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Samothrace is one of the small islands with big perspectives. Thermal springs, amazing views, rich flora, waterfalls, and interesting sights await you on this beautiful island of the northern Aegean. The municipality of Samothrace belongs to the wider area of Evros in Thrace. Although the island has no airport, it is reachable by ferry from either Kavala or Alexandroupolis and its main port is Kamariotissa. As the legend wants it, Mount Saos in Samothrace, was the place where Poseidon was sitting to watch Troy getting destroyed.
#What to do
Chora as in many islands is the captivating center of the island. The village spreads along the slope of Mount Feggari (Moon) and it goes without saying that the view from all parts of the village is breathtaking. The houses are cramped but this is not an obstacle for the bright sun to come through and brighten up the small narrow stone streets that adorn the picturesque architecture. Additionally, you will find young artists playing music on the streets which can accompany you along with a fabulous sunset. You can also enjoy a nice dish of stuffed lamb along with some ouzo or tsipouro in one of the small taverns and traditional restaurants of the area.
On the island, you can explore the mountainous landscape and luscious nature while enjoying many activities such as mountain trekking, biking, paragliding, rafting, kayak and more. The village is in itself a place for exploration and you can wander through the various small villages and discover many hidden secrets of the island.
The most impressive feature of the island is its sulfurous thermal springs in the settlement of Therma (also known as Loutra). The settlement of Therma is 12 km away from Chora. The settlement is adorned with waterfalls that fall gracefully and form small ponds surrounded by an exotic landscape. There are also campsites around the area, suitable for ages. On top of enjoying a bath in the springs and the fresh air of nature, you can also take the ferry to the other beaches of the island which are not reachable by any other means of transport. Apart from just reaching another part of the island to merely swim, visiting nearby beaches will offer you the chance to explore many steep slopes and secret coves.
#What to see
Samothrace also boasts an interesting history and cultural background. The famous Nike of Samothrace which is currently situated in the Louvre Museum is one of the most important monuments found on the island by a French amateur archaeologist in 1863. This sculpture masterpiece of the Hellenistic Era has been used as the prototype for Rolls Royce’s hood.
The Sanctuary of the Gods is also a very important historical monument. The Samothrace Temple Complex is situated on the western side of the island and it is one of the Pan-Hellenic sanctuaries. As many other sanctuaries during Antiquity, it was used as a place to celebrate religious practices, this time: the Eleusinian Mysteries. Many important people have been leading figures in this practice, including Herodotus, Lysander and more.
While in Chora, you can also visit the Medieval Castle of the Gateluzi family (1431-1433) whose towers stand on a hill with a view to the sea.
#Where to swim
When it comes to the beaches of Samothrace, Kipos, Pahia Ammos and Vatos rank among the best.
Pahia Ammos is found between two huge rocks and is the island’s main “attraction”. You can reach the beach from Kamariotissa after a long nice walk and it also features a tavern where you can enjoy a nice meal after your swim.
Kipos is a majestic beach on the foot of the hill with slightly pebbled sand. The water is crystal clear and the beach is quite secluded, thus making you feel relaxed away from stress.
Vatos beach is only accessible with a boat from Pahia Ammos. It is a gulf-like beach surrounded by rocks with golden sand and turquoise waters. The famous waterfall of Kremastos also falls into the sea eastern from the beach, which is certainly a majestic view to behold.