Ouranopoulis, Halkidiki, Greece
Known as 'the gate of Mount Athos', this picturesque small village features a Byzantine tower, golden sandy beaches and traditional tavernas. Many of the hotels are situated along the coast road just outside the village.
Unaffected by mass tourism, due to its relatively isolated location, the gateway to Mount Athos is a popular stopping point for pilgrims visiting the monastic republic, particularly for the women who are not allowed in the monasteries. For men without the necessary permission and women, taking a sightseeing tour of the Holy Mountain by boat from Ouranoupolis is the only way to catch a glimpse of some of the monasteries.
This low key village features beachside cafes and local restaurants. There is no lively nightlife here however occasionally there is live music in the restaurants.
Visitors can either relax on the sandy beach or explore some of the nearby coves. From the harbour visitors can take a boat trip to the nearby islands and swim off their beaches.
Mount Athos is the reason most visitors come to this village however this can only be visited by men who have permission to enter. Others take the popular boat trip which enables a glimpse of the monastery.
Halkidiki Airport is approximately 126 km away - transfer time about 2 hours 45 minutes.
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