Saturday, February 09, 2019

The Bourtzi Islet in Skiathos, Greece

So I am backtracking to our summer holiday trip in 2017 to Skiathos, a Greek Island in the Sporades archipelago in the northern part of the Aegean Sea. I will be posting a series of blog posts for this holiday in the coming days.

The island's resident cafe, restaurant, lounge and bar of the same name.

The view to Bourtzi from the hill.

Skiathos is a small and very pretty island, quite popular among the Greeks and European tourists, but luckily the holiday situation here hasn't reached the mass proportions of Santorini, Mykonos, Kos, and Crete. It has gotten famous in recent years though because of the Mama Mia movie which was filmed on set here. I have partly seen the movie on TV but it was after our holiday on the island. I have however watched a Mama Mia theater show in Utrecht, Netherlands many years before.

Anyway, I wanted to blog about this charming tiny peninsula annexed to the old harbour and town center of Skiathos, the Bourtzi Islet.

[To read the rest of the post and see more pictures, click the READ MORE link below]

Moi standing on the old port with the Bourtzi peninsula in the background.

This Bourtzi peninsula is a lovely little serene zen-kind of a place in Skiathos. The little islet is like a hideaway from the busyness of the town center. So near to the buzzing activity, yet it felt so far. The island is the divider that separates the old port from the new one.

I did a quick read about this place and I learned that it used to be a small fort in the 12th century and was built by the Venetian Gizi brothers who once ruled the island.

In the centuries that followed, the island was mainly left on its own, however, a school was built here at the beginning of the 20th century. The building remained and the school is now a cultural center with an outdoor summer theatre. I saw a theatre show for children when I visited the islet one late afternoon.

And in recent years, a new resident was added on the island, the trendy Boutzi restaurant. The place has a mixed and versatile vibe of a cafe, restaurant, cocktail lounge, and bar, all rolled into one. So yeah, you can easily hang out here any time of the day with your choice of drink (and food). The best thing, of course, is the view of the sea and harbour, and well, the surrounding nature.

Another cool thing to check out here is the restaurant's toilet. It has a huge open lavatory looking out to the sea. Such a brilliant idea and design.

What makes this little peninsula attractive are several factors.

It is small and cosy, and just a stone's throw away from the old harbour and city center. It is so easy to get here on foot.

The island is forested with lovely smelling tall pine trees giving the sensory effect of rest and relaxation, and being away from the hectic civilization, when just a few meters away is literally the city center with busy cafe terraces and shopping alleys.

The view is another reason. There are benches where you can sit and enjoy the views to the old harbour and watch the happenings on it, see the boats coming and going, the tourists sipping their drinks while sharing a laugh. Or you can just simply elect to focus your eyes on the clear blue Aegean Sea. Perhaps read a book here quietly. Anything goes I guess.

Dutchman and I sat here on the bench one afternoon. We just sat there, taking our time and relishing our holiday "me" and "us" time.

The pictures follow!

The old port of Skiathos.

The view of the old town center.

The Bourtzi cafe restaurant and bar.

The school built on the islet, now a cultural center.

Bar and lounge area of the cafe restaurant.

View to the new port where the commercial ferry comes in.

Modern sailing boats in the new harbour.

Restaurants and outdoor terraces on the cliff of the old town as seen from Bourtzi.

Travel Period: June-July 2017
Destination: Skiathos, Sporades Islands, Greece

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