10 Best Things to Do in Zagora Greece (2024)

Zagora Greece is a prosperous, totally unspoiled village spread on a green slope overlooking the Aegean Sea in Pelion Mount, mainland Greece. Similarly to Tsagarada village, it has four large squares, where you can have Greek coffee in centuries-old cafes, across from imposing churches, and near small family shops selling local goodies.

Parisena and Chorefto sandy beaches in Zagora Pelion Greece.
Parisena and Chorefto beaches

A few km from the village are the popular and gorgeous sandy Chorefto and Parisena beaches, and with dozens of hiking trails around, Zagora Greece will definitely charm you.

I was staying in Tsagarada but visited Zagora Greece as a day trip as the villages are close (Zagora is 25 km north of Tsagarada). It was a rainy day but thankfully it didn’t rain constantly so we enjoyed a stroll in the lovely village. These are the places I visited during my trip there:

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Zagora Fast Facts

  • It has 2.775 permanent residents (census 2021).
  • It was founded in the early 12th century by the locals most likely to escape the constant pirate raids in Chorefto.
  • Industries: It is famous in Greece for its huge production of Zagorin apples (more than 9,000 tons annually). It also has numerous chestnuts, kiwi, and quince trees and they make delicious, jams and sweets that you can buy from their local shops.
  • Locals are super friendly and hospitable and love to chat about their village.
  • Zagora combines traditional mountain villages with beach travel and hiking perfectly!

Without further ado here are the best things you can do in this beautiful place of earth called Zagora:

1. Stay in a Traditional Zagora Greece Mansion

Zagora is built at a height of 500 meters on one of the slopes of Pelion Mountain and most of the houses are centuries old and made mostly with wood and stone. One of the best things to do in Zagora Greece is to stay at a traditional mansion for a comfortable stay with stunning sea views.

The room of Guesthouse Theareston in Zagora pelion Greece.
Guesthouse Theareston

I always suggest you stay in a traditional guesthouse especially if you seek a break from the hustle and bustle of modern life, as they offer a retreat into a more tranquil environment. They’re like time machines to the past, but with Wi-Fi 😀 .

I love Guesthouse Theareston (mid-range, family-friendly) in a quiet street in Zagora, with a large swimming pool in the garden and great sea views. It has traditionally decorated rooms with a fireplace, a beautiful hotel full of charm, local character, and modern facilities. And breakfast is included!

2. Visit the Beautiful Churches of Zagora

Zagora's Main Square in Pelion Peninsula and a woman walking. Zagora Greece.
Zagora Main Square

At the main Square of Zagora with centuries-old plane trees, you will find the Agios Georgios Church, built in 1765, with a very impressive wood-carved iconostasis (1774).

**The pink house in the above photo is the Zagora women’s fruit cooperative where they sell their delicious, freshly homemade jams, marmalades, and other local sweets.

Agios Georgios Church entrance in Zagora Pelion and a man walking. Zagora Greece.
Agios Georgios Church entrance

At Agia Kyriaki Square in Zagora, you will find the Chruch of Agia Kyriaki (1740), an imposing church with brilliant interior decoration and a magnificent gilded wood-carved iconostasis. Agia Kyriaki is also a fantastic place to have your lunch or dinner.

If you love churches and chapels Zagora has plenty you can visit and explore their tradition and decoration by walking around the narrow cobblestone alleys. 

3. Explore the Historical Library of Zagora Greece

Public Library of Zagora Pelion Mt and the Greek Flag. Zagora Greece.
Library of Zagora

The famous Library of Zagora in Pelion, founded in 1762, holds today more than 10,000 titles of books, magazines, and about 3,500 old books and manuscripts. The Library is housed in a building owned by the Municipality of Zagora, under the supervision of the Greek Ministry of Education.

The Zagora Library holds precious books like ‘Greek Grammar’ by Theodoros Gazis printed in January 1495, in Venice. Many books have handwritten notes in the white margins of their pages, which is very enlightening for Zagora’s history and the Greek history of the 18th century in general.

The library is next to the main square of Zagora Greece and I had the pleasure to be guided to the library’s treasures by the very kind lady responsible for the Museum.

More about their library and its exhibits you can read on their website.

4. Munch on the Renown Zagorin Apples

Zagorin Apples in baskets in Zagora Pelion. Zagora Greece.

One of the best things to do in Zagora Pelion is to eat…apples!

Zagora is famous for its Starling variety of juicy, delicious red apples, so unique that they now are a Protected Designation of Origin products. The apples are exported all over the world under the Zagorin brand, from the local Zagora Agricultural Cooperative contributing significantly to the prosperity and local wealth of the village.

