Greek Guide

 

Skyros Car Hire Greece Greek Rentals

Unless you're a hardened hiker the best way to explore Skyros is with a four wheel drive vehicle which will enable you to uncover secluded coves and follow the rough tracks in the mountainous southern half of the island. You can hire a 4x4 in Skyros Town or rent a motorbike, scooter or bicycle. But if you opt for a scooter make sure your travel insurance covers you for motorbike accidents because many policies don't.

If you hire a standard car you'll be able to do a loop round the paved road which circles the northern part of the island. There's a dirt track leading through the wooded interior of the north linking Skyros Town and Atsitsa on the west coast but it's unsuitable for vehicles. Various other tracks leading inland and seaward from the road can be negotiated with a scooter or 4x4.

The road leading north out of the capital takes you towards the airport at the northern tip of the island. If you turn right after the road begins to descend to the airport you'll come to Palamari where there's a beautiful beach and the archaeological site of an early Bronze Age settlement. The road continues on to the west coast of the island passing the small sandy beaches of Kyra Panagia and Kalogrias before arriving at the lovely pine fringed bay of Atsitsa which has a tranquil pebble beach and an excellent fish taverna.

If you continue on the road south down the coast from Atsitsa you'll come to Agios Fokas where there are three pretty white pebble beaches and a small taverna which serves fresh fish from the owner's boat and home made cheese. But be warned that this five kilometre stretch of road deteriorates into a rough track as you approach Agios Fokas so it can be dangerous on a motorbike.

Access to the wild and rugged southern part of the island, known as Vouno, is through a narrow fertile valley to the south of Ahilli (the east coast bay where Achilles reputedly set sail with Odysseus). A wide dirt road leads through a rocky wilderness dominated by 727 metre Mount Kohylas. If you want to branch off this road, which leads to the southern tip of the island, you'll definitely need a 4x4. The road takes you to the grave of the English poet Rupert Brooke who died in 1915 on a hospital ship anchored off Skyros. Brooke was on his way to fight in the ill fated WW1 Dardanelles campaign. He was buried by torchlight about a mile inland and his gravestone was inscribed with his own famous words: "If I should die think only this of me, that there's some corner of a foreign field that is forever England."

At this end of the island you might be lucky enough to spot one of the Syrian ponies which have been bred exclusively on Skyros since ancient times. They are thought to be the same breed as the horses sculpted from marble on the famous Parthenon frieze.