Portaria: Enjoy the gem of Mount Pelion in spring

Portaria Pelion

Although Mount Pelion is known for its winter landscape, the region's villages are incomparably endowed by nature, meaning they are perfect for any time of the year.

With the weather warming up, Portia in Pelion is ideal for a spring getaway with a loved one or family.

Portia in Pelion

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Arriving there, you will fall in love with its architecture. The starting point of your walk is the Town Hall, on the uphill main street, which is full of life from the residents and the first visitors of spring.

People coexist with the sound of the many stone fountains amid thousands of flowers and plane trees.

Portia in Pelion

Following the main street and the cobbled alleys, you will discover mansions that overlook the Pagasetic Gulf and the port of Volos. Many of the mansions function as traditional guesthouses and luxury hotels, while if you look more closely at their stunning facades, you will distinguish two different architectural approaches.

One is the "Egyptiotika" (the name is due to the locals who got rich in Egypt and returned to Portaria in the summers), which has a double external staircase that leads to the entrance to the first level.

The second, the more classical and identified with Pelion, requires the entrance at the courtyard level.

Portaria Pelion

It is also worth visiting the now-ruined hotel Mega Theoxenia, which was a jewel of luxury in the Balkans at the beginning of the 20th century.

If you intend to delve more deeply into the area's history, the Historical and Folklore Museum is worth visiting. This museum represents the area's history through family heirlooms and family photographs.

A tour of the settlement's churches is also interesting, such as the beautiful Panagia Portaria, with the characteristic fresco over its entrance, or the three-aisled basilica of Agios Nikolaos, which stands out for its high bell tower and its wood-carved iconostasis.

Portia in Pelion
The tiny Panagia Portaria/Photo: Periklis Merakos

It is worth noting that one of the versions concerning the name of the village has to do with the church of Panagia, which was built in the middle of the 17th century, with the other referring to its geographical location, in the sense that it is the "gate" of Pelion.

The small Sisterhood Square is also worth visiting. From the path that passes through beautiful mansions and simple village houses, you can admire the view that reaches Volos. The churches of Agios Georgios and Agioi Anargyri are also worth visiting.

Portaria is certainly not complete without a walk on the incredibly beautiful Path of the Centaurs, which is one of the most accessible walking routes and, according to legend, was used by the centaurs to get to eastern Pelion.

But a visit to Portaria is also worth it just for the delicacies. The Women's Agritourism Cooperative of Portaria, founded in 1997, has spoon sweets, baklavas with almonds or walnuts, pasta, jams, and many other goodies on its shelves.

Portia in Pelion
Women's Agritourism Cooperative of Portaria/Photo: Periklis Merakos

Hospitality is one problem you will not face when arriving in Portaria. Excellent accommodation options, like the Filoxenia and Kritsa Gastronomy Hotel in the village's central square, combine excellent cuisine, a cozy atmosphere, and professionalism.

Next to them is the Archontiko Pantou, with a wonderful view of Pagasitikos, and the Egyptian Naoumidis Mansion, which combines luxury with romance.

At the same time, short-term rental platforms provide several solutions for those with a smaller budget or who want something special, offering access to several hostels and rooms available for this purpose.

As for food, there is the excellent restaurant Kritsa Gastronomy Hotel, which is famous for its rooster in wine and rabbit with mash. Gevsokratoras, with its fireplace and sourdough bread, offers a fantastic taste experience—especially grilled meat.

Manor House Everywhere and Agora 1955
Manor House Everywhere and Agora 1955

A stop at the elegant all-day café-bistro Agora 1955 is a must. In addition to its tasty cappuccino and delicious doughnuts, it also functions as a wine bar, with a special love for the local and the Thessalian vineyard.


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