Dear visitor,

You may go off exploring on your own and discover maybe more small beaches. However, wherever you go, we hope that you will maintain them as clean as you found them, so that the next visitor will enjoy them as much as you did. Cleanliness means respect to nature.

We thank you in advance.


Sithonia, the second peninsula of Chalkidiki, is located between the peninsulas Kassandra and Mount Athos. Sithonia is surrounded by the Toronean Gulf at the east side and the Siggitic Gulf at the west. Was named to Sithon, son of the god of the sea Poseidon. Less populated is preferred by travellers who enjoy nature and tranquillity. Road infrastructure is not as well developed as a Kassandra, and no many places for entertainment, but a great place to escape from civilization.

While you are visiting the area of Sithonia you will have the chance to admire endless magical landscapes, golden beaches, secluded beaches, covered in green valleys and forests, fish villages, but also the magnificent architectual structure of houses and churches. Only in Sithonia you can enjoy the unique beaches with the perfect combination of green and blue as the pine trees reach the sand and waves. When you visit Sithonia you will discover that every site you visit it will be very different from the next.

All the areas such Nikiti, Agios Nikolaos, Metaggitsi, Pirgadikia, Neos Marmaras, Parthenonas, Vourvourou, Ormos Panagias, Toroni, Porto Koufo, Sarti, Sikia will stay deep in your mind rewarding you with wonderful memories. A visit to these villages will fill you with a new experience and remarkable icons of the architecture, the pine filled beaches, the narrow side walks and the flower filled town squares with the island atmosphere.

Amongst the many worth seeing places in Sithonia is the cosmopolitan Neos Marmaras, the ancient city, the castle and the church of Agios Athanasios in Toroni, the windmills in Sikia and the 16th century church in Nikiti. Porto Koufo, is the largest and safest natural harbor in Greece, which is mentioned by Thoukididis as “hollow harbor” it appears to be the fishing spot in the area. South, from the harbors exit you will find Kartalia, the most southern part of Sithonia, a very impressive area which puts its visitors under a spell with its rocky secluded beaches.



Call this bag “symphony of green and blue” because of its rich vegetation down to the blue waters of the coast. Beaches are long and sandy for the most part absolutely bare, broken into smaller or larger bays. Water and other bags is crystal clear, transparent and peaceful. However, the very bottom of the beach is rocky and you should beware of sea urchins. Water is salty from the Black Sea and is much easier to stay on the surface. Sea bustling with life and if you take underwater goggles, you can see the passing of fish passages, small octopus and sea snail.

From the top of the highest peak, Mt Dragoudelis (811m), one can enjoy a magnificent view from of the whole of Sithonia peninsula, with the conical Mt Athos visible to the east and Kassandra to the west.

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Following the coast road from Nea Moudania eastwards, after 37 km., or from Polygyros south-southeast, also after 37 km. we arrive at Nikiti, the biggest town in the area that houses the City Hall of Sithonia and has been named after St. Nikitas’ church of the 16th century.

Nikiti Information area

Nikiti with its recent rapid development has turned out to be an attraction pole to tourists, also due to the traditional colour of the 3-day fair on St. Nikitas’ name day (September 14-16), as well as to the international swim crossing between the first and the second peninsula on Toroneos gulf that the Municipality of Sithonia together with the Cultural Youth Association of Nikiti organize every year on the last Sunday of July.

Worth seeing : -The old part of the town, on its north side, with the traditional Macedonian style buildings with characteristic chimneys which one can visit any time of day. – St. Nikitas’s church, built in 1867. – The old school. – The ruins of the Basilika type church of Sofronios, a 16th century church with excellent mosaics, at 2,5 km. southeast of Nikiti.

Two km. after Nikiti, the road is divided into two again. If we continue south following the country coast road facing an enchanting scenery, we can admire the transparent bluegreen waters of the small bays of Toroneos gulf looking down from the top of the ribbon road lining the foot of the mountain of Sithonia with its rich flora. We are going over the magnificent beaches Kastri, Ai-Giannis, Koviou, the famous beach of Kalogria with the water sports, also Elia, Lagomandra and the continuous lacy beaches with the modern camping grounds, as well as the picturesque beaches Tripotamos, Azapiko, Koutsoupia and Paradise just outside Neos Marmaras. Besides, at 8 km. from Nikiti, on our left, up on the mountain there is the settlement of Aghios Pavlos with the monastery of Aghia Fotini and at 18 km. from Nikiti, just beside Marmaras, the traditional settlement of Parthenon that reminds us of a pre-1960 settlement.