Zagora village has also a succulent variety of fruits such as plums, strawberries, pears, kiwis, quinces, and large chestnuts.

5. Visit the Ellinomouseio or Rigas Feraios School

 Ellinomouseio in Zagora and the Greek Flag. Zagora Greece.
Ellinomouseio in Zagora

Ellinomouseio is the oldest school of Pelion, founded in 1777, and some of its students are famous in Greece as they became later the pioneers of the Greek War of Independence (1821):

Rigas Feraios, Anthimos Gazis, Grigoris Konstantas, and Kallinikos Lapatis studied Philosophy, ancient Greek, Latin, and French, history, and mathematics.

The building is one of the most beautiful and durable buildings of Pelion, a remnant of the popular culture that endured the raids of many during the centuries.

Today it works as a museum and library, containing a large number of books, maps, and manuscripts from Greek history.

6. Have a Meal at the Best-View Traditional Tavern in Zagora

Zagora traditional Tavern entrance, to Meintani. Zagora Greece.
Zagora Tavern, to Meintani

Having lunch with my friends in Meintani traditional tavern, was one of my happiest moments and one of the best things to do in Zagora Greece!

Traditional lunch in a tavern in Zagora Pelion
Our starter dishes – and some starter wine!

Meintani or Niki’s Tavern – Niki is the amazing owner – is a 5-minute walk from Zagora’s main square. Tasteful Greek dishes, such as her famous stuffed zucchini flower, dolmadaki, filled vine leaves, freshly caught fish, spetzofai (Pelion traditional dish), and local wine are just perfect and remind us of old Greece.

We stayed on the balcony, with a breathtaking view of the mountains and Chorefto Beach. At this tavern, I had one of the best memories of Zagora.

Other taverns with great food that you can visit in Zagora Greece are:

  • Patis Taverna (Tel. (+30) 24260.222.02), in the district of Agia Kyriaki which specializes in mushrooms
  •  Psilou Taverna (Tel. (+30) 24260.236.33), in the district of Agios Georgios, is a nice place specializing in meat, grilled perfectly
  • Ylien café (Tel. (+30) 24260.235.77), where you can have coffee, apple pie, or even breakfast. 

Did you know that Pelion was one of the Mamma Mia locations?

7. Hike the Zagora Trails

One of the best things to do in Zagora is to hike from the Zagora center to Chorefto Beach, a 3,1 km total distance.

The trail passes from Ellinomouseio, and if you walk for 150 meters down the main asphalt you will find a signed post where the kalderimi (Greek type of trail found in rural and islands) begins.

Sea View from Zagora towards Chorefto
View from Zagora towards Chorefto

As you hike downwards towards the beautiful beach of Chorefto, you pass by fields of apple trees and the large Zagorin factory. On a couple of occasions, you end up on the main street, and you have to find again the trail a bit further down. That happens a lot with Pelion hiking close to the villages as they have made the roads around the old donkey trails.

8. Swim in Chorefto Beach, Zagora’s Main Beach

Chorefto Beach in Zagora

Chorefto Beach (or Horefto) is one of the most beautiful beaches in Pelion with soft golden sand and crystal clear blue-green waters of ​​the Aegean Sea. It is partly organized and very popular in July and August with seafront taverns and cafes.

Another option is Parisena which is connected to Chorefto by a short path, making it a slightly quieter beach in summer. It has a beautiful sandy beach, azure waters, and lush vegetation that reaches the sea. Parisena is not organized but there is a small canteen for the necessary cold coffee and water! 😀

A great place to stay in Chorefto is the seafront Aeolos Hotel & Villas – Pelion (mid-range, family-friendly).

9. Ski in Agriolefkes, Pelion Ski Resort

Agriolefkes – Pelion Ski Resort

The ski center Agriolefkes in Chania Pelion is 21 km from Zagora and is one of the most picturesque ski resorts in Greece. While you ski you get to have amazing panoramic views of the Pagasitikos Gulf and the Aegean Sea.

It has 5 lifts and 5 slopes, one is Lang-Lauf,  at 1471 m height, a chalet, shops to rent or buy ski gear, restaurants, and a cafe. A great place in total if you love skiing with sea views!

10. Explore the Other Stunning Pelion villages

Milies village in Pelion, Old Station train
Milies in Pelion, Old Station

Zagora is not the only beautiful village in Pelion Mountain. Pelion has 70 traditional, beautiful villages and settlements full of old mansions and monuments, trees laden with pears, apples, chestnuts, planes, streams, and centuries-old bridges. Some of the most popular villages in Pelion and relatively close to Zagora that you will love to explore are:

Makrinitsa, Portaria, Tsagarada, Kissos, Milies, Argalasti, Damouchari and Agios Ioannis.

