Damouchari: Pelion’s Secret Beach Paradise

Damouchari (or Ntamouchari) is a tiny village built around a small, picturesque harbor in the northeastern part of Pelion, in the Thessaly region of mainland Greece. It is a small traditional, fishing village with a lush green background that suddenly became world-famous when a scene from Mamma Mia was filmed here.

Beloved by Greeks for weekend escapes, this charming seaside village remains largely undiscovered by international tourists. This unspoiled character is precisely what makes Damouchari so captivating. So, without further ado, let’s delve into this guide and uncover the secrets of Damouchari.

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The last time I visited Damouchari was late October, but it is a perfect year-round destination. To enjoy this beautiful village I suggest spending at least 2 days visiting its many beaches and attractions.

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Damouhari Fast Facts

Crystal-clear haven: Dive into the refreshing embrace of Damouchari's Aegean waters.
The pretty harbor

  • It has a population of about 41 people.
  • The main industries are fishing, agriculture, and tourism.
  • The village is home to a small number of guesthouses and taverns.
  • Damouchari is a popular destination for swimming, snorkeling, and sunbathing.
  • The village is also a good base for exploring the surrounding area, which is home to several villages, hiking trails, and historical sites.
  • Most Scenic Hotel to Stay in Damouchari: Cleopatra’s Miramare.

Damouchari Beaches

Where mountains meet the sea: Picturesque Damouchari Bay, a feast for the senses.
The harbor and the beach of Damouchari. Credit: Cleopatra’s Miramare

The village expands into two main small coves, the harbor with the taverns and the main beach, which is a 1-minute walk from the taverns.

A taste of Greece: Traditional charm meets turquoise waters in Damouchari.
The beach. Credit: Konstantinos Koukouris

The sand and pebble beach with a background of olive trees is perfect for enjoying the sunrise as Damouchari is located east. You often see people practicing yoga or meditation on the peaceful beach. It is not organized with umbrellas and beds but you can get food supplies from the nearby taverns.

A haven for relaxation: Reconnect with nature and find peace in Damouchari Pelion.

Just outside the main village lies a hidden treasure: a series of natural pools waiting to be explored. These stunning natural pools offer a secluded escape and a truly unforgettable experience. They are perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and simply enjoying the peace and tranquility of nature.

The Byzantine Castle

The Byzantine Castle ruins in Damouchari Pelion.
Castle of Damouchari

Between the two bays stands a low green hill with the remains of a Byzantine Castle. For centuries, Damouchari was a unique natural harbor and the first port of call in the area, providing security from the pirates to the inhabitants of the eastern Pelion.

The castle probably dates after the 10th century, as it is a typical Byzantine fortress, which may also have been used by the Venetians when they exploited the port of Damouchari for some time. Today, between the olive trees and kermes oaks you can find the few remains: the walls surrounding it, the ruins of the Turkish customs house, and a cistern.

Damouchari Mamma Mia

The Dancing Queen scene in Damouchari,
The Dancing Queen scene in Damouchari


The Mamma Mia film was primarily captured on the nearby islands of Skopelos and Skiathos, right across from the Pelion peninsula. However, very few know that Damouchari was also one of the film locations in Greece.

In 2007, the film crew transformed the picturesque harbor by constructing a wooden bridge, which served as the backdrop for the ‘Dancing Queen’ scene. This temporary addition, though dismantled later, left a lasting impression on the village, and even today, remnants of the Mamma Mia filming can be found in souvenirs and hotels like the Damma Mia.

Food-Tasting in the Local Taverns

A cafe in fromt of a sea in Greece.
Victoria’s Cafe

The reviews for the taverns in Damouchari, although they are in an idyllic location, have been controversial at least this was the scene until last season (2023). I have been visiting Damouchari off-season so I do not have personal experience of the food there.

Victoria’s Cafe has amazing reviews and is a tasteful seafront terrace perfect for breakfast or lunch/dinner and has also a small souvenir shop. As the terrace is overseeing where the ‘Dancing Queen’ scene was filmed this spot practically feels like stepping into a scene from ‘Mamma Mia!

Embrace the Active Side of Damouchari

Escape the ordinary: Find serenity amidst the natural beauty of Damouchari Bay while kayaking.

Damouchari caters to more than just beach bums. If you’re seeking adventure, here are some options:

  • Hiking Trails: Lace up your boots and explore the scenic trails that weave through olive groves and lush vegetation. One trail that holds a special place in my heart is the Agios Ioannis – Papa Nero Beach – Damouchari – Fakistra Beach Loop. This 10.5-kilometer trail is considered moderately challenging and usually takes around 3 hours to complete.
  • Cycling Adventures: Rent a bike and explore the charming villages and surrounding areas at your own pace. Breathe in the fresh air, soak in the scenery, and discover hidden gems along the way.
  • Water Sports: Get your adrenaline pumping with various water sports options. Try kayaking or paddleboarding and explore the coastline from a unique perspective. Book a half-day guided tour of Damouchari, Fakistra, snorkeling and swimming.