Walking mountain routes (7) in Sithonia 1

Walking mountain routes on the all green mountain Itamos start from various parts of the coast. Kalogrias Bay in Nikiti Area. An easy hiking track that goes up to a great height starts (ΑΡΧΗ) from the road on Hotel Athena Palace and leads us to the church of Apostle Paul (ΑΓ.ΠΑΥΛΟΣ) next to which there is an ancient spring with crystal clear water. It is said that Apostle Paul, passing from there and feeling thirsty, prayed to God, hit the ground with his stick and ever since the spring keeps pouring water. Continuing our walking route we arrive through narrow tracks full of pines to Petros (ΠΕΤΡΟΣ), a rock from the top of which one can view both sides of the peninsula. (Altitude 298m)


Walking mountain routes (9) in Sithonia 2

One more long but impressive 4 hour walking route starts from Neos Marmaras to visit the traditional settlement Parthenonas (ΠΑΡΘΕΝΩΝΑΣ) passing first through an old watermill with a dam and then through olive trees and forests to return to Neos Marmaras, either by the same track back or by a steeper trail parallel to a small river (4 hours, elevation 360m)

Neos Marmaras Information area

Neos Marmaras, at 126 km. from Thessaloniki and 55 km. from Polygyros, with the forest mountain Itamos above it and the small (1 square km.) turtle shaped but full of pines island Kelyfos in its bay, is the most cosmopolitan resort in Sithonia. The four natural bays succeeding one another compose the backbone of the town. It has had a remarkable development during the last years, especially after the establishment of Porto Carras next to it, only 2 km. souther, in 1970.

Porto Carras, which owns an area of 17 million m2 full of olive trees, vines and other plantations, produces excellent wines that are exported abroad and includes a big complex of hotels, a marina, an helicodrome, water sports, horse riding camp, seatherapy center & spa and a casino.

Beaches nestle at the bottom of Mount, which is dotted with citrus, almond and pine trees along with the grapes that go into making the globally known Carras wines. Sample them at the local wine-tasting center, which is a part of the famous Porto Carras tourist resort.

Walking mountain routes (10) in Sithonia 3

From Porto Carras we can also go hiking on a route that starts at the marina, follows the coastline through forest tracks and along small sandy bays and finally climbs up the mountain through Porto Carras’s vineyards and passes by John Carras’s big cottage and then comes back through a wide variety of wild flowers and fruit trees (Altitude 160m).

Continuing our route always along the seaside and after we pass over Spalathronissia, a complex of islands, and the beaches Tristinika and Destenika, we reach the village Toroni at 78 km. from Moudania with its marvellous long beach.

Toroni Information area

Toroni is built on the ruins of the ancient town of which very few still exist, but which show its power and growth. One of the most visited places in northern Greece, Toroni is famed not only for its almost tropical beaches, but also for its position in Greek history. The present-day settlement bears the name of ancient Torone, which was colonized from Chalcis in the 8th century BC and flourished in the Classical period. Excavations that have been carried out on the area brought to light sections of the fortifications of the ancient Torone, including a round tower and the walls of the acropolis. Mt Itamos, thick with pine and plane trees, looks proudly over the virgin coastline. It is one of the few areas in Greece where diving is permitted.

From Toroni, if we continue southeast on the coast road, we pass through the village Porto Koufo.


Porto Koufo Information area

Porto Koufo, a small picturesque harbor built in a deep niche in the sea. Its construction is such that in the harbor area no sea sound can be heard. Thoukididis , the ancient Greek historian, mentions the place as the “kophos limen” which means the silent harbor. And indeed Porto Koufo, with its rocky shores containing large caves, is one of the safest natural harbors in Greece. Greenery surrounds this seafront village whose residents and visitors revel in the sight of crystal-clear waters lapping onto a long sandy beach. Fishing boats loll about at the harbor as their owners shake out their nets, smiling and laughing no matter what the day’s catch.


