Greek Guide

 

Samothraki Car Hire Greece Greek Rentals

Daily buses run from Samothraki's port, Kamariotissa, to all the main places of interest around the island during the summer months. But you might prefer to hire your own transport so you can explore the island at your leisure. Cars, jeeps, motorbikes and bicycles are all available for hire in Kamariotissa though you'll find prices are higher here than on many of the more popular Greek islands. Rental vehicles are in short supply in July and August so it's a good idea to make an advance booking.

Hiring a motorbike is a fun way to explore many islands but Samothraki's roads are often buffeted by strong winds so a car is a safer option. With the benefit of your own transport you'll be able to visit the island's unspoilt inland villages, take in a day trip to the Sanctuary of the Great Gods and follow the north coast road over to the eastern end of the island.

The road inland from Kamariotissa leads to the island's capital, Hora, nestling in a pine clad hollow on the rocky western slopes of Mount Fengari. Make the effort to visit the town because it's a charming concoction of cobbled streets and tile roofed stone houses, dominated by the ruins of a Genoese castle. There are no tourist trappings here but you can enjoy a hearty meal in one of two good tavernas in the central square and visit the local folklore museum which houses an interesting collection of traditional island costumes and various domestic paraphernalia from a bygone age. Entrance to the museum and the castle site is free. Little remains of the castle except for a gateway but the sweeping views down to the port make a visit worthwhile.

The road south from Hora leads to four small and totally unspoilt villages which are all worth a visit if you're after a flavour of the "real" Greece. A decent asphalt road connects the villages of Alonia, Xiropotamos, Lakoma and Profitis Ilias. There are several good tavernas in Profitis Ilias which is a pretty hillside settlement with an abundance of natural mountain springs. This is the best place to sample the island's trademark meal of roast kid.

An eight kilometre winding road south east from Lakoma leads to the island's best beach, Pahia Ammos.

You'll definitely want to visit Samothraki's top attraction the soul stirring Sanctuary of the Great Gods near the village of Paleopoli six kilometres north east of Kamariotissa. The sanctuary ruins lie in a magical setting in a densely wooded gorge between the sea and the north western ridge of towering Mount Fengari. Allow several hours to visit the archaeological museum and explore the extensive ruins of the sanctuary where secret rites, sacrifices and initiation ceremonies were held 3,000 years ago.

The northern coastal road continues on to the island's other major attraction the therapeutic hot springs at Loutra. Continue east along the coast to Cape Fonias from where there's a wonderful 45 minute walk inland culminating in a deep pool fed by a 12 metre waterfall.