Island of Samothrace and nature holidays in Greece. Samothraki is not only the winged Victory of Samothrace at the Louvre museum, it’s also a beautifully quiet and green Greek island.
Map of the island of Samothrace: Samothraki in Greek language is an island situated northeast in Greece. The island has an area of 180 km2 and has a population of 3.000 inhabitants. It is a mountainous island with Saos pick at an altitude of meters. Samothrace weather: 30 degrees in summer from June to end of September.
Samothrace vacations in nature: Samothrace is stunningly beautiful with its virgin and wild nature , its rich fauna and flora, its pine forests, its cedar and plane trees touching the sea, its water sources and its perennial falls, its suspended lakes scattered on the steep mountain slopes and its idyllic beaches.
How to get to Samothrace? Having arrived by plane from Thessaloniki, take the car you have rented from Thessaloniki or go to the bus station KTEL to get a ticket for Alexandroupoli (duration 4h and 29 euros per person). Are there every 3 hours). Arrived at Alexandroupoli, take the ferry to Samothrace (Duration 2h30, around 9 Euros/person + 39 euros/car, 1 ferry per day) because there is no airport in Samothrace island. Personally, I took the beautiful and comfortable greek bus for Alexandroupoli and I rented a car on the island at place Kamariotissa.
Hotel Samothrace: I spent my holidays on the island of Samothrace in 2009 with my husband. We did not decided to go to the camping of Samothrace. I had reserved a room in advance at Archondissa Beach Hotel, a hotel in Loutra (Therma) near by the sea with a nice lawn. The room have a small kitchen. Photos below: the hotel on the left and on the right the village square of Therma where I tasted at the culinary specialities of Samothrace: Katsiki yemisti or Stuffed goat with rice, onions, mint and fennel… A dream.
1st day: Rush into the nature of Samothrace with its luxuriant nature, its waterfalls and its gorges and abundant streams. Samothrace becomes paradise for those who love nature (see above photos on the right, below the map of Samothrace). Samothrace is ideal for trekking but also for climbing and then for the gorges crossing (Kremasto eg) in canoe for the somehow most athletes visitors.
« Gria Vathra »: I suggest you a walk with your family or not to the Lake of Gria Vathra, located 2 km west of Therma. In a superb landscape of very old plane trees and ferns, you will discover the waterfalls forming lakes with clean and clear water. You can swim there!
« Βathres tou Fonia » : Next day, follow a path of 4 km to the Lake Fonia, whose entrance is always west of Therma. No need to go rock climbing but wear the sportex anyway. The day will be very pleasant with your children. You can swim there of course!.
2nd day: Discover the history of Samothrace. A few kms from Loutra, visit the independent sanctuary of the Great Gods. It was famous from the 4th BC cent, till the Roman era included for his mystery cult: the participant has an initiatory path to follow : he had to learn each time a little bit more about the secrets of divinity and the afterlife. Many famous people were initiated there: the historian Herodotus, the King of Sparta Lysander and the Macedonian Kings. The cult is mentioned by Aristophanes and Plato. The sanctuary consisted of the Ptolemaion (site plan below no. 20), of the great edifice of worship Arsinoé Rotunda of the 3rd BC (No. 15), of the building of the frieze Temenos (340 BC. JC, no. 14), of the Epopteion (No. 13), of the Anaktoron North of the Arsinoé Rotunda. At the edge of the sanctuary, there was the famous sculpture of the Victory of Samothrace (2nd cent.BC) with its splendid wings. It has been adorning the Louvre Museum in Paris since 1864.
3rd day: visit Chora, the capital of the island. Chora (1 photo on the top, on the right) is located 5 kms east of the port (Kamariotissa). This village is built in amphitheater on the mountainside 300 meters above the sea level. He was protected from the winds and the raids of pirates. In Chora, you will see the Byzantine castle built in the 10 sc AD. From that period, it was acquired by the Genoese from Gattilusi island. In 1456, Samothrace is under the Ottomans’ thumb. The two-storey houses of a typical traditional architecture are absolutely beautiful. You will also find the Folk Museum (photo below right) near the Kimissi tis Theotokou Church (in english Dormition of the Mother of God)
4th day: on the beaches of Samothrace, enjoy the Aegean sea with its turquoise waters and the sun:
Pachia Ammos beach. It is the unique sandy beach of Samothrace. It is located south of the island and it is overhung with beautiful olive trees.
5th day: Kipi beach with its dark colored pebbles at the very east of the island. Following the beautiful coast of Therma. I was also amazed by this steep mountain overlooking the beach (photo above right)
My experience: In a total of five days, I think having seen the most accessible places for me in the island (trekking, ballads in car) because personally I am not a climbing fan. What struck me the most is this green nature in the island: Plane tree is the tree I’ve seen everywhere on the island, shading me as soon as I was starting to get warm. A boat ride is a must as you will see all this island with its great waterfalls… The people are very friendly, especially when we’re interested in their life… By this way, I was able to taste the culinary specialities of the island. I will return for sure in this island that has really invigorated my body and my mind.
Have you ever been to Samothrace island ? Well, it is time to go !