Walking mountain routes (11) in Sithonia 4

From Porto Koufo (ΠΟΡΤΟ ΚΟΥΦΟ) another hiking route starts along the west coast of the peninsula and it continues on rich in flora and fauna goat paths to end up on the furthest south top in the peninsula, the Kapros (ΚΑΠΡΟ), where one can find remnants of a concrete aqueduct, as well as bases of antiaircraft weapons since World War II. The view from Kapros is breathtaking since we can admire both sides of the peninsula. When the atmosphere is bright, one can see all the way to Sporades islands at the southwest. (Altitude 273m).

Sikia Information area

Then, overpassing cape Drepano, at the furthest south end of the peninsula, at 88 km. from Moudania driving the way we did and 98 km. from Moudania having driven through the other side of the peninsula along Siggitikos gulf, we come to beautiful Kalamitsi, Klimataria and enchanting Kriaritsi, endless sandy beaches on Siggitikos gulf.

Then, after Linaraki beach, Tourkolimionas bay, we end up in Sikia, the biggest village of Sithonia, 3 km. west from our route, named after a huge fig tree (sykia means fig tree) that was just outside the village. We find the 19th century traditional settlement of Sikia, or ‘Logos’ as was named by some Athonite documents of the Byzantine period, one of the largest villages in Sithonia. Today the village has to show to the visitor its parish church, dedicated to St. Athanasius, with its carved wooden shrines. The beautiful beach of Sikia, is 3 km away from the village. To the west of the village, on the “Koukos” hill, there are remains of a fortress and evidence of a prehistoric settlement. On this site, in September 1987, began a systematic excavation of an early Iron Age cemetery (10th to 8th BC centuries). So far many tombs have been investigated and the grave offerings, which have survived are of exceptional interest.-Koukos, a hill on the west end of the village, where a prehistoric settlement existed, as well as the windmills on Sykia beach.

-The ruins of a Byzantine temple in the settlement Episkopi at the south end of the settlement are also worth visiting. In 1821 the population of the village was the first in Halkidiki to rebel against the Turks and the village was destroyed, while army chieftain Tsamis Karatassos burnt the village church with the Turks inside it.

-Koukos, a hill on the west end of the village, where a prehistoric settlement existed, as well as the windmills on Sykia beach.

-The ruins of a Byzantine temple in the settlement Episkopi at the south end of the settlement are also worth visiting.  In 1821 the population of the village was the first in Halkidiki to rebel against the Turks and the village was destroyed, while army chieftain Tsamis Karatassos burnt the village church with the Turks inside it.

Walking mountain routes (12) in Sithonia 5

One more 4 hour walking route starts at Sikia (ΣΥΚΙΑ) and following a circling and steep but safe path over the north side of the village on goat tracks, it offers an enchanting view of the village and the surroundings (4 hours, elevation 345m).

From Sikia we return to the main road and after an 10 km. long lace of small beautiful bays we reach Sarti.

Sarti Information area

Sarti, a village built in the general area of ancient Sarti, with deep bluegreen waters and intense tourism in the summer time. At 135 km. from Thessaloniki the town has recently become an extremely attractive resort and the visitor’s impression on entering the village is quite breathtaking.

One can see the enormous beach with a crystal blue green sea and the impressive green mountains surrounding the village. If our visit concurs with the “Dekapentavgousto” (15th of August) we will have the opportunity of enjoying ourselves at the traditional fair honoring Virgin Mary.

Three km. norther and after passing along Ahlada beach with its small marina, we find beautiful Platanitsi and 4 km. later Armenistis beach with its startling white stones in the bluegreen water.Lovers of wild nature and breathtaking beauty should not neglect visiting beaches like Kavourotripes, Armenisti and Platanitsi. Crystal-clear waters, white sandy beaches and secluded coves leave the visitor unforgettable memories. The sun mirrors upon the sea, the sky changes a myriad of colors at sunset, the sand shimmers on the beaches, wet by the deep-blue waters and the scattered pebbles shine in elegance among the waves that reach the seashore.

