kyra Panagia, Gioura, Psathoura. Piperi and Skantzoura), as well as 22 uninhabited islets. It is located in the northern Aegean Sea.
The main purpose of the park is to protect the monk seal (monachus monachus) and its natural habitat. Apart from the monk seal, the red coral (Coralium rubrum), Eleonora’s Falcon (Falco eleonorae), Audouin’s Gull (Larus audouinii), Shag (Phalacrocorax aristotelis), and the wild goat of Gioura (Capra aegagrus), are few of the most characteristic rare species to be found. Some of the birds to be seen are the eagle (Hieraetus fasciatus), the cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo) and the white gull (Larus cacchinans), and, nesting among the rocks, the Apus capus and Apus melba, the Rock Nuthatch (Sitta neumayeri) etc. The existing flora also favors the presence of species of the family Sylvie, e.g. the Sardinian Warbler (Sylvia melanocephala) and the Blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla). Underwater fauna is also varied, with many benthic and fish species. Various species of dolphins and some whale species may be seen in the region, such as the common dolphin (Delphinus delphis), the striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba), the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), the long-finned pilot whale (Globicephala melas), the sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus) and the cuvier’s beaked whale (Ziphius cavirostris).
The Marine Park consists of two zones, A and B. Zone A covers an area of 1587 km2 and is divided in two subzones. Zone A1 covers Piperi Island and the surrounding waters to a distance of 3 nautical miles. In Zone A1, activities such as agricultural activities, the use of fire or chemicals, all kinds of professional fishing, amateur fishing, vessel approach and mooring are forbidden. Zone A2 covers the total surface of the Psathoura Island.
Zone B covers an area of 678 km². The entire area of Zone B is open to visits and there are no specific restrictions, with the exception of free camping and the lighting of fires. Swimming and walking are amongst the simplest and most interesting ways of coming in contact with the natural environment. In addition, amateur fishing is allowed according to the rules laid down in the Fisheries Code.