A Quick Guide To The Best Ski Resorts Close to Athens Greece
Believe it or not, skiing is a popular activity in Greece! Do not let those brochures and flyers of the deep blue Mediterranean waters fool you into thinking that this is all there is to Greece. You only need to look at the number of ski resorts in Greece to understand that skiing is a thriving sport in the country that is known primarily as a summer beach getaway and cruise destination.
The other face of Greece has totally thrilled me. I didn’t expect that there would be a country that could combine so well the sea of the islands along with the high snowy mountains. A country that I could swim in its deep blue seas in the summer and ski in its slopes in the winter. Well, there is and I feel so lucky that I have explored it.
Get ready for your trip in Greece and let us take a look at four of the most famous and well-loved ski resorts in Greece, that are the closest and most readily accessible from the nation’s capital, Athens.
1) Kalavrita Ski Center:
On the foot of Mt. Helmos and around 200 km away from Athens lies one of the most organized ski centers in Greece, the Kalavrita Ski Center. It is open from December to April, the entire duration of the winter season in Greece. Skiers will have a choice from among all the levels of difficulty posed by the 12 ski sites. One of which, the “Slalom in Styga” happens to be one of the largest ski sites in the country. Of course, beginners could take advantage of the ski lessons provided at the three skiing schools in the resort. The modern facilities in the Ski Center allows for other activities, such as snow boarding, snow mobiling, night skiing, and even paragliding.
2) Parnassos Ski Center:
165 km, or two to three hours away from Athens and accessible by car, Mt. Parnassus, or simply known as the Parnassos, has two ski centers on its slopes. One of them is the Parnassos Ski Center, which is touted as the largest ski center in Greece, combining the Kellaria and Fterolakka sites. Open from December until March of every year, the Ski Center has 25 ski runs and around 12 ski routes that run a total length of 30 km. This gives people of varying skills and levels of competence in skiing to still have a lot of fun on the slopes. With 14 lifts that combines 5 chair lifts and 8 surface lifts, the most popular ski resort in Greece also has three restaurants, cafes, an equipment rental shop, babysitting facilities and even a snowboarding school for those who want to try something different.
3) Mainalo Ski Resort:
If you’re flying in from the airport in Athens, it would take you roughly 3 hours to get to the Mainalo Ski Resort, which is one of the closest ski resorts to Athens, at 170 km. Along with Seli and Parnassos, Mainalo is one of the three oldest ski resorts in the country, having opened its slopes since 1965. With eight ski runs and four lifts, skiers of all levels of skill will find this resort to fit all their needs. Its modern facilities also make way for snowboarding and snowmobiling. If the slopes become too much for you, you can try riding on one of their ATVs or even their Snow-hawks.
4) Velouchi Ski Center:
Also known as the Karpenisi Ski Resort, this ski center is located 12 km away from the Karpenisi town and 280 km from Athens. It boasts 10 slopes of all levels of difficulty, making it ideal for all types of skiers. Its seven lifts, which can service more than 5,150 individuals each per hour, will afford resort guests with a stunning view of the mountainous vista of central Greece. Its chalet can accommodate up to 100 resort guests at one time. Other facilities include a restaurant, a café, a bar, a ski school, a ski equipment rental shop, first aid center, and lots of shops to buy souvenirs from.
About the Author An avid traveller and outdoor enthusiast, Nick loves to combine travel to exotic places with ski. In his blog he writes about ski equipment and stores such as my review on moosejaw store in order to help skiers choose the ideal gear according to their needs.