They say that nowhere in Greece can boast beaches like those of Chalkidiki. The region has the perfect combination of that distinctive Greek light, unspoiled landscapes, colours and fragrances. And the glorious natural setting is complemented by the rich culinary fare of the region and the living religious traditions of its people, manifested in a host of feast days and other ceremonies and rituals.
This is a place where all your senses will come to life, whether on the endless expanses of sand of the fashionable, cosmopolitan beaches, or in the intimacy of the many secluded bays and coves. The scent of the pine trees and the salt brine of the sea combine to relax the body and spirit, leaving you at peace to enjoy the grandeur of the regions famed sunrises and sunsets.
What to see
Chalkidiki boasts an amazing 550km of coastline, featuring a thousand different beaches, some offering an endless expanse of golden sand; others are rockier, creating intriguing possibilities for exploring. Some beaches are stunning and crowded socialising spots, while others are nothing more than beautiful deserted coves among the rocks. All of them however are blessed with emerald, crystal clear waters, reflecting the deep green of the nearby pine forests. The Blue Flags Chalkidiki every year is awarded with are well-deserved.
The most popular beaches which you must visit are West Coast, Kassandra, Sithonia and of course the famous Ammouliani island!
Chalkidiki appears in many Greek myths; it is said that the Giant Enceladus was buried in Kassandra. It is also said that Giant Olympus threw a rock forming the peninsula of Mount Athos and Sithonia took its name from Sithon, the son of Poseidon, the ancient Greek god. The remains of ancient extinct animal species found at Nikiti, Vrasta and Triglia, bear witness to Chalkidiki’s past. The findings at Petralona cave prove man’s presence in the region, 700,000 years ago – the findings include a human skull, dating back 200,000 years.
During the early 20th century, the people of Chalkidiki joined the fight for the liberation of Macedonia. The long-awaited liberation arrived in October 1912. Ten years later, the arrival of thousands of refugees from Asia Minor led to the formation of 27 new villages that contributed enormously to the region’s cultural and economic growth.
The large region of Chalkidiki has many popular resorts where you can relax plus try various water activities. Watersports in Halkidiki are found in the most popular resorts of the region, including Sarti, Kallithea, Neos Marmaras, Vourvourou, Haniotis, Perfkohoti and others. These Chalkidiki watersports include many games, from ringos and speedboat to jet ski to kayak and windsurf. They are great for everyone and provide a special thing to do during your holidays there. Scuba diving is also a very popular sport in Chalkidiki. The three peninsulas of the region offer very interesting Halkidiki diving sites for all levels, including reefs, underwater caves and old shipwrecks. Even diving trips to the Athos peninsula are organized, a region that has been characterized as a region of special natural beauty by Unesco.
Mount Athos -commonly known as the Holy Mountain- is the spiritual capital of the Orthodox Christian world, consisting of 20 monasteries, 12 skites, and about 700 houses, cells or hermitages and approximately 2,000 monks. The “Garden of Virgin Mary” is the paradise of the eastern peninsula of Chalkidiki! The Monastic State of the Holy Mountain is known to be the main carrier of Orthodox Christianity and holds spiritual glory and great history. It is a religious community with 1.000 years old monasteries, cells in caves or between the rocks, towers, domes, belfries, chants, etc. It is listed in Unesco’s World Heritage Monuments.