Vourvourou Information area

Fourteen km. norther we reach Vourvourou, a summer settlement, drowned in pine trees and olive trees, after we first pass from the wonderful beaches Lagonissi, Demetrakia, Fteroti, Karidi, Pnevmatiko and Platani, among which we can visit two old parts of the Agio Oros monasteries of Koutloumousiou and Zografou. We should also visit the nine islands that lie in the bays from Vourvourou to Ormos Panaghias, which are Ampelitsi, Kalogria, Peristeri, Aghios Issidoros and the biggest of all Diaporos. The seashores of all these islands are equally lacy as the ones they face on the main land and some of them are isolated, too.

Vourvourou is known for its natural beauty. During the 60’s the teaching staff of the University of Thessaloniki, developed a holiday resort in Vourvourou, known nation-wide for its revolutionary design and respect for natural surroundings. Visitors can enjoy a beautiful scenery and should also visit the chapel of Panagia.

Continuing north and passing from Kounia beach, Livari beach, which is a natural sealake, Karagatsi and Galini beach, finally, after 6 km. from Vourvourou, we find Ormos Panaghias, which is a picturesque harbor from which cruises start that take us around Mount Athos with its picturesque monasteries that literally hang from the steep tops of the peninsula’s mountains and which one can admire during these one-day cruises.
Following our route north we reach Agios Nikolaos, a small inland and romantic town with traditional houses of the 19th century on old pebblestoned streets. We can also visit the old churches of St. George and St. Paraskevi. The area is well known for its excellent production of wine, tsipouro, honey and olive oil. Continuing north through an imposing drive with tall trees on each side of the road, we arrive at Salonikiou beach, a wide open bay, ideal for sailing. From Salonikiou beach we have two choices. One is to follow the road west up on the mountain to Metanghitsi, 26 km. southwest of Polygyros, among olive trees and vine trees, from where we can continue north in the mountain and visit westwards the small villages Plana, Smixi and Miliada on a route surrounded with pines and, maybe, 6 km. norther the bigger village Megali Panaghia (17 km. north of Salonikiou beach), or maybe, continue eastwards from Plana through Aghios Ioannis Prodromos up to, 7 km. easter, Pyrgadikia. Second, we can continue north from Salonikiou and after an 8 km. drive, we arrive at Pyrgadikia, a picturesque village built on the top of the hill above the sea and where gradually the houses have reached the seashore. Following the country coast road and passing above cape Arkouda we find the village Develiki on the seaside with its beautiful sandy beach. From there we can either turn west up on the mountain to Gomati and from there to Megali Panaghia at the top of mount Holomontas, or we can continue east to Ierissos, the gate to the third leg of Chalkidiki Athos, or, as it is better known, “The Holy Mountain”.


Portal of the Region of Central Macedonia, regional authority of Chalkidiki 


150 close-up photos from the nicest wild flowers of the area


Stagira – Birthplace of Aristoteles

Birthplace of Aristoteles, the greatest philosopher of ancient times and the teacher of Alexander the Great.

The city was founded in ca. 655 B.C. by colonists from Andros. After the Persian Wars it joined the First Athenian League, in 424 B.C. it rebelled against it, and during the Peloponnesian War became an ally of the Spartans against Athens. Later, the city joined the Chalkidian League and in 348 B.C. it was captured by king Philip II.

Tradition has it that the inhabitants of Stagira tranferred Aristotle’s relics to the city, buried it there, and founded a festival in his honour, called the “Aristoteleia”.

Recent excavations conducted by the 16th E.P.C.A. have brought to light the early Classical fortification of the city, preserved in very good condition, various public buildings in the Agora (the Classical stoa), an Archaic sanctuary, the Thesmophorion, private houses of the Classical and Hellenistic periods, and the waterworks of the city.

The archaeological site is always open. You can visit follow sites for more informations: ARISTOTLE`S PARK and Ancient Stagira


Acanthus was the most important city and harbour of NE Chalkidiki. It was founded in the middle of the 7th century B.C. by colonists from Andros, on the site of a prehistoric settlement. The city extends on a ridge almost 600 m. SE of modern Ierissos and is currently excavated by the 16th E.P.C.A.

Sections of the fortification walls of the city are preserved, including an impressive part of the acropolis; the whole area, though, is covered with architectural members and buildings of the Classical and, mainly, the Hellenistic period.

