The Island of Thassos is a real treasure for the country of Greece. Unlike the rest of the Greek islands, the Island of Thassos has much more to offer than just beautiful beaches and water. It truly retains all the Greek culture and tradition that has generally been lost on most of the Greek Islands, as they have become tourist centers that now cater to the many tourists of multi nationalities. Thassos also has a rich history and archeological sites scattered through out the island. You can combine amusement with archaeological interests. Kavala was a colony of the Thassians. On the island one can still see monuments remaining since its glorious days from the past, such as the walls of the fortress of the ancient city, the temple of Pythian Apollo and the sanctuary of Dionysos with its choragic monument. An important reason for choosing Thassos for your holidays is the fact that it is the only island that lies close enough to mainland Greece to allow you to take excursions to many other archeological sites and beautiful cities that are spread throughout Northern Greece (Macedonia).
Thassos is the most northern island of the Aegean Sea, lying almost 7 kilometres, or a little over 4 miles distance opposite of the coastline of Eastern Macedonia, very close to the Keramoti Bay and the estuary of the Nestos River.
Thassos' total size is approximately 393 km² and has a population of over 13,000 people. It is a province of the prefecture of Kavala, comprising, in terms of administration, 1 municipality (Municipality of Thassos) and 9 communities.
Thassos is mountainous as well as rocky, and is covered by thick forests of pine trees, fir trees, oak trees and plane trees while olive groves thrive all along its coastline. Its forests once covered about 9\10 of the island’s surface until the major fires that occured in the late 1980's that devastated vast areas on the South side as well as inland. The northeastern parts of the island fortunately escaped these fire and remain lush and green as it has been through the age. The devastating effects of the fire can be seen on mainly southern parts of the island although regrowth can also be seen in many of those places.
A mountain ridge formed along the NWSE direction crosses the island. Mount Ipsario, 1,208 m, being its highest summit. Next to it, the summit of Prophet Elias (1.108 m high), Phanos (744 m high) and Tsoutoula follow in rank. The shape of the island is almost circular, while its maximum width from West to South is as 22 km and the corresponding one from West to South is as large as 26 km. Its perimeter is 98 km. A road encircles the entire island's coast.
Thassos is 24 kilometers (12 nautical miles) away from Kavala, 50 kilometers (12 nautical miles) away from the Holy Mountain, 111 kilometers (60 nautical miles) from the island of Lemnos and 60 kilometers (32,5 nautical miles) away from Alexandroupolis. Its coastline is mostly rocky eastwards and westwards and sandy Northwards and Southwards. There are many ports, harbors and bays along the coast. These include:
The harbor of the ancient capital of Thassos (in Limenas, otherwise called Thassos Town), the Skala Rachoni port of call in the North, the bay of Skala Prinos in the Northwest, the Sotiros, Kallirachi and Maries ports of call in the West, the Limenaria, Rosogremmos and Astris bays in the South, the bays of Kinira, Panagia, Potamia, and Agios Ioannis in the East and the bay of Alyki in the Southeast. The major capes of the island to the North are: Evreokastro, Pachis, Archangellos. To the West, there are the capes of Prinos, Atspas, and Kefalas. To the South are: Agios Antonios (Chochlos), Oxia, Salonikios (Sapouni), Kalami, Demir, Chalka, Babouras, and finally, the capes of: Stavros, Fourni, Pyrgos, and Kalogeros (Vathi) are located southwards.
A short distance away from Thassos, towards its Northern and Eastern coasts, there are small islands of interest. Northbound, and in between Thassos and Keramoti Bay, there is a rocky and uninhabited island, 1 mile long and its altitude reaches 355 feet. The island of Grambousa is located in the eastern part of Thassos, 25 m away from the shore, at the Southern end of the Potamia Bay. Opposite of the ancient town of Kinira and 1,285 m away from the coast, is the islet that is also named Kinira lying in the middle of the bay. The islet Diapori is found at a distance of 25 m away from the shore in the same area, a little further South. Finally, the islet of Panagia, near Astris, contains a cave from which interior carbonic acid vapors flow out from. This islet is located off the southern coast across from Cape Salonikios.
Thassos is the most fertile island in the Aegean Sea. It produces cereals, legumes, fruit, honey and wine. In the coastal areas olives are cultivated.
The wine of Thassos, the famous Thassian wine of antiquity, is regarded highly, even today, and is ranked among the best wines of Greece. The ancient queen of Egypt, Cleopatra, sent ships every year to take the Thassian wine to Egypt. It was said that the ancient gods of Mount Olympus would only drink the wines from Thassos. The grapes of Thassos are also bought by many wine producers throughout Greece and used for blending in their wines.
Thassos also has it's own good drinking water on the island. Water does not have to be brought to the island like the other Greek Islands and there are no water usage restrictions either.
Thassos has an abundant supply of minerals. Copper in the districts of Astris, Thimonia and Theologos; lead, silver and zinc in Limenaria; iron in the district of Kallirachi. The famous mines of Thassos, as well as the famous shipbuilding timber gave rise to the brilliant development, glamour and progress during antiquity. Even more, it is maintained that it was this wealth that attracted the Phoenicians, who were to be the first inhabitants of Thassos. The marble quarries of Thassos have always been famous. The snow white marble of Thassos was famous during antiquity and remains so even today, as it is suitable for the construction of statues as well as majestic mansions. Thassian marble was used during the times of the Byzantine Empire for the erection of Saint Sofia’s church in Constantinople.
The island's capital today, Thassos Town (Limenas), is located on the embanked area of the ancient capital, which was called Thassos. The construction of Limenas started in the middle of the 19th century by inhabitants of the neighboring village of Panagia as well as of other villages. These villages would move gradually to the coasts. One of the greatest and most significant villages on Thassos is Theologos. It is located in a ravine opposite of the Mountain Korfi, in the northeastern part of the island. West of Theologos, is the village of Kastro. The inhabitants of Kastro on the Southwestern Coast built the town of Limenaria in 1900 BC when a systematic exploitation of mines started there. Numerous refugees, who had fled Asia Minor and Thrace after 1922, settled in the two seaside centers of Thassos, greatly contributing to its progress and development.Sea
Thassos’ beauties are reflected in the crystal-clear waters that wash its shores. Environmental pollution is unknown here. Everything remains in a pristine state.Beaches
Thassos has more beaches than any of the other Greek Islands. Many of the beaches have trees coming all the way down to the beach. Apart from the developed complex on Makryammos beach and several campsites, there are fine, spotlessly clean beaches all along the island’s coastline. Among them is the longest beach on the island, Golden Beach, or Chryssi Ammoudia in Skala Panagia and Chryssi Akti in Skala Potamia. There are many incredible beaches in and outside Kinira, Paradise Beach being just 2 km. away. Some more beaches that can be easilly found are Thimonia, Alyki, Psili Ammos, Astris, Potos, Pefkari, Limenaria, Tripiti, Atspas in Skala Maries, Skala Kallirachi, Skala Sotiros, Akti Alsiliou in Skala Prinos, Skala Rachoni, Pachis Beach, Papa Limani, Glifada, Akti Agiou Vassiliou in Thassos Town (Limenas), and the beach near the settlement on the east side of Limenas. Other beaches include Nisteri and Glikadi, located 2-3 km. from Limenas.