Skopelos is one of the Northern Sporades islands in the Northwest Aegean Sea, Greece. It is the second largest island, after Skyros, and truly interesting sailing holiday destination in Greece.
Skopelos is hilly and densely wooded island with lush and fertile pine-tree forests, a place where the green prevails!
The capital of the island and the main harbour is Skopelos town (or Chora). It is amphitheatrically built, similarly to Skiathos town, in the heart of the bay with colourful white-washed houses, tiled roofs and small romantic alleys. The capital is also the main shopping and entertainment hub of the island with supermarkets, groceries, cafes, bars and many commercial shops.
Apart from capital’s beauty, Skopelos’ countryside is equally attractive offering privacy and quite lifestyle. Colourful villages such Elios, Klima, Glossa and Agnondas are adding to the rather peaceful life of the main town.
There is enough nightlife in Skopelos island, though not to the extent one can find in Skiathos. There are lots of places, mostly in the capital, with different music styles (jazz, traditional Greek, pop etc), cafes and bars for all tastes. There are also various restaurants and tavernas offering some of the well known dishes of the delicious Mediterranean cuisine.
Skopelos island has lots wonderful beaches and coves and many of them are accessible only by boat! Although dock berths are limited, there are some small quays around where yachtsmen can moor in good weather conditions. Famous beaches in Skopelos island are Limnonari, Stafilos, Milia, Agnondas and Panormos. Other good beaches are Chryssi Milia, Elios or Neo Klima, Kokinokastro, Leftos Gialos, Vothanas, Koutria, Armenopetra, Hovolo, Andrina, Velanio. The bays of Perivolou, Mavraki, Kastri, Vathias and Glysteri, placed N-NE of the island’s centre, are recommended for the charter boats to spend the night only when winds are calm. Last but not least, we should mention some very lovely approaches such as Dasia and Kokinonissi – both exciting to explore and must-include once planning a sailing itinerary in the Sporades islands.
During the summer period, the prevailing wind in Skopelos island is the Meltemi. It blows from NE at force 3-6 beaufort scale and may reach 7 on occasion. During spring and autumn, it usually blows from N (NE-NW) with common S winds as well.
The climate is mild and rainy throughout winters and sunny and warm throughout summers. In general, summers are warm, in August it can get hot but both the meltemi winds and the green scenery provide pleasant atmosphere.
Unfortunately, there is no organised marina in Skopelos island. Charter yachts can moor at the main port for the ferries on the North coast of the island. The most protected place is the Eastern side of the main ferry – harbour, where water and fuel is available on the quay.
Shelter points and small docks in Skopelos island are also found in Glossa port, Stafilos and Agnondas and Panormos Bay.
Numerous little bays and anchorages along the entire coastline of the island are one of the reasons that make Skopelos another sailing paradise in Greece.
Keep in mind: Skiathos port in Skiathos island is our charter base for the Sporades islands.
Mythically, Skopelos island was probably first populated in the Neolithic period and its ancient name was Peparethos. Around 1600 BC, Cretans conquered the island whose leader was Staphylos one of the sons of the god Dionyssos and the Princess Ariadne of Crete. Since then many rulers succeeded to occupy Skopelos such as the Dolopians, the Chalcidians, the Spartians, the Macedonians, the Romans and the Turks. During 2nd Century AD, Ptolemy the Geographer renamed Peparithos as Skopelos, possibly because of the many reefs that bound the island.
Christianity appeared in Skopelos in the 3rd Century AD and spread quickly.
In 1750 the spirit of revolution leads the first Greeks to seek refuge in Skopelos which took part in the Revolution and became part of the liberated New Greek State in 1830.
Precious findings of a tomb (supposed to be Staphylos’ one) have been discovered in 1936.
There are several interesting sites and monuments around Skopelos island. Its main town is undoubtedly wonderful place where visitors can enjoy hikes through the narrow alleys, shopping and entertainment.
Visit: the Folklore Museum, the Kastro, the Monastery of Evagelistria and the Venetian castle of Skopelos.
Watersports activities are offered in some very well organised beaches (Panormos, Milia) and hotels in Skopelos island.
Renting a car, bike or motorbike is available mostly at the main town of Skopelos.