Halkidiki is a peninsula, southeast of the city of Thessaloniki (Greece's second largest city). With its characteristic three peninsulas (Kassandra, Sithonia, Athos), it resembles a trident piercing the Aegean. Sunny, golden sandy beaches, deep and picturesque gulfs, traditional villages and modern tourist resorts, small islands and sheltered bays, pine-clad hills descending to the sea, Mediterranean climate and magnificent natural beauty compose the picture of today's Halkidiki. The capital of Halkidiki is Poligiros, located in the center of Halkidiki (69 km from Thessaloniki). Transportation is made mainly by car or by bus and the closest airport is "Airport Macedonia", near the city of Thessaloniki.
Inhabited approximately 700,000 years ago, as revealed by the foundings from the prehistoric area of Petralona. Neolithic villages and villages from the Copper Period were located in the west and central Halkidiki, many cities flourished, among which "Olynthos" was the most popular one (archaeological sites of Olynthos, Potidea, Stagira,Toroni).
In 384 BC Aristotle, the great philosopher and Alexander the Great's teacher, was born in Stagira. Halkidiki took its name from city of Chalkis, located in Euboa, that colonized it in the 8th and 7th century BC. Kassandra took its name from Kassandros (King of Macedonia) , Sithonia from Sithon, a son of God Poseidon and Athos was named after a giant called Athos. In the 9th century the first monastic communities were established in Athos. Today, the monastic state of Athos (also called "Holly Mountain"), is a shelter of Byzantine monasteries, caves, monks, prayers, a "mountain-church" for the thousand-years Christian Orthodox religion.
No matter where you go, Halkidiki cannot fail to please you. Throughout, an effort has been made to develop tourist facilities that are in keeping with the natural surroundings. Most of the hotels and private homes in the area are built in the traditional Macedonian style, designed to enhance rather then detract from the environment. In planning for tourism, the people of Halkidiki have tried to make their resorts as appealing and as ecologically sound as possible.
Sithonia is the second peninsula of Halkidiki. The rugged, exciting landscape of this middle prong appeals to nature lovers and holiday makers seeking refuge from the trappings of civilization.
The coastline is attractively varied - a succession of fishermen's hamlets, picturesque little harbors, deserted beaches of all sizes surrounded by trees and bushes. Sithonia is a symphony in blue and green; names do not exist for all the shades and hues of vegetation, sea and sky you'll find here.
But you don't have to "rough it" in Sithonia. There are hotels of all standards to choose from, including the only deluxe complex in Halkidiki with an 18-hole golf course among its many facilities. Tennis courts and water sports are widely available, and horseback riding through the pine forests is unequalled anywhere in Greece. For nightlife and other amusements associated with resorts, Sithonia manages to combine traditional beauty and hospitality with contemporary pleasures.
Neos Marmaras, cosmopolitan summer resort amongst sea and mountain. A fantastic location where each step you take you come across new experience. Discover the harmony of people and nature in the place of surprises. Hospitable people, happenings and aroma of the fresh fish in the tavernakia, combine the everyday enjoyment of holidays. Exotic remote bays offer their embrace to whom ever wishes to taste the hot sun and the crystal blue sea.
Useful information and telephone numbers
Neos Marmaras (Office +30-23750-20033) is a coastal town of Sithonia, the middle peninsula of Chalkidiki, located 125 Kilometers from Thessaloniki - Greece's second largest city. Situated amphitheatrically on a three-hill mountain cluster known as the Dragontelis of Itamos it is the largest mountain region of Sithonia with peak altitudes of 811 meters. Here, northern precipitation in conjunction with the beautiful blue sea and luscious green mountainsides give one the impression of being on an idyllic Greek island.
For more details on Neos Marmaras village visit http://www.neosmarmarasnet.gr/uk/service/service.htm.