Thassos lies off the north-east coast of Greece in the north-Aegean island group that includes Lemnos, Chios and Lesvos. Although Thassos doesn't have an airport, it is still one of the most accessible Greek islands, close to a major mainland airport of Kavala and having a regular daily car ferry service to the island throughout the year.
The airport at Thessaloniki is also only about two hours drive away, and there are more ferries from the port of Kavala and at Keramouti where daily sailings depart every 20 minutes or so. Thassos well linked to the mainland road network so many Europeans drive there.
The Thassos island road network is also good with a coastal road that goes all the way around this circular island.
Holiday accommodation is plentiful all over Thassos but the most choice is in Thassos Town and the more extensive holiday resorts like Limenaria and Skala Potamis.
Thassos has no airport, so most visitors fly to nearby Kavala Airport, also called Megos Alexandros at Chrissoupoli or to Thessaloniki Airport, and make their way by road and ferry.
The airport at Chrissoupoli is about 30 km east of Kavala and it's a straight 11-kilometre road trip to the port at Keramoti and then a 40-minute ferry to the port resort of Limenas on Thassos.
Kavala Airport, or Alexander the Great, handles about two million visitors each year, has nine check-in desks, six gates and two baggage claim belts
There are some short-term parking spaces and 160 long-term spaces. Taxis outside Kavala will get you to Keramouti in about 15 minutes. A bus service from Chrisoupoli to Keramoti leaves every two hours, and there is an hourly service to Kavala bus station for more connections. Details are on the KTEL Kavala website.
At Kavala (about 30 kilometres) is a ferry port and visitors can catch a ferry or hydrofoil to Limenas or the Thassos west coast port of Skala Prinos.
The airport at Thessaloniki, Macedonia International Airport, is the second largest in Greece and has many flights and charters daily from Athens and other European cities. Cheap flights to Thessaloniki are often easy to find. From Thessaloniki, it is a two-hour road journey to the ferry at Keramoti or there is a bus #78 to Kavala.
Both EasyJet and BA have flights from London Gatwick to Thessaloniki and Thomson has flights to Kavala.
Thassos is well served by regular car ferry shuttles to the mainland at Keramoti and also to Kavala. The Keramoti ferries leave for Thassos Town every two hours or so and it takes about 40 minutes to reach the main port at Limenas, passing the uninhabited islet of Thassopoulou on the way.
About six ferries run by Aneth Lines leave each day from 5.45am from Thassos until 9 pm from Keramouti. Book online or pick up ferry tickets at the booth at Keramouti. The company also runs three ferries daily from Kavala.
Thassos Ferries also runs services from Keramouti to Limenas and between Kavala and Skala Prinos.
About six ferries a day leave Kavala for Thassos and they take about 95 minutes with similar schedules for the return trip. Two ferries a day leave from April to October with three a day in August.
To head for other islands in this part of the Aegean, you must first get a ferry to Kavala and then find a connection from there. Island hopping in this part of the Greek islands is very restricted.
On Thassos itself, boat trips can are on offer in Limenas harbour. They usually make daily taxi boat trips to Makryammos beach and Chrissi Ammoudia (Golden Beach). There are also round island trips, stopping off at remote beaches, that leave Limenas at 9.45am on Wednesday and Sunday.
Thassos island has a single circular road around the coast, well maintained and with good signposting, so driving on Thassos is pretty good. At around 95-100 km for a complete circuit, all the beaches are within daily reach.
The coast road is flat in the north-west, passing through farmland. It is somewhat more hilly and forested in the north-east, especially when it cuts inland to Panagia. In the south, it's relatively flat.
A good map is recommended if you head inland as many mountain tracks are not signposted from the main roads.
Daily buses serve all the coastal villages and some of the inland ones too. Coastal buses travel both clockwise and anticlockwise around Thassos with buses heading west out of Limenas slightly more frequent.
Buses heading west from Limenas to Limenaria have detours inland to Theologos and, in the east, to Panagia and Potamia. There are eight buses a day, Monday to Saturday from Limenas to Limenaria and six buses daily on Sundays. Thassos bus schedules are usually posted online.
Taxis are plentiful during the day but are difficult to find at night especially outside Limenas. You can wait hours to get a taxi back to Limenas from, say, Potamia. Make prior arrangements with the driver to pick up at night.
There are many pleasant walks to be found on Thassos, particularly in the hills around Panagia and Potamis.
There is a small booklet Walking On Thassos by Rose Gruwel and Truus Van De Mast available from Jayne's Leather Shop in Limenas. Another good book to look out for is Walks in Northeast Thasosby Lance Clinton. As well as walking trails there are jeep and mountain bike trails too.
There is plenty of reasonable holiday accommodation all over Thassos but the most choice is in Thassos Town and the more extensive holiday resorts such as Limenaria and Skala Potamis. Many inland villages and coastal resorts have rooms to rent but often close down between October and May. Big hotels can get block-booked months in advance by the tour operators. Small hotels and rooms to rent are available in the hill village of Panagia and nearby Chryssi Ammoudia (Golden Beach).
Thassos is particularly good for camping. The site at Camping Golden Beach is one of six dotted around the coast but the only campsite on the east side of Thassos. Other sites are at Camping Pefkari, Camping Dasslio, Prinos Camping (071170) at Skala Prinos and Daedalos Camping (058251) at Skala Sotiros.
Families could opt for a cabin at the Makryammos Bungalows holiday resort, about two kilometres east of Limenas. The complex has 198 bungalows and ten luxury suites set in 30 acres of landscaped gardens overlooking Makryammos Bay. Sports and recreation activities include Greek language and cookery courses and there is a child pool, playground and miniature zoo.
Thassos lies about eight kilometres off the Macedonia mainland in the Gulf of Kavala. It has an area of approximately 390 sq km and is roughly 22 kilometres by 26 kilometres with a coastline of about 75 kilometres.
Thassos is mountainous with the highest peaks at Ipsarion (1,127 metres) and Profitis Ilias (1,108 metres). Much of the northern coast is steep rock cliffs, while the south is relatively flat.
The north has abundant vegetation, with forests, olive groves and vineyards fed by underground springs. The south is mostly covered by pine forest, oak trees, and planes.
Thassos is also rich in minerals with lead and silver in the Limenaria area, copper around Astris, iron at Kalirachi and snow-white marble, for which Thassos island is famous, found around Limenas.
Thassos is the most northerly of the Greek holiday islands, so its climate is cooler than most others especially at night. On the other hand, Thassos is more sheltered from the prevailing northerly winds so it can feel quite humid.
The season starts in May with lots of sunshine but occasional rain. Showers can be heavy but are usually brief. Temperatures average 27°C in July and August then ease off to 25° in September. Unlike other Greek islands, Thassos is not swept by sea breezes and sea temperatures hover around 20°C.
Winter in Thassos is milder than on most Greek islands. Averages of 8-9°C are typical with afternoons often rainy. November has warm days and by April the temperatures are rising and the island is covered in wildflowers.
|Size||390 sq km|
|Season||May – Oct|
|Time (GMT)||+2 hrs|
|Coast Guard||Dial 191|
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