Kissos: A Hidden Gem in the Heart of Mount Pelion, Greece


At an altitude of 520 meters on the eastern side of Mount Pelion lies a small, well-hidden traditional village with abundant flowing waters, seamlessly combining mountain and sea in an absolutely magical way.

Named Kissos, it is located 48 kilometres from the city of Volos, just 12 kilometres from the Agriolefkes ski resort in Hania, and 8 kilometres from the beautiful beach of Agios Ioannis.

While most may be unaware of its existence, its roots delve deep into history. Based on archaeological findings, the settlement seems to have flourished during the Roman period. Initially situated near the sea, its expanse reached the limits of the neighbourhoods of Agios Dimitrios and Agios Ioannis. However, due to repeated pirate raids, it gradually moved towards the mountain.

Kissos is one of the most tranquil villages in Centaur's Mountain, thanks to its well-concealed location within a dense, forested area consisting of firs, plane trees, chestnut trees, oak trees, mulberry trees, apple trees, cherry trees, walnut trees, and, of course, many of these trees are adorned with climbing ivy, giving the settlement its name.

However, according to the historian G. Kordatos, the village gets its name, Kissos, from a corruption of the word "chrysos" (gold), stemming from a mineral deposit discovered in the area.

It is a representative example of a traditional village, with most of its shops concentrated around its central square, at the heart of the settlement. Old cobblestone streets, houses built in the characteristic Pelion architecture, and abundant flowing waters surround the village.

The main attraction of Kissos is the Church of Agia Marina, which rises in the vast paved square at the centre of the village. Built-in 1650 and radically renovated in 1745, with remarkable architecture and a rich interior decoration featuring frescoes inspired by the Apocalypse, the Old Testament, and the New Testament, bearing the signature of the folk painter Pagonis. With its enormous reputation in the surrounding area, the tripartite basilica of Agia Marina garners admiration from all visitors.

A local tradition claims Rigas Velestinlis taught in Kissos for two years after graduating from the renowned Greek School of Zagora around 1775. A bust of him adorns the village's central square in front of the Church of Agia Marina.

Whether in winter or summer, with snow or sun, whether heading to the ski resort or the pristine beaches of Agios Ioannis or Plaka for dining or an overnight stay, Kissos generously offers tranquillity and its authentic nature to all those who choose it as their destination.

And, of course, don't just stay in the village. It's worth walking its unique paths, such as the one to the Monastery of Agios Efstathios, or embarking on incredible off-road routes in the surrounding forests. If you find yourself in the area in the summer, stay and enjoy the Pelion International Festival, with events organized every summer in Kissos, Zagora, and Tsagarada.


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