The extensive cemetery of the city, containing some 9000 graves, lies on the shore and was used from the Archaic period (7th, 6th centuries B.C.) until modern times (17th century).
The archaeological site is always open.

You can visit follow site for more informations: Ancient Acanthus


Ancient Olynthos, the most important political centre of Chalkidiki in the Classical period, occupies two hills: on the South Hill lies the city founded by the Bottiaeans in the 7th century B.C., which was destroyed by the Persians in 479 B.C. On the North Hill lies the Classical city, built in the Hippodameian system, with vertically crossing wide and narrow streets, forming regular architectural blocks (87 x 35 m.). Remarkable is the type of the Olynthian house with the “pastas” on the north side of the interior courtyard, surrounded by rooms and auxiliary spaces. Very impressive are the mosaics found in the men’s quarters, which are among the earliest known specimens of the Classsical period.

The first excavations of the site were conducted in 1928-1938 by the American School of Classical Studies under the direction of Prof. D.M. Robinson. In 1992 the 16th E.P.C.A. undertook the task of the restoration and landscaping of the settlement on the North Hill.

  • Open Hours: 08:30 – 15:30
  • Ticket price: Full: €3, Reduced: €2

You can visit follow site for more informations: Ancient Olynthos

Toroni – The Lecythus fort

Surveys were conducted by the XVI Ephorate of Classical Antiquities in 1975. The harbour port, Lecythus (Λήκυθος), is being refurbished. The ancient city extends in three main areas: the Acropolis located to the rocky and extremely bluff hill between Porto Koufo and Lecythus, which was connected with the city via long walls; the main ancient city, in the plateau southwest of acropolis up to the coast, that includes Lecythus fort; and the Proasteion (suburb) of the city, in today’s narrow, but in antiquity much broader neck of land that connects Lecythus and the city.In Mythological Times Toroni was the wife of Proteus, son of Poseidon. There are traces of prehistoric settlements dating from the third millennium before Christ and many other relics of ancient, Early Christian and Byzantine monuments, which bear witness to the fact that the area is continuously inhabited since the Neolithic Age. Ancient Toroni was founded by colonists from Chalkida in the 8th century BC. By the 5th century BC Toroni was already one of the most important cities in Chalkidiki. It had its own coin and was a member of the Delian League. Thucydides narrates that in 423BC Toroni was taken over by Spartan officer Brasidas. In 348BC the city was annexed to the state of Philip II of Macedon. In 168BC it was conquered by the Romans and the city fell into decline.In the Byzantine Era the area comprised of monastery dependencies, belonging to the monasteries on Holy Mt. Athos. Its mighty walls and other buildings were destroyed in the 19th century, when the Turks used the granite to pave central avenues in Constantinople and Thessaloniki. Findings from recent excavations confirmed the continuous habitation of the area since the end of the Neolithic Age up until the Ottoman Era. Architectural remains have been uncovered, however of a very fragmentary nature, since most were destroyed due to the continuous use of the space. The archaeologists placed particular emphasis on the cemetery of the settlement from the Iron Age, which is held to cover a period extending from late 2nd century until the middle of the 9th century. 134 tombs were uncovered in this cemetery, of which 118 contained ashes while 16 contained simple burials. 500 vessels also came to light, which were used either as urns or burial gifts.

The archaeological site is always open. You can visit follow site for more informations:

Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki

At present, the collection of Archaic to Late Roman sculptures from Thessaloniki and Macedonia in general is displayed in the central section of the museum. They illustrate the history of Thessaloniki from prehistoric times to Late Antiquity. These rooms display architectural members from an Ionic temple of the 6th century bc, sculptures of all periods from Macedonia, exhibits from the excavations in the palace complex built by Galerius in Thessaloniki city centre, a reconstruction of the facade of the Macedonian tomb in Ayia Paraskevi, Thessaloniki prefecture, with genuine architectural members, and finds (mainly gold artefacts) of the Archaic and Classical periods from the Sindos cemetery. In all these rooms, certain important exhibits have been singled out and further information about them is given to help visitors appreciate the importance of each exhibit and of the area and the period from which it comes.

