Top choice in Skiathos

Perched dramatically on the island's rocky northernmost headland, 9km north of Skiathos Town, Kastro was the fortified pirate-proof capital from 1540 until it was abandoned in 1829. At its peak it held 20 churches and 500 homes; now, among the restored ruins, you'll find an old cannon, a Turkish-era mosque, several water tanks and four churches (including 17th-century Christos, home to several fine frescoes). Drive or walk down the steep sealed track, or join a boat trip from Skiathos Town.

Kastro passed through Byzantine, Venetian and Turkish hands before being deserted in favour of its modern counterpart. The area is a spring mecca for birdwatchers, who may spot long-necked Mediterranean shags or blue rock-thrushes skimming the waves, and there's a small pebble beach below.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Skiathos attractions

1. Kastro Beach

0.18 MILES

A lone summer-only cafe-bar watches over the pretty pebbly grey cove beneath Skiathos' old ruined capital Kastro, at the island's northern end. Plenty of…

2. Lalaria Beach

1.01 MILES

Guarded by sheer cliffs and clear aqua water, this tranquil and striking strand of pale-grey egg-shaped pebbles on Skiathos' isolated northern coast is…

3. Moni Evangelistrias


Centred on a triple-domed church, this historic 18th-century monastery was a hilltop refuge for freedom fighters during the War of Independence, and the…

4. Kehria Beach


Secluded little creamy-white Kehria lies hidden along the north coast down a steep dirt track (4WD recommended), 7km northwest of Skiathos Town. The…

5. Ligaries Beach

2.13 MILES

Backed by a sea of greenery, this golden-white sand-and-pebble north-coast strand has clear aqua water, a respectable taverna and a smattering of sun…

6. Mikros Aselinos Beach

2.73 MILES

With just a handful of sun loungers and a shack-like taverna, tiny and sandy-gold rock-enclosed Mikros Aselinos rests on the northwest coast 2km north of…

7. Megalos Aselinos Beach

3.19 MILES

This long and lovely (though somewhat exposed) stretch of honey-gold sand curled into the northwest coast is a popular stopping spot for day cruises, but…

8. Moni Panagias Kounistras

3.46 MILES

From Troulos, a paved road winds 4km north and inland to the serene, uninhabited 17th-century Moni Panagias Kounistras, well worth seeking out for its…