If you ever see a map of Halkidiki and search for Ouranoupoli you will easily understand why they are calling it ”the gates of Mount Athos”.
There are the borders between our wolrd and the monastic one
Table of Contents
Ouranoupoli is located in the South East side of Halkidiki, it’s the last settlement of Greek civilization before the Mount Athos area begins. Some locals call the village ”Pyrgos” because of the big old Byzantine tower which is close to the port and the central square. Pyrgos in greek language means Tower in English.
Here you can find a map where is pointed exactly on the village, you will need it for your GPS’s instructions. Click or tap on it.
By exploring the area from the map you can see that Ouranoupoli is a seaside village and it’s beaches are pointing to the West and to the South. Looking to the West side you can see Ammouliani island. In the South West you can see Sithonia peninsula, and in the South East you can see the Mount Athos peninsula.
The weather conditions in the area are like hot dry summers and mild winters.
From June to September atmosphere’s temperature is high (+-30°C) and the weather is 90% sunny. The sea temperature is like a pool’s, from 22°C to 25°C.
Locals of the area are saying that if the stars are blinking then you have to wait for bad weather conditions.
The history and the ancient sites
We can say that on this land there is a lot of history, but let’s discover what is known until nowadays.
On the location where Ouranoupoli is today, once upon a time there was the ancient city of Sani which destroyed by Phillipos II. In the 315 BC Alexarhos the brother of Kassandros builded a town on the same spot. On some saved local ancient coins, is written the word ”Ouranias Poleos” which somehow in english we can trasnlate it in Sky City or the City of the sky.
Later this area owned by Vatopedi monastery and in the 14th century they built the ”big byzantine tower” which is still there close to the sea. It’s usage was for defensive purposes.
In the 20th century, Greek immigrants came from the coasts of Turkey to restart their lives here. At first they were living around the tower and later in 1926 a German constructive company built the first houses of the village. The locals built the church and the school and the settlement begun it’s history with the name ”Prosforion” later in 1960 the name of the village changed to Ouranoupoli in the memory of the town which Alexarhos built in the 315 BC.
The underwater city
If you ever see an aerial photo between Ouranoupoli village and Drenia islands you can easily see a big open blue colored line like an underwater road. That’s a part of an ancient wall of the ancient town ”Akrothoi” Check the underwater video
The ancient sites
In Ouranoupoli you can visit the old Byzantine tower of 14th century which built at first as a defensive building and later in 1928 the ”Lock” couple settled in it.
Another great ancient site is the Zygos monastery built in the 10th century. The great about it is that it is a visitable monastery by anyone because it is not a part of the Mount Athos area.
Today Ouranoupoli have a population of 960 residents who are engaged mostly with farming, fishing and tourim. Here you can find local wine, tsipouro, ouzo, honey, olives, olive oil, fresh fishes, etc.
Close to the square of Ouranoupoli you can find the central port where the ferries to Mount Athos depart transfering pilgrims, monks and big trucks, you can find tickets and perimissions from the pilgrims office of ouranoupoli. We recommend you to call them and ask for more informations. If you are interested in cruising around the Mount Athos peninsula you can join a daily boat tour.
If you visit the local market place you can find local products created by locals and monks. Somehow you can say that Ouranoupoli is a gastronomy spot, most of the villagers are owning restaurants and tavernas with delicious local and gurmet dishes.
There are plenty of beaches close to the area, a famous destination is the islands Drenia, another must see destination is Komitsa beach and for sure you have to visit Ammouliani island and explore it’s beaches. Another must visit is Banana beach
There are more than 5 big resorts in the area, plenty of hotels and holiday rentals and the ouranoupoli camping. Some of them is the famous Eangles palace, Akti Ouranoupoli, Filoxenia Hotel, Skites bungalow, Theoxenia Hotel, Athos Villas, Xenios Zeus, Sunset Hotel, Akrathos, Aristotelis Hotel and Spa, Archontariki, etc.
The Roadtrip to Ouranoupoli
If you are in Eastern Greece you have to use the Egnatia highway A2 until the exit to Stavros, then you will continue driving to Ouranoupolis using the Greek National road.
If you are or you will pass by Thessaloniki we recommend you to use the west’s side Egnatia highway A2 or the east’s side Polygyrou Greek National Road EO16 – EO16a.
KTEL bus station of Chalkidiki is in the Eastern side of Thessaloniki. There are daily departures from Thessaloniki to Chalkidiki and backwards. check timetables and pricelists.
The must to do in Ouranoupoli list
Athos Sea Cruises team made for you, a ”must to do” list in the area.
- The most famous must to do is the Mount Athos Cruise. A tour to the west side of the peninsula, giving the chance to explore the monasteries with a distance of 500m away from the coast. The monasteries are an UNESCO World heritage sites.
- Another must to do in the area is the Blue Lagoon Cruise. A tour to Sithonia’s great blue and turquise waters like Lagonisi, Diaporos and Vourvourou, combined with a mini Ammouliani island tour.
- You must taste the gastronomy of the area, fresh fishes, local wines, etc. Ouranoupoli is the gastronomy destination of Eastern Halkidiki.
- Visit the old big Byzantine tower from the 14th century and travel back to the history of the village.
- Visit Zygou Monastery which is 2km away and close to the borders.
- Explore the local marketplace where you can find plenty of local products.
- Try some watersports and scuba diving.
- Rent a boat and explore Ammouliani island
You Ask, We Answer.
How can I visit Drenia islands?
There are three different ways you can visit the islands. You can join a tour in the area. You can rent a boat or you can easily go and return any time you want by the small wooden boats which depart very often from the port.
How can I visit Ammouliani island?
You have three options. The first one is by the ferry lines from Tripiti port, which is 5km away from Ouranoupolis, the second one is by joining a tour in the area and the third one is by renting your own boat.
Which is the best restaurant in the area?
The restaurateurs here love what they do and they are something like specialists on it. Our opinion is that you can use a rate platform and your nose.
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This article made by https://lnk.bio/Rodokalakis