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Guide To Skiing In Greece – Where To Go And What To Expect
When thinking about a holiday in Greece, the most common image that comes to our minds are the pristine beaches scattered along the endless kilometers of coasts of the Greek Islands. Small whitewashed villages, blue-domed chapels by the sea, and clear summer skies. However, Greece is an all-year destination, and wintertime can be a great moment to enjoy a different aspect of the country.
With a predominantly mountainous landscape, and plenty of hills and slopes, Greece can see quite a lot of snow during winter; as a result, the country is home to a myriad of ski resorts to choose from if what you want is a different and yet traditional winter vacation. In this article, we tell you everything about where to go in Greece to test your skiing skills in the country.
What To Expect From A Ski Holiday In Greece
Contrary to what you might expect, some of Greece’s most important ski centers can be really popular and therefore fully booked during the cold season, especially well-known places such as Parnassos.
Christmas Holidays here are a favorite among the locals who are used to visiting the ski center during the weekend.
On the other hand, there are lesser-known ski centers scattered around the country that can be more convenient to visit as there are fewer crowds on the slopes while accommodation prices are more affordable.
Another important thing to remember is that travelers can rent all the necessary equipment at the ski resorts, making it easier to travel light, even during winter.
Best Ski Resorts In Greece
In no particular order, these are some of the best Greece ski resorts you can visit in Greece during your winter vacation.
Open from December to May, Parnassos Ski Center is Greece’s most popular ski destination. It is conveniently close to Athens (about two hours) and quite close to the beautiful archaeological site of Delphi.
Featuring two peaks, Kellaria (1750 m) and Fterolakas (1950 m), the center features 13 lifts to 19 ski runs plus three runs for beginners, seven ski routes, and ten trail.
Often portrayed as the best-organized ski destination in the country, people enjoy the comfort of the two cafe-chalets, ski and snowboard schools, dedicated stores for equipment rental, and special activities devoted to kids, making it a great family winter destination.
Parnassos For Kids
Gerondovrachos is another popular area in Parnassos, relatively smaller than the centers at the other peaks. It features three lifts, one for children, as well as four downhill runs.
Where To Stay In Parnassos
Fedriades Delphi Hotel
If you are also visiting Delphi during your trip, it is a good idea to check Fedriades Delphi Hotel.
Domotel Anemolia Mountain Resort
Otherwise, the best choice is to stay in Arachova, one of the highest towns in Greece with picturesque countryside roads and dreamy winery landscapes.
Domotel Anemolia Mountain Resort is an affordable 4-star venue in Arachova featuring cozy wooden interiors and a fantastic indoor heated pool.
Kalavryta is another convenient ski resort in Greece as it is located about 2.5 hours from the capital of Greece. Kalavryta Ski Center can be found on Mount Helmos (2340 m) in the Peloponnese region, and it is considered the second largest ski resort in the country.
The center features 12 slopes with varying difficulty (including two difficult slopes, two intermediate ones, and eight easy ones). There are seven ski lifts and particular areas devoted to snowboarding and extreme sports. Visitors can enjoy cafés, restaurants, ski equipment shops, and a ski school in the resort.
Where To Stay In Kalavryta
Filoxenia Hotel & Spa
You can choose to stay in Kalavryta town, an enchanting village that fascinates adults and children alike with its small train that climbs the mountain to reach the railway station in Kalavryta. The village has excellent restaurants, shops, luxurious resorts, and family hotels.
Filoxenia Hotel & Spa is a very convenient place to stay in the area, near the central square of the old town.
Styga Mountain Resort
Staying outside of town is also an option. Located only 14 kilometers from Kalavryta, Styga Mountain Resort is an excellent mountainside resort offering outstanding value for money.
Menalon (Mount Mainalos)
Located in Arkadia, Peloponnese, this ski center features four lifts reaching eight diverse slopes for your winter adventures. There is a local ski school and shops to rent or purchase snowboard and ski equipment.
Standing on Mount Mainalos (1600 m), the resort features a beautiful chalet with a guesthouse, a restaurant, and different cafeterias. Mount Mainalos Ski Center is open from early January until March, and it is a good destination from Athens both for a day trip or a weekend getaway.
In the region, it is also possible to devote some time to other sports, including hiking and kayaking on the Lousios River. The destination is ideal for families looking to introduce their kids to skiing and those of any age who are just beginning to ski.
Where To Stay In Mount Mainalos
When visiting Mount Mainalos, it’s a good idea to book accommodation in Vytina. The village has some comfortable guesthouses, pensions, and hotels, perfect for every budget. For instance, Guesthouse Teloni is a beautiful venue featuring a lounge with a cozy fireplace where you can rest after a day at the ski center. It is located 7 kilometers from Mount Mainalos and only 20 kilometers from the picturesque village of Dimitsana.
This ski resort is in the heart of the region of Evrytania, only 10 kilometers from Karpenissi. It takes about 4 hours to reach the region from Athens, so this ski center is often preferred for more extended stays.
At Velouxi Ski Resort, visitors can take advantage of the six ski lifts that take them to 18 different slopes ranging from easy to complex.
The area features a chalet, a unique snowboard park, shops selling and renting ski and snowboard equipment, and a ski school. The ski center is on Mount Timfristos (2200 m).
Where To Stay In Velouxi Ski Center
Melegos Inn Hotel
When visiting Evrytania, it’s a good idea to spend the nights in a hotel in Karpenissi or any of the nearby villages. Melegos Inn Hotel is 2 kilometers from Karpenissi and offers beautiful hotel rooms with balconies overlooking the mountains. The suites also feature a fireplace and spa bath for further comfort.
