- 29 October 2023
How to get to Halkidiki? Here is the information on how to get there!
Have you heard of the Halkidiki Peninsula, but do not know how to get there? Have you seen some photos of incredible beaches and would like to understand how to get to them?
If you are trying to figure out how to get to the Halkidiki Peninsula, here you will find all the information you need to better plan your holiday in this part of Greece waiting to be discovered.
But where exactly is Halkidiki Peninsula located?
Let me begin in order! Before we figure out how to get to the Peninsula of Halkidiki, let us see exactly where it is. The Halkidiki Peninsula is located in northern Greece east of the city of Thessaloniki. The peninsula takes its name from the region called Halkidiki.
On the map it is easily identifiable because it is located between the city of Thessaloniki and the border with Turkey (which is still far away) where you can see three small peninsulas, which the Greeks call feet. These three peninsulas make up the region of Halkidiki. Each peninsula has its own name, which will become familiar to you, if you have to look for beaches or where to sleep.
The first peninsula is called Kassandra, the central one is called Sithonia, and the third, the easternmost, is known as Mount Athos. This last peninsula is partly not accessible, except for men with visas, because it is governed by monks.
Arriving in Halkidiki by plane landing at Thessaloniki Airport
The fastest way to do this is to get to Greece by plane. The closest airport to Halkidiki is the Makedonia International Airport of Thessaloniki. The airport is located about 60 km from the beginning of the first peninsula, which is the closest point. I would say it is the only international airport in the area, at least within a reasonable driving distance.
Since Makedonia Airport of Thessaloniki is an international airport, it is well served by many European countries and also by Italy. The acronym of the airport is SKG. In recent years, flights have increased. Thanks to the Greek national airline (Aegean) and the various low-cost airlines, it is possible to get to Thessaloniki from several Italian or European cities with a direct flight. Other airlines (in particular the Star Alliance group) use intermediate stopovers to get to Thessaloniki: a solution that may be less convenient because it involves two flights, but which could also be advantageous depending on the city from which you depart. Some flights are only seasonal, but in the end that is the time of interest for a holiday!
Once you have landed in Thessaloniki, how can you get to the Peninsula of Halkidiki?
By bus. Yes, there is such a possibility, but I do not want to talk about it. I strongly advise against it. Reaching the Halkidiki Peninsula by bus (the national body that manages buses is called KTEL), means being really limited in your choices. Meanwhile, in order to take the right bus, you must first take a taxi to reach the bus station that serves Halkidiki which is located towards the city of Thessaloniki. But that is not the point! There are no valid connections between the villages of the peninsulas and you cannot reach most of the best beaches. Cost-effective solution? Undoubtedly, yes! But moving around Halkidiki becomes a problem.
And therefore? The best way to get to Halkidiki from Thessaloniki is renting a car! But not so much to cover the stretch of road (a two-lane ring road in each direction, free for now) that takes you to the peninsulas, but because having a car is essential to move to a different beach every day during your holiday. Halkidiki has many beaches, some of which are not easily accessible and only the car guarantees you maximum flexibility to be able to get around the peninsula or simply to move from Kassandra to Sithonia.
A final option is to travel from Thessaloniki to Halkidiki by private transfer. Some resorts organize transfers for their customers. A viable choice if your goal is to spend the holiday period within the resort itself, perhaps in front of the beach, and do at most a few organized excursions. It is not the option I would strongly suggest since Halkidiki has so many beaches that are worth visiting.
Getting to the Peninsula of Halkidiki by car from Italy
If your vacation lasts ten days or less, I would say there is no point in you going ahead with reading. Arriving in Halkidiki from Italy with your own car involves many hours and probably two nights are lost between going back and forth. You will probably end up spending more time on the road than relaxing on the beach with the sound of the waves.
However, if your holiday lasts a few weeks, reaching Halkidiki from Italy by car can be a valid alternative to flying because you save on the cost of flights (which, however, are cheap if bought well in advance) but above all on the cost of renting the car at your destination for many days.
There are basically two ways to reach the Halkidiki Peninsula by car from Italy:
- Go all the way by car: from the Italian border of Trieste to the first foot, it is about 1,400 km. It is really convenient if you live in the north of Italy. The city of Belgrade is located about halfway from the border, so you can split the route into two parts.
- Ferry from an Italian port to Igoumenitsa. The Greek port of Igoumenitsa is served by various ferry lines from Italian ports such as Venice, Ancona, Bari, and Brindisi. The closer the Italian port is to Greece, the less time you spend on the ferry, but we are always talking about several hours, if not even a whole night. Once you arrive in Igoumenitsa, consider that you have another 400 km to cover from the west coast of Greece to the Peninsula of Halkidiki. There are many lovely places along the way to stop and rest.
If you are looking for what to do at Halkidiki…
Click on “Find things to do” here below to discover the different activities and experiences you should during your holiday in Halkidiki.
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