Deciding to go to Skiathos, the gorgeous Greek island is easy. Indeed, the island hosts some of the best hotels and beaches in Greece. We know the island pretty well, so we’ll help you decide where to stay in Skiathos. The island is small, and it’s easy to move around even if you don’t drive. On the same day, you can visit several beaches, enjoy a killer sunset, and dine in Skiathos Town. What else could you possibly ask for? A plethora of fantastic restaurants, bars, and Greek people, the best hosts in Europe, complete the feast.
- 1 Where to Stay in Skiathos
- 2 The Best Beaches in Skiathos
- 3 Our Recommendation for the Best Place to Stay in Skiathos
- 4 How to Get to Skiathos
Where to Stay in Skiathos
The island’s capital, Skiathos Town, is the largest city in the Sporades. It’s a beautiful coastal town with historic architecture surrounded by gorgeous nature. The city lies on a small peninsula close to the island’s easternmost corner. A busy passenger port occupies the central part of its eastern coast. To the south of it, there is a small island with ruins of a Venetian Fortress. All along the seaside promenade, lively bars, restaurants, and clubs serve delicious Greek food. There is a nice pedestrian street, with shops for every wallet, several ancient churches, and a colorful museum.
Hotels in Skiathos Town
Most of the island’s hotels are in Skiathos Town, especially boutique hotels. We suggest booking accommodation in Skiathos Town if you are into culture and entertainment. If you plan on spending most of your time on the beach, you should stay close to one of them.
La Piscine Art Hotel, Philian Hotels and Resorts
Undoubtedly the best hotel in town is the La Piscine Art Hotel, Philian Hotels and Resorts. This exclusive art hotel offers stylish rooms, a swimming pool, and a top-class restaurant.
If you are looking for something a little more private, then Amira is your best bet. The modern apart-hotel offers rooms with spectacular views, a swimming pool, and a garden.
If you want to stay on the beach, but close to the action, then Megali Ammos is your best choice. This long sandy beach serves as Skiathos Town’s public beach. Though not as impressive as Koukonaries or Agia Paraskevi, Megali Ammos is nevertheless quite a nice beach. Besides, it’s the island’s longest sandy beach. The eastern part of the beach is more crowded with hotels and restaurants all along. The western part (also known as Ftelia Beach) is more natural. From Megali Ammos you can easily walk to Skiathos Town. The port is some 15 minutes away.
Hotels in Megali Ammos
There are dozens of hotels and private apartments close to Megali Ammos, on the western outskirts of Skiathos Town. Most hotels are smaller sizes and the whole place has a somewhat urban feel.
Tomato Beach Hotel
We stayed at the wonderful Tomato Beach Hotel and had a blast. The accommodation is only a few meters from the beach, quite close to Skiathos Town. Our suite had a comfortable bedroom, a large living room, and a terrace overlooking the sea. The staff was amazing. They went out of their way to make us feel welcome!
If you are looking for a private apartment, Megali Ammos offers quite a few. Villa Ftelia is an oasis of peace only a step away from the beach. It consists of two villas, perfect for groups of up to six people.
The Best Beaches in Skiathos
As mentioned above, Skiathos Island hosts some of the best beaches in Greece. To us, Koukounaries Beach is one of the best beaches in Skiathos. The large sandy beach is between two hills. Next to the beach, there is a dense pine tree forest, home to many bird species. There are no buildings along the beach, thus its natural feel. That said, numerous bars make it somewhat noisy. The good thing is you can walk to two nearby beaches, Banana and Little Banana. The former feels like a smaller version of Koukounaries, just a bit quieter. The latter is Skiathos’ only nudist beach.
Hotels in Koukounaries
There are no hotels directly on Koukounaries Beach. A large lagoon occupies the area behind the pine forest, with small hotels and guesthouses next to its shore. There is also a church, a supermarket, and a couple of open-air restaurants. Many of the best Skiathos hiking trails start here.
Skiathos has only a handful of luxury hotels. Among them, Elivi Skiathos is the best place to stay in Skiathos. The lavish five-star hotel occupies a large private terrain on the island’s southwestern corner. Apart from direct access to Koukounaries and Banana Beaches, it has a private beach, Xenia.
For those of you that prefer private accommodation, we absolutely recommend Aelia Studios. It offered us everything we needed for a perfect holiday: a comfortable bed, a clean bathroom, kitchenette, and a balcony with views. Trust us, Aelia Studios in Koukounaries is undoubtedly one of the best places to stay in Skiathos.
Agia Paraskevi Beach
Agia Paraskevi is the second most visited beach on Skiathos. This long sandy beach is located halfway between Koukounaries and Skiathos Town. The town of Platanias is a few steps away from the beach. It hosts numerous small and midsized hotels, restaurants, and a few shops. In between the town and the beach, there is a sort of a marshland, giving the whole place a natural feel. Though there are a few bars and restaurants on the beach, it is still relatively quiet. Even more peaceful is the nearby Kolios Beach. This small beach, 10 minutes east of Agia Paraskevi, is the perfect place for a family holiday.