  • Open Hours: Monday: 13.30-20.00, Tuesday- Sunday: 08.00-20.00
  • Ticket Prices: General: €6, Students: free, Senior citizens: 4€
  • Adress: 6 Manolis Andronikos St., GR 54621, Thessaloniki, Macedonia, Greece.

You can visit follow site for more informations:

Museum of Byzantine Civilisation of Thessaloniki

The museum has collections of sculpture, frescoes, mosaics, icons, and inscriptions from the Byzantine period. It has permanent exhibitions, rooms for temporary thematic exhibitions, conservation workshops, and storerooms. The exhibits include sculptures, wall paintings, mosaic floors, icons, metalwork, coins, inscriptions, glassware, and pottery.

At the moment, three permanent exhibitions are open, presenting aspects of the society and the art of the Early Christian period (4th–7th cent. ad) with emphasis on the transition from the ancient world to Christianity.
The subject of the first exhibition is Early Christian Churches, and it focuses on the design and the decoration of churches in the first centuries after Christianity triumphed. Outstanding exhibits include the ambo from the basilica by the Philippi Museum (6th cent. ad), a mosaic floor from a basilica found north of the Church of the Taxiarchs in Thessaloniki’s Upper Town (6th cent. ad), and an arch and piers from the Church of St Demetrios in Thessaloniki.

The subject of the second exhibition is Early Christian Cities and Dwellings, and it presents various aspects of economic life, domestic handicrafts, houses and their fixtures and fittings, as also details of food and clothing. The centre of the room is occupied by the reception room of a house with a mosaic floor and well preserved wall paintings imitating marble revetment. Other exhibits include amphoras that were used for trade in oil and wine and such everyday objects as ceramic ware, oil lamps, sewing and weaving equipment, and jewellery.

The third exhibition is titled From the Elysian Fields to the Christian Paradise, and it focuses on Early Christian cemeteries, sepulchral architecture and painting, cult customs, jewellery, and glass and clay vessels from excavated graves. There are tombs with painted decoration from Thessaloniki’s east and west cemeteries, epitaphs, sarcophagi, statues, and sculptures, and glassware and jewellery from graves (2nd–6th cent. ad).

  • Open Hours: Monday: 13.30-20.00, Tuesday-Sunday: 08.00-20.00
  • Ticket Prices: General: €4, Students: free, Senior citizens: 2€
  • Adress: 2, Stratou Av., GR 54013, Thessaloniki, Macedonia, Greece.

You can visit follow site for more informations:

The White Tower of Thessaloniki

The symbol of Thessaloniki, the White Tower is a 15th century fortification which was part of the city’s defences at the point where the seaward defence and the eastern wall met. Originally the barracks for the city’s sentries, in later years it served as a prison for condemned prisoners awaiting execution. It was reconstructed early in the 1980s and has functioned as a museum since 1985.Today the White Tower is used as the exhibition space of the Byzantine Museum of Thessaloniki. For the first few months of 2002 it housed ‘Byzantine Hours’, an exhibition devoted to ordinary life in Byzantine times.

  • Open Hours: Tuesday-Sunday: 08.30-15.00, Monday: closed
  • Ticket Prices: Adults: €3, Children: Free, Senior citizens: €2

You can visit follow site for more informations:

Petralona Caves

The bejewelled with stalagmites and stalactites Petralona Cave is formed about 300 m above sea level. The Cave was spotted the first half of the 20th century by the inhabitant of the Petralona village Philippos Chatzaridis (1892-1981), through an ovoid 0,7 m long fracture of the limestone Kalavros Mountain, which in its turn is created during Jurassic era (~150 million years) by undersea calcite sediments that emerged later on in various phases. Most probably during Mio-Pleiocene, about 5 million years ago, the Cave’s main compartments were formed.Internationally the Cave became known by the autumn of 1960, when another villager, Christos Sariannidis (1931-2001) along with five other men (three of whom scientists), found the famous fossilized skull of Petralona man.His research proved that Petralona Archanthropus (i.e. an archaic Homo sapiens) has an age of about 700.000 years ago, representing the oldest known Europeoid man. The above chronology is based on the detail analysis of the Cave Stratigraphy (until today 34 geological layers have been unearthed), as well as the study of the Palaeolithic tools and the Palaeofauna species that have been discovered in almost all layers. Among the fossils of the extinct species found in the Cave, lions, hyenas, bears, panthers, elephants, rhinos, megacerines, bisons, and various species of dears and equids (horse like) are included, as well as 25 species of birds, 16 species of rodents and 17 species of bats.

