Hear about travel to Volos, Greece, and the Pelion Peninsula as the Amateur Traveler talks to Heather Cowper from HeatherOnHerTravels.com about her recent visit to this picturesque part of Greece.
Heather says, “I think mainland Greece is really underrated. For travelers, a lot of people go to Athens, of course, amazing cultural sites there. And then they tend to go to the islands where you have beautiful beaches in the summer relaxation. But. The Pelion offers a little bit of everything that’s wonderful about Greece, all in one place. It’s a very authentic place. It’s a place that the Greeks tend to go to, but it’s not widely visited by perhaps the UK or the US, so you’ll get a more authentic experience there.”
“And the wonderful thing about it is that you get this variety. Because it’s a peninsula, you have two coasts. One is facing the Pagasetic Gulf, which is an inland body of water with beautiful little fishing villages. On the other side, you have amazing beaches and rocky coves. You also have a mountainous ridge that runs down the middle. You get little mountain villages, where you can sit, and you can be a bit cooler, and you can be in a shady spot overlooking the sea. So you get the kind of Northern mountain Greece and the beachy Greece, all in one place.”
Heather starts us in the city of Volos, which is on the Pagasetic Gulf. It is a flat city where you can cycle along the seafront. There are a few good museums like the Archeological Museum and the Tsalapatas Museum, which is an old brickworks. You can also get out to the Dimini Archaeological site which is the ruins of a Neolithic village founded somewhere in 4500-4800 B.C.
Then it is time to explore the Pelion Peninsula. Heather suggests two day trips from Volos. The first is a drive to the village of Makrinitsa, which is the “balcony of Mt. Pelion.” It has a great view of Volos. You can hike from there to nearby Portaria along the “Centaurs’ Path”. The second day trip is the narrow gauge Pelion Train up into the mountains.
For the remainder of your week, Heather suggests splitting your time between the fishing villages of the west and the beaches and rocky coves of the east. They stayed first in Afissos. From there, they explored the mountain villages and also took a ferry over to Trikeri.
On the east coast, the scenery may look familiar to fans of the movie Mamma Mia. This is where much of the movie’s outdoor scenes were filmed.
After exploring the Pelion Peninsula, if you have more time, you can take a side trip to the island of Skopelos where you will find more Mamma Mia scenery, ancient graves known as the Pirate Graves on the island of “Green and Blue.”
Explore Athens, sure, but then head to a less well-known part of Greece. Find things to do in Volos, Greece, and the Pelion Peninsula.
right click here to download (mp3)
Heather on Her Travels
A guide to the Pelion Greece – from the mountains to the sea
24 Fun things to do in Volos Greece
Byzantine Museum of Makrinitsa
Centaurs Path (Portaria)
The Pelion Train
Agios Ioannis Beach
Ski resort Agriolefkes
Mamma Mia film locations in Greece – Skopelos, Skiathos, Pelion
Tours in the Pelion Peninsula
Skopelos Greece – a guide to the Mamma Mia island
Church of Agios Ioannis Kastri in Skopelos, Greece
Pirate Graves in Skopelos, Greece | Greeka
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