Listen to Jazz at Platanos
Whether it’s for a mid-morning coffee, an aperitif before dinner and a night of drinks – Platanos Jazz bar by the harbour is my favourite spot. Sitting under ancient platanus trees facing the Aegean sea and listening to subtle jazz music on a mix match of antique furniture. It’s one of those places that is a little off the main tourist track but still in a central location, with a good mix of locals and foreigners. You can easily spend an entire day here, watching harbour life go by. As a avid jazz fan, definitely my favourite spot.
Hike the Retsina Trail
Hiking was a bit of a challenge in Skopelos as a lot of the maps and guide books were out of date, and a lot of the trails have been lost due to bad weather. If you want to experience good hiking conditions, I’d recommend the beginning of the season after the trails have just been cleared. We managed to find the Retsina trail, which is the ancient cobbled path from the east to the west coast, where in older times the retsina traders carried the tree sap from harbour to harbour. You will have to go through quite thick undergrowth from time to time so nothing for the pavement-hikers. However, the breathtaking views are worth every scratch. One guide book to recommend is the one by Heather Parsons.
Find a hidden beach
One thing we found about Skopelos beaches is that they are small…. Small and over-crowded, not necessarily just with tourists but local holiday makers as well. But there are lots and lots of hidden coves and little beaches, so if you have a car, drive off the beaten track and you can find the most extraordinary secluded beaches. Mostly all to yourself. Our tip: Παραλία Αρμενόπετρας – drive past the little blue chapel (the path get very narrow but doable with a car,) and you’ll find the most beautiful little beach all to yourself.
Get lost in the cobbled streets
I loved just walking through the town of Skopelos, aimlessly taking a left here and a right there, discovering something new and beautiful around every corner. The town has been kept in extraordinary condition, you can really tell how proud the locals are of their little harbour next. I greatly enjoyed taking a hours walking every morning with my camera, find little hidden gems and great photo shots to take home as everlasting memories of this magical place.
Cook local food
Skopelos is a little bit more expensive when it comes to eating out than some of the other Greek islands we’ve been to, although the food quality is outstanding. I enjoy cooking when on holidays, to really get to grips with the local flavours and ingredients. There is nothing more special than cooking your own lunch from locally sourced food and enjoy it on your terrace facing the sea. Pure bliss.