  • Open Hours: 09:00 to 18:00
  • Ticket Price: General: €7, Students: €4

You can visit follow site for more informations:

History of Sithonia

Sithonia peninsula took its name from Sithon, king of Macedonia, son of Poseidon and Ossa. Mythology has it that Sithon was the father of beautiful Pallini, who was pursuited by numerous wooers from all over the world. Whoever claimed Pallini to be his bride, had to fight her father and because all wooers failed to defeat Sithon, Pallini wouldn’t get married.

When Sithon grew old, he would have the wooers fight each other. During one of these duels the oponents were Kleitos and Dryantas. Pallini’s heart was beating for Kleitos and she feared he might get killed. She confided her agony to an elder nurser, who at first calmed her. He then bribed Dryanta’s charioteer to undo his master’s chariot so that Kleitos would win the duel. But Sithon found out the conspiracy and decided to burn Pallini alive.

A ‘heavenly’ rain put the fire out the right moment and Pallini was saved. Sithon unerstood the Divine Sign, admitted his fault and let the two youngs get married.

During ancient times, in Sithonia peninsula there were the cities Sermyli, Fyskella, Siggos, Parthenopolis, Galipsos, Toroni, Derra, Ampelos, Sarti, Piloros, Assa, Sithoni.

History of Chalkidiki

Greek mythology refers often to Chalkidiki. The Ancients knew the region as Flegra – the Place of Fire – because it was believed to be the place where an epic battle ground for the fire took place between the Olympian Gods and the Giants, the sons of Gaia (Earth). According to the myth, Kassandra got its name when one of the Giants, named Egelados, was crushed by Kassandra promontory, thrown by goddess Athena and was buried underneath. It is considered that Egelados did not die at that time and every so often he tries to struggle out from under the weight of rocks causing earthquakes (the Greek word for earthquake is egelados). Later data indicates that Kassandra took its name from Kassandros (a King of Macedonia).

The Athos peninsula was named after the giant Athos, who during the famous battle, threw a mountain at the gods, but failed to find his target. The second leg received its name from Sithon, son of the sea god Poseidon. The lots of similar stories about the Battle of Giants fascinated later poets and artists, and as a result the conflict is one of the most common scenes depicted on ancient pottery and sculpture.

All these myths are not unconnected with the geological phenomena, which are evident in Kassandra, like the subsidence in the centre of the peninsula, and the sulphur springs at Agia Paraskevi. The myths are part of the effort throughout the centuries to explain the oddness of the ground. Scientific research of course, has indicated that the geomorphology of Paleontological Chalkidiki was much more different than nowadays. Fossil bones who belong to elephants and other prehistoric animals now extinct found at excavations, declare a different period where probably humans never witnessed. In addition, excavations at the Petralona Cave have shown traces of what is said to be the earliest known controlled fires, started by men around 700,000 years ago. The skull found in the cave is thought to belong to a person who lived there some 250,000 years ago and suggests that humans populated Chalkidiki in prehistoric times. Established organized societies take place in Chalkidiki around the fourth century BC and its oldest inhabitants were called “Thracians” and “Pelasgoi”.


It wasn’t until the eighth century BC that the population was expanded by the arrival of colonists from southern Greece, mainly from the city state of Halkis (hence Chalkidiki) in Evoia. Other newcomers arrived from the island of Andros, Corinth and Athens and began to build their cities. By the fifth century BC, the cities of Chalkidiki got sucked into the ongoing struggle between the Persians and Athens and its allies, known as the Persian Wars, described by Herodotus “the father of history”. One of the results was a siege of the city of Olynthos, after which the Persians killed all the inhabitants. At the end of the fifth century BC, the 32 most important towns of the peninsula united under the leadership to form the “Halkidean League”._




Peace didn’t last long, however, and in 352 BC Chalkidiki became involved in the Peloponnesian Wars between Athens and Sparti, and then in the ensuing power struggle with King Philip II in an attempt to halt his ambition to conquer all of Greece. They ended up on the losing side. The city of Olynthos was destroyed, and Chalkidiki was incorporated into the Macedonian Empire. As the world knows, his son, Alexander the Great continued his father’s dream of expansion, pushing in a few short years to the banks of the Indus River. Stageira, a colony in Chalkidiki founded by the island of Andros, was the birthplace of Aristotle, one of the greatest minds in human history and the teacher of Alexander the Great, who often mentioned that in his father owed his life, but in his teacher Aristotle, owed the values of his life.