FAQs for Zagora Pelion

Where Best to Stay in Zagora

Choosing the perfect place to stay in Zagora Pelion depends on your priorities and preferences. Here’s a breakdown of different areas within Zagora to help you decide:

Zagora village:

  • Pros: Immerse yourself in the heart of the village, with easy access to shops, restaurants, cafes, and the main square.
  • Cons: If it is summer you need to drive 8 km to Chorefto Beach.

For a wonderful stay with stunning views: Hotel Zagora and Guesthouse Theareston are beautifully restored mansions offering traditional architecture, a swimming pool, and panoramic vistas.

Chorefto Beach

  • Pros: Beautiful beachfront location. Chorefto boasts a stunning 2.5 km long sandy beach with crystal clear waters, perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and water sports. Quieter and more relaxed atmosphere: Compared to the busier village center of Zagora, Chorefto offers a more peaceful and laid-back vibe, ideal for those seeking relaxation.
  • Cons: Limited amenities. Compared to Zagora village, Chorefto has fewer shops, restaurants, and cafes within walking distance. You might need a car or taxi to access most amenities.
  • Fewer nightlife options: If you enjoy lively evenings and nightlife, Chorefto offers fewer options compared to the village center.

Great seafront properties in Chorefto Beach include the beautiful Aeolos Hotel & Villas – Pelion (4-star) and Hotel Cleopatra (2-star).

When is Best to go to Zagora Pelion

Pelion is simply amazing whenever you visit, as all four seasons offer endless opportunities for both adventurous and relaxed vacations.

Summer vacation in Pelion starts in June and it will be over by early September. The beaches are simply stunning, sandy with trees and clear waters. The waters might be cooler than it is in the south of Greece.

Hiking Trail in Pelion. Credit Alan Risk

October and November are fantastic months for hiking, and watching the colors of the forests change from green to purple, orange, pink, and all colors in between. December – March is the perfect month for skiing or snow hiking. And the rich wildflowers and dense forests in Spring Pelion and Zagora, in particular, will just astonish you.

Related Article: When is the Best Time to Go to Greece?

How to Get to Zagora in Pelion

How to reach Zagora by Air

The closest airport to Pelion is the Nea Anchialos National Airport,  30 km from Volos near Almiros. During summer several European airlines fly to Nea Anchialos. If this is not an option you can fly to Athens (334 km away from Pelion, driving time 3.5-4 hours) or to Thessaloniki (218 km away, driving 2,5-3 hours).

How to reach Zagora by Car

Tsagarada Pelion road in a forest
Pelion Greece road

Zagora is 365 km from Athens and 252 km from Thessaloniki and the cost for tolls and fuel is estimated at €70 and €40 respectively, for a one-way trip. Driving to Pelion Greece is my favorite way of traveling and it is not only because I love driving and the roads leading to Volos are impeccable. It is the freedom to stop whenever I want and visit a site en route I have never been to before.

Whenever I cannot use my car, I always use trustworthy Discover Cars to find the best deal for renting a car in Greece!

How to reach Zagora by Bus

If driving is not your thing, you can take the public bus from the Athens bus station (KTEL) in Liosion (there is a large KTEL in Kifisos but it doesn’t go to Pelion). Find the routes to Volos and how to issue your ticket here. The thing with the public buses is that when you get to Volos you will have to change buses that go to Pelion Greece. Choose your destination village from this list here.

How to reach Zagora by Private Tour

A private tour to Pelion Greece, customized to your wishes with a tailored itinerary and a professional, English-speaking driver (with live commentary on the road), is the most easygoing choice.

What local delicacies should I try?

When in Zagora, be sure to sample local delicacies such as “spetzofai” (sausage and peppers stew), “tsitsiravla” (wild greens), “kolokythopita” (zucchini pie), and “tsoureki” (traditional sweet bread). Don’t forget to pair these with some locally produced wine or tsipouro.

Is Zagora Greece, family-friendly?

Absolutely! Families can enjoy leisurely walks through the village, explore nature, visit museums, and spend quality time on Chorefto beach.

Are there any cultural events or festivals in Zagora?

Yes, Zagora hosts various cultural events and festivals throughout the year, celebrating local traditions, music, and arts. One of the most notable events is the Zagora Chestnut Festival, usually held in October, where visitors can enjoy chestnut-themed delicacies, live music, and traditional dances.

Are there any ATMs in Zagora?

Yes, there is an ATM at Piraeus Bank in the center of Zagora.

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About the author
Evgenia Mataragka
Hi! I am an Athens-based Greek obsessed with exploring Greece and bringing you the best travel experience ever!

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