Southeast of the city of Thessaloniki, lies the Halkidiki peninsula, birthplace of the famous Aristotle. Halkidiki is a rural fist striking out into the north Aegean Sea. It has three peninsulas, which are called Cassandra, Sithonia and Mt. Athos.
As always in Greece, mythology and history mix in Halkidiki. It is in Halkidiki that the battle between the giants and the Olympian gods took place. Here in the west part of Halkidiki, the ancient site of Flegra (Pallini) Egelados, the earthquake giant, is buried. It is also here that Athos has been reformed by the rock that giant Athos threw against the Gods. Even Sithonia is named after Poseidon's sun Sithon.
Archaeological finds give proof of organized settlements in Halkidiki since the Neolithic period (5000 BC). The findings were revealed in the
Petralona cave, which is considered the most important in Europe. The capital of Halkidiki is Poligiros, which is situated in the center of the peninsula, 69 kilometers from Thessaloniki. There are many interesting villages in Halkidiki, an outstanding beauty and the best and more beautiful beaches of the entire country, famous for their crystalline waters and pure white sand. Halkidiki's particular shape reminds of three fingers pointing the Aegean Sea or Poseidon's trident. Of the three "fingers" of the peninsula, only Sithonia and Cassandra are welcoming tourism with incredible natural beauty and developed touristy facilities. The Cassandra is ideal for all-night party and bustling beaches; Sithonia is the perfect place for nature lovers, quietness and deserted beaches.
Access to all three Halkidiki fingers is usually via Thessaloniki, an hour or three by bus on good roads, depending on the destination. Cassandra is the easiest to get to and around, and has suffered package resort development overload as a consequence.
Sithonia is the prettier, little developed finger with its quiet roads winding past glimpses of tiny, perfect turquoise bays, endless pine trees and clusters of beehives.
The last Halkidiki finger, Athos with the lower part a partly self-governing peninsular of 20 monasteries where there are no hotels, all females except hens are prohibited and only 10 male foreigners a day can get permits to enter. The upper western part of Athos has some good beaches that have unfortunately been terminally infected by that loathsome disease - packagus resortia. Mount Athos, at over 2,000m high is clearly visible from much of Sithonia.
There's a large section of hotels and accommodations in Halkidiki. You can also find a large choice of Halkidiki apartments. The apartments of
Halkidiki are organized by category, by prices, by location, alphabetically, by logo facilities and by villages and beach resorts. An quick search tool is also available in order to find apartments with different criteria of you choice.
The peninsula of Halkidiki is a real paradise, endowed by nature with enchanting coves and bays, rocky headlands, beaches with golden sand and crystalline waters; olive and pine forest. Holidays in Halkidiki are ideal for everyone, with quietness and deserted beaches on Sithonia and
full of nightlife on Cassandra.