One of Greece’s most famous ski centers is the region of Thessalia, in Mount Pelion (1500 m). Probably among the most stunning landscapes in Greece, Mount Pelion Ski Center is a year-round destination that you can also visit, even if skiing is not one of your interests.
As a matter of fact, besides forests, you will find spectacular beaches, quaint mountain villages and — of course — the renowned Mount Pelion.
The ski center features five ski slopes, four lifts, and a chalet with restaurants, cafes, and accommodations. There is also a ski and snowboard school.
In the nearby area, visitors can explore the magnificent city of Volos, only 27 kilometers from the ski resort.
Where To Stay In Mount Pelion
Those spending their winter holidays in the area can check the beautiful mountain villages in Pelion or even book a stay in one of the many hotels in Volos, this way, it will also be possible to discover the best that this city has to offer.
Spitaki Mou is a beautiful design apartment with top reviews and convenient fees.
This fantastic ski center is located about 45 kilometers from Grevena, standing at 2113 m on the Pindos Mountains. Often depicted as one of the top snowboard destinations in the south of Europe, this place attracts young tourists from every corner of the country… and the rest of the world!
Vasilitsa Ski Center boasts 16 fantastic ski runs with different difficulty levels, terrains, and two lifts. About 200 kilometers from the northern city of Thessaloniki, the ski center is a must-see winter destination in northern Greece. The imposing Mount Olympus is also 200 kilometers away and can be seen from the summit of the Pindos Mountains.
The center features two chalets that offer accommodation, a bar, and a taverna, as well as shops to rent equipment.
Where To Stay In Vasilitsa
The best nearby places include the area of Grevena and the smaller villages of Smixi and Vouvousa. In this last town, Kerasies Guesthouse is a superb venue with every trait of the local architectural style. The property features stunning views of the Aoos River and Mount Avgo.
Situated in Epirus, on the Pindos Mountains, Metsovo Ski Center is at 1650 m on Profiti Ilias Mountain, only 4 kilometers from Metsovo, an important town in northern Greece. The ski complex has three lifts, five slopes, and several kilometers of cross-country trails.
Ideal for families with its short and easy ski runs, Metsovo is often included among the best ski centers for beginners. Open from November through March, Metsovo has a unique artificial snow system available.
The chalet features a restaurant, a coffee shop, a shop to rent or buy equipment, and a ski school.
Where To Stay In Metsovo
Katogi Averoff Hotel & Winery
If you are into skiing but also interested in local tastes and traditions, why not stay at a winery? Katogi Averoff Hotel & Winery is a four-star venue featuring a wine bar, wine shop, and restaurant. Some rooms open out to a balcony with inspiring mountain views. Over here, guests can visit the underground cellars of the famous winery or try traditional dishes by the fireplace of the dining room.
The Pisoderi Ski Center stands in Vigia, on Mount Verno (1939 m), very close to the border with Albania. This prestigious resort features five lifts and 12 runs for snowboarding and skiing, including downhill ski slopes and cross-country ski trails. One of its runs is often showcased as the best one in Greece, made for Olympic standards.
Pisoderi is about 15 kilometers from Florina, a beautiful destination all on its own. At the resort’s chalet, guests can enjoy restaurants, cafes, shops, and accommodations. Considered one of the most modern ski centers in Greece, travelers here can take ski lessons, making it an excellent destination for beginners.
Where To Stay When Visiting Pisoderi
Spacious Stone Built Home
Probably the wisest idea is to stay in Florina, where you can choose this Spacious Stone Built Home featuring a garden, barbecue facilities, and a terrace with river views. This holiday home offers ski storage space, and it’s only 31 kilometers from the National Airport of Kastoria.
Tria Pente Pigadia
Tria Pente Pigadia is a ski center on Mount Vermio (2005 m), about 17 km from the famous wine-making area of Naousa. This is another ski resort in Greece where it is possible to enjoy artificial snow during milder winters. Four lifts, five slopes, and a generous offer of alternative activities, such as trekking, mountain biking, and paragliding, are available all year round.
On the southwestern side of the same mountain, the Seli National Ski Center has an impressive variety of slopes of different levels and lifts. The center has a chalet with restaurants, a ski school, a gym, a sauna, and cafeterias.
Where To Stay In The Area
Boutique Hotel Kokkino Spiti
Boutique Hotel Kokkino Spiti is a restored 19th-century manor located along the banks of the Tripotamos River, and it is centrally located in Veria. The accommodation is also close to Vergina and Pella, while Thessaloniki International Airport is just 70 km away. It would be a pity to visit these resorts without tasting Naousa’s exceptional wines or exploring the picturesque town of Veria.
Mount Olympus (2917 m) is Greece’s tallest and most famous mountain. On its northern slopes stands the well-known Elatochori Ski Center, which features six slopes, two lifts, and a snowboarding and sled run.
The resort also features two ski schools, a shop to either rent or purchase adequate equipment for skiing, and a chalet. The resort is about 4 hours from Athens by car, and staying at the village of Elatohori is a winning idea.
Where To Stay In Elatohori
Atrion Highland Hotel
Atrion Highland Hotel is a beautiful property set amidst a dense forest in the charming old village of Elatohori. It boasts an indoor pool, hot tub, and sauna overlooking the mountains. The hotel is 8 km from Elatohori Ski Centre and 36 kilometers from the town of Katerini Town. Thessaloniki International Airport is 112 kilometers away.