An abundance of leisure activities and water-sports await, set amid beautiful landscapes that provide a stunning backdrop to quaint fishing villages. Are you after thrilled-packed, sun-filled days? Or are you just looking for a taste of the traditional off the tourist trail, while enjoying some authentically local food and mingling with the locals? Find both in the amazing island of Alonissos.
The National Marine Park was founded by a Presidential Decree on May 1992 and protects 10 percent of the world’s endangered Monachus Monachus seal population, one of the largest seal species in the world, at a length of 2-3 meters and an average weight of 250 kg. The Mediterranean monk seal is represented on ancient Greek coins. Passages by Homer describe it basking in the sun on sandy beaches. The Alonissos municipality writes: “Today, the largest population of seals in the Mediterranean is found in Greece, spread out over the whole of the Aegean and Ionian Seas, while it is significant that the species has essentially disappeared from the industrialized Western Mediterranean. This makes it easy to appreciate the importance of the Park in protecting the seals. Because of its morphology and position, the Park is an ideal habitat, rich in food. The active participation of the region’s fishermen and the fishing Cooperative of Alonissos in the protection effort is significant, and has largely contributed to the elimination of the deliberate killing of seals in the area of the Park.”
Alonissos is the largest island of the Park, which also encompasses six smaller islands (Peristera, Kyra Panagia, Gioura, Skantzoura, and Piperi) and 22 uninhabited islands and rocky outcrops. You can embark on a day trip that includes a tour to all of these places.