During the Macedonian Kingdom, the new state of affairs led to the creation of three new cities: Kassandra (315 BC), Ouranoupolis (315 BC), and Antigoneia (280 BC). In 168 BC, the Romans along with the rest of Macedonia conquered Chalkidiki. After the decline of Rome, it formed part of the Byzantine Empire. The 150- castles, churches, bridges and other structures that have been documented, while Mount Athos possesses a wealth of information on Byzantium, evidence its position within the Byzantine Empire.

Chalkidiki was converted into Christianity in 50 A.D. It was the time when the apostle P a u l passed from A p o l l o n i a on his way from P h i l i p p i to T h e s s a l o n i k i. During the Christian centuries it will suffer many devastating raids by the Goths (269), the Huns (6th century) and the Catalans (1307).

The monastic sate of Mount Athos was organized during the 9th century A.D. In 855, Vasilios A’ of Macedon dynasty states in a chrysobull that “the monks should be left to lead a quiet and calm life” until the end of time.

During the 10th century a lot of little monasteries were gathered around Karyes. The Monastery of Great Lavra was built in 963 and afterwards the other 19 monasteries were also built. The Saint State has been constituting a unique world since then. A place of mystery, of hard exercise and spiritual guidance was able to preserve all its precious treasures, to cultivate the Greek-orthodox education and, in difficult times, to help in the rescue of the national consciousness.

After the 10th century most of the cultivated land passed into the hands of Mount Athos, (“Dependencies”). From the settlements of the monastery tenants many villages originated and developed next to those already existing. After the 12th century, in the bounds of the administrative reform, it was divided in the following areas under a captain’s authority : of Kalamaria, Ermileia, Ierissos, Kassandreia and Loggos.

A large part of Chalkidiki was annexed by the Serbian State in the mid 14th century. Kassandra and other seaside territories were under the Venetian rule before their enslavement to the Turks.

In 1430, Chalkidiki was subjugated by the Turks and became part of the Sanjak of Thessaloniki. It was divided into three tax districts : of Cassandra, limited to the natural boundaries of the Peninsula, of Hasikohoria, including “all the cultivated land and mild mountains, stretching as far as the Toroneos and Thermaikos gulfs”, and finally Mademohoria. Mount Athos constituted an independent region.

Despite the special advantages of each region, the residents of Chalkidiki, along with the rest of Greeks, suffered at the period of slavery from the oppressive power. However, they succeeded in not losing their faith and in keeping their national conscience. In the late 18th century all the regions achieved growth (increase in wheat production, silk and livestock). Because of this prosperity, the coastal villages faced a lot of pirate raids.

In May 1821, Chalkidiki revolted, without success, under the leadership of Emmanuel Pappas and as a result it was destroyed completely. It will gain strength again and in 1854 will be shattered by a new revolution under the leadership of Tsiamis Karatasos.

In the beginning of the 20th century, Chalkidiki takes place in the Macedonian Struggle. Many Chalkidiki residents not only participated in various corps of Macedonian-fighters, but they formed small corps themselves and fought against the partisans. The much desired freedom will come eventually in October 1912.

In 1922, there was an exchange of populations, as the result of the Asia Minor catastrophe. Refugees from Asia Minor, Eastern Thrace and Bulgaria moved in and injected Chalkidiki with new economic and political strength while introducing their unique culture, music and foods.

Next to the local villages sprouted 27 new, contribution to the economical and cultural development of Chalkidiki is serious.

Having withstood raids by foreign powers over the centuries, the people of Chalkidiki exhibit a great sense of pride and, partly due to the area’s relative isolation, have managed to hold onto numerous age-old traditions.

source: Περιφερειακή Ενότητα Χαλκιδικής

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