Explore Beyond Damouchari

Fakistra beautiful beach in pelion Tsagarada with sweimmers.
Fakistra

Damouchari’s prime location makes it an ideal base for exploring the captivating villages of Pelion:

Tsagarada

8 km to the south lies the charming village of Tsagarada, known for its traditional stone houses, the 1000-year-old gigantic plane tree, and breathtaking mountain views. Wander through cobbled streets, discover hidden cafes, and soak in the authentic atmosphere. Go to Fakistra, one of the most beautiful beaches in Pelion. It is not organized so you better take some water and snacks with you

Agios Ioannis village

Agios Ioannis seafront village with swimmers.
Agios Ioannis

2.5 km to the north you get to Agios Ioannis, a charming little village surrounded by a beautiful beach with crystal-clear waters. Two more nearby beaches, Papa Nero and Plaka, are Blue Flag winners meaning they are super clean and perfect for swimming, snorkeling, or just chilling under an umbrella.

Mouresi

The main square of MOuresi with plane trees and taverns.
Mouresi main square

3 km to the west lies Mouresi, a traditional village clinging to the mountainside with jaw-dropping views of the Aegean. This peaceful gem is all about classic Pelion vibes: think charming stone houses with slate roofs nestled amidst lush nature. In the shady central square, grab a seat at a local taverna and fuel up on delicious local eats – the perfect way to soak up the relaxed Mouresi atmosphere.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where to Stay in Damouchari

Damouchari offers a variety of accommodation options to suit diverse needs and budgets.

The Cleopatra's Miramare hotel in front of the bay of Damouchari in Pelion.
Cleopatra’s Miramare

Cleopatra’s Miramare (luxury, family-friendly, self-catering) is a gorgeous property with newly renovated suites and a stunning location in Damouchari Bay.

Damma Mia (luxury, family-friendly, self-catering) is another property gem in Damouchari. Right on the beachfront, Damma Mia is a self-standing house blending stone with wood.

Ghermaniko Guesthouse (mid-range, family-friendly, breakfast) is a lovely guest house 2 minutes walking from the water.

Argyroyla Damouchari Studios (mid-range, family-friendly, self-catering) has comfortable rooms with a lovely balcony overlooking the small harbor.

How to Get to Damouchari

Agios Ioannis in Pelion, road signs to Volos.

Pelion Mt is roughly in the middle of mainland Greece, so you can reach it from everywhere by car. It doesn’t work as a day trip, and 2 days is too little if you are traveling from Athens.

Reaching Volos, the major town before you start your trip to Pelion, either from Athens or Thessaloniki is easy. The town is connected through modern highways (326 km north of Athens, taking about 3-4 hours to drive, and 206 km south of Thessaloniki, with a travel time of 2-2.5 hours).

Damouchari is located 49 km east of Volos town, accessible via a relatively narrow road with numerous twists and turns. The trip takes approximately 1 hour and offers scenic views of the Pelion region. It’s important to note that, apart from the summer months, this route can experience foggy conditions in certain areas.

What best to do in Pelion Greece, Panoramic view of Volos town.
Volos

Here are the different ways to reach Damouchari:

  1. By car – The easiest way to travel to Pelion is definitely by car. We always book with Discover Cars and recommend them.
  2. By KTEL buses (public) – Each region in Greece has its website. As Pelion belongs to the Magnesia region you can find info for buses from Athens or Thessaloniki and also local buses connecting the villages here.
  3. By Guided Tour – I have found this private tour of a great Greek company with new Mercedes cars leaving from Athens (they have free airport pick up and return!). Check out the 3-Day tour to Pelion here. This is the easiest and most convenient way to travel from the comfort of a new car.

Pelion, Sporades

Skiathos main town and port in the Sporades islands in Greece.
Skiathos

Pelion is a year-round destination perfect for summer vacation and winter as it is home to a ski resort in Agriolefkes. From Pelion and its port, Volos you can get to a stunning cluster of islands, Sporades.

The Sporades Islands include Skiathos, Skopelos, Alonisos, and Skyros, all beautiful and worth a visit. Combining a visit to Volos and the Pelion with a week or two in the Sporades is the perfect Greek vacation!

What is the best time to visit Pelion?

The peak season in Pelion falls between June and August, offering warm weather and vibrant activity. However, shoulder seasons (April-May and September-October) provide pleasant weather with fewer crowds, making them ideal for those seeking a more relaxed experience.

Is Damouchari suitable for families?

Crystal-clear haven: Dive into the refreshing embrace of Damouchari's Aegean waters..

Absolutely! Damouchari’s relaxed atmosphere, safe beaches, and proximity to nature make it an ideal destination for families.

What Facilities Are There?

Open during the summer season you will find 3 taverns with classic Greek cuisine, a café-canteen with light homemade meals, a small grocery store, and a shop with clothes and Greek handmade products.

Quick Tips about Visiting Pelion

  • You should spend at least 3-7 days in Pelion which will give you ample time to explore many of the villages both the mountainous and the seaside ones.
  • Every 24th of June the ancient folk custom of Klidonas Cledonas is celebrated in Agios Ioannis in a festive event.
  • No need to book any restaurants or taverns unless you are with a large group of people (more than 20), it is better to give them notice in advance.
  • The beaches might be slightly cooler than Cyclades or Crete and a bit wavier on certain days.
  • Some useful items to have with you in Pelion Mt are good hiking boots if you are going to do hiking, a light jacket for the evening (it is a mountain after all), organic sunscreen, a white linen shirt, a fantastic CUPSHE Bikini, and a UPF sun hat.

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Did you Go to Damouchari in Pelion?

Did you manage to go to Pelion? What were the best things you did in the area? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear whether I managed to get it onto your bucket list! 🙂

Travel Guides to the other Pelion Villages

If you’re looking for deeper information, check out my in-depth Pelion Villages travel guides for a ton of details on accessing all these places.

Essential Travel Info for Greece

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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