Skiathos: The Boomerang Island

29 July, 2021|Destinations, Europe, Greece|
Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

Mikros Aselinos Beach

The scent of pine trees, beautiful beaches, laidback cocktail bars and cobbled streets, this little island truly has it all. It’s no wonder that Skiathos is known as the boomerang island; those who discover what it has to offer they just keep coming back! The island is part of the Sporades group of islands in the North West Aegean Sea.

Skiathos is perfect if:

· You want a taste of Greece with the convenience that comes with a package holiday destination. Skiathos is a direct flight from several UK airports and the small size of the island means you can be on the beach or at a bar within an hour after landing.

· You want to relax and let your hair down

· You want somewhere with a bit of style that also doesn’t take itself too seriously

· You love good food

· You like the friendly-but-always-laidback culture in Greece

My top recommendations for Skiathos 

Skiathos Town

An absolute must-do in Skiathos is to wander down Papadiamantis Street; this is a long street from the main road to the harbour. There are lots of shops and restaurants to choose from here and its easy to spend a morning or afternoon hanging around the town and going for a coffee or drink in one of the many local bars.

If you love accessories then check out Ammos by Kitty boutique, who stock the most beautiful creations that are perfect for summer. The boutique is also located on a pretty street near the harbour which is very Instagram-able!

Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

Outside Ammos by Kitty


There are so many restaurants in Skiathos, it would really be impossible to list all of the best ones. Having spent a lot of time on the island, I can honestly say the food has been amazing 99% of the time. My particular favourites are:

Taverna Anatoli – this is away from Skiathos town in Kalyvia but totally worth the effort of driving up the hill if you hire a car, or in a taxi it will be less than 10 minutes from town. They serve a small menu of traditional home cooked Greek food. The food is fresh, delicious and perfectly cooked. The setting is quiet and beautiful, and away from the hustle and bustle of the town.

Mouria Taverna  – another traditional Greek garden restaurant but this time in the heart of Skiathos town. The food is home cooked and with good portions, and the service is warm and friendly.

If you fancy a change from Greek food and are looking for somewhere more upmarket I’d recommend Ricchi e Poveri . This place serves the most delicious Mediterranean Tapas, has a fab wine menu and amazing views over the old port. It’s the perfect place to enjoy dinner with a beautiful view as the sun goes down. I would strongly recommend booking here in advance to get one of the balcony tables with a view.

Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

View from Ricchi e Poveri

A few steps up the hill from Ricci e Poveri, you will find Taverna Anemos. This is a family run restaurant that has spectacular views from the main restaurant and also has a roof terrace one floor up. Again the food here is delicious, traditional and very reasonably priced, and the service is warm and friendly.

Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

Taverna Anemos

My final restaurant recommendation is for the Bourtzi café which is on the small peninsula between the old port and the new port. This place has great views back towards town and is extremely cool! They have a good selection of drinks and a small food menu, which is always high quality. It is the perfect place for drinks before dinner!

Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

View from the Bourtzi cafe

Sights and activities

One of my favourite trips in Skiathos is the sunset boat trip to Tsougria, a small uninhabited island a couple of miles away. In the summer months there are daily boat trips from the old harbour to allow visitors to enjoy the beautiful beach away from the hustle and bustle of town. There is also an evening trip which takes place once a week, and provides the perfect opportunity to watch the sunset over the water. On evenings when the trip takes place the beach bar is open and serves a small food and drink menu. My top tip would be to take your own snacks and drinks and enjoy a bottle of fizz on a quiet corner of the beach while the sun goes down!

Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

Sunset from Tsougria island

My second sunset recommendation is Eleni beach on the West of the Island. This is a really beautiful place to watch the sun go down, and in my opinion rivals the sunsets in Santorini and Mykonos! Again there is a beach bar here that serves reasonably priced drinks, with none of the table surcharges that you might find in other famous sunset destinations!

Whilst Skiathos does have an excellent bus service, it is well worth hiring a car for one or two days to visit some of the sights that are not accessible by bus. A must see is the Evangelistria Monestary on the North of the Island. It is free to enter the grounds and there is a small fee to enter the museum where you will find the loom on which the first Greek flag was created. There is also a gift shop which stocks local produce and even some items made by the monastery itself.

Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

View within the monastery grounds

Another important sight to see if you hire a car is the Kastro, the medieval castle of Skiathos on the North coast. This was built in the 14th century to protect the inhabitants of Skiathos from pirates. As would have been the intent when it was built, the Kastro is fairly inaccessible! So a 4×4 is best to navigate the bumpy ‘road‘ that leads there. The site is interesting to explore with many of the functions of the rooms and buildings still easily identifiable. The views over the rocky coast and sea are also pretty spectacular!

Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

Flag at Kastro

A newer addition to the list of activities is Parissis Winery which opened its doors in 2019 and is situated up in the hills near the Panaroma restaurant. Here you can try 6 small glasses (75ml) of the wines produced, with a selection of cheeses. This was definitely a nice way to spend a couple of hours in the afternoon and the wines were delicious and all very different!

Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

Tasting at Parissis Winery

The most famous and popular beach on Skiathos is Koukounaries with its soft, white sand and crystal-clear waters. Unusually the beach is lined by pine trees which just add to its unique beauty. There are plenty of sunbeds and a number of beach bars in the summer months, and facilities such as toilets and showers.

Unsurprisingly it can get very busy in the peak season. Koukanaries can be reached by boat taxi from Skiathos town old harbour, or is the last stop on the bus service from town. There is also a large car park.

Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

Koukounaries beach

Last but not least:

If you’re feeling hedonistic – go for some delicious cocktails on the old port!

If you want a sense of accomplishment – climb the steps to the Agios Nikolaos Church and Clocktower. From the top you can see a panoramic view of the town and harbour.

Reasons to feel optimistic – There are two fantastic animal charities on the island that have had an enormous impact on the health of the cats and dogs in recent years:

Skiathos Dog Welfare Association Situated right up in the hills of Skiathos, the dog shelter has looked after the health of stray dogs on the island since 1995 and has a focus on rehoming. It is possible to walk the dogs at the dog shelter from 9.30-12.30 each morning, which can be a really rewarding experience. My tip would be to try and get there as early as possible as it can get very busy even outside of peak season.

Skiathos Cat Welfare Association is a charity very close to my heart having seen the improvement in the health of the street cats even in the 5 years since I have been visiting Skiathos. There has been a strong focus on neutering and rehoming in recent years which has had the desired result and the cats that remain are much healthier.

Skiathos: The Boomerang Island The Travel Psychologist

Healthy, neutered cats in the streets of town

Please note our destination guides contain personal recommendations and not professional advice

If you liked this post check out my previous article What are the psychological benefits of travel?