Hotels in Agia Paraskevi
There are plenty of hotels in Agia Paraskevi, Skiathos’ prime sea resort. Most of them are next to the island’s main road, some 100 meters away from the beach. The only hotel directly on the beach is the grand Skiathos Princess Hotel.
Whenever we visit a beach destination we always stay directly on the beach. In Agia Paraskevi, the only place with direct access to the beach is the Skiathos Princess Hotel. This five-star resort is undoubtedly one of the best hotels in Skiathos if not all of Greece. Located at the west end of the beach it offers a gorgeous garden, a swimming pool, and large rooms with sea views.
For those of you that prefer staying in private accommodation, Agia Paraskevi offers several good options. The family-run Villa Karina is 4 minutes away from Agia Paraskevi and 7 minutes away from Kolios Beach. The chic villa is surrounded by one of the nicest gardens on the island.
Troulos Beach is another popular resort town on the southern coast of Skiathos. It is somewhat smaller than Koukounaries and Agia Paraskevi, but equally beautiful. Due to its location by the main road, it tends to get relatively busy too. Again we are talking about a nice sandy beach, with lush green hills on both sides. There are no buildings next to the beach, except for the old Troulos Bay Hotel. The village of Troulos is half a kilometer away up on the hills. Most hotels are by the main road, between the village and the beach. There are no other beaches nearby.
Hotels in Troulos
Apart from the Troulos Bay Hotel, no other hotel has direct access to Troulos Beach. Thus, we recommend staying as close as possible. There is not much to see in the area, and you don’t want to waste extra time getting to the beach.
Hotel Korali is the only hotel you can book online located between the main road and the beach. It’s a splendid hotel with spacious rooms, a nice garden, and a swimming pool. Their rooms have a kitchenette, so you can prepare your meals!
Villa Zaharo and Lilian Apartments
If you are looking for something even more private, Villa Zaharo and Lilian Apartments is for you. Located west of the village, it’s in a privileged location right next to the beach. All of their rooms have balconies with sea views. Just picture yourself sipping a cocktail and enjoying the view of the Troulonisi Islet. Perfection!
Achladies and Other Beaches
All three main beaches in Skiathos are on its southern coast. While you cannot stay next to the beaches on the north, there are plenty of hotels and tourist apartments on its western coast. Achladies is the most popular beach south of Skiathos Town. It is located 2 kilometers away from the town, after Megali Ammos. It’s a lovely sandy beach tucked between the hills. In the area, you can also stay next to Vassilias beach, north of Achladies. South of Achladies, there are even more nice beaches. Tzaneria and Kanapitsa are the most popular ones.
Hotels in Achladies
There are far fewer hotels in Achladies and the surrounding beaches. Esperides Beach resort occupies the central part of Achladies beach, but you cannot book it online at the moment. Instead, you can stay in smaller nearby hotels, or further away from the beach.
Maniatis Garden is a nice villa set in a lush green garden. Though their rooms don’t have sea views, the villa is right next to the beach. The next-door beach bar and taverna are part of the villa.
Though Villa Kim lies on the hill, it is well worth the climb. This beautiful traditional house offers different kinds of apartments, all of them with a private balcony. The views from the property are unforgettable.
Our Recommendation for the Best Place to Stay in Skiathos
Skiathos is perfect for holidays mixing culture and relaxation. That’s probably what we like the most about the island. You get the best of both worlds: a city with great bars and restaurants and gorgeous sandy beaches. Skiathos is a pretty small island, so you can stay at different beaches or base yourself in one, and go on day trips to the others. We are convinced that Koukounaries is the best area to stay in Skiathos. You get to choose between three gorgeous beaches, numerous restaurants and explore magnificent nature. If you want to enjoy Skiathos’ nightlife, you should either stay in the town or near Megali Ammos beach. Otherwise, you can take a public bus or a taxi from any other beach.
How to Get to Skiathos
Flying to Skiathos
You can fly directly to Skiathos. The tiny Skiathos International Airport is located some 5 km north of Skiathos Town. The airport handles regular flights from Athens throughout the year. In summer, there are direct flights to Skiathos from many international destinations, including London, Stockholm, Oslo, and Helsinki. There is no public transport connecting the airport with the rest of the island. Instead, you can take any of the metered taxis. They are inexpensive, and taxi drivers have the best tips! It takes only 10 minutes to reach the town.
Additionally, you can fly to Volos Airport, take a taxi to downtown Volos and a ferry to Skiathos.
Arriving to Skiathos by Ferry
The most convenient way of getting to Skiathos is by ferry from the port city of Volos. Several boats cover the route and they vary in speed, comfort, and price. We use Ferryhopper to check prices and book our ferry tickets around Greece. A typical ferry ride from Volos to Skiathos lasts between 1h45m and 2h15m depending on the ship. Ferries are modern, reliable and the whole process is safe and carefree. If you have an extra day in Volos, try to visit any of the villages on Pelion Mountain. We suggest Makrinitsa.
In summer, there are also ferries connecting Skiathos with Agios Konstantinos on the mainland. If you are driving from Athens this is your best option.