It is a very special place.
Full of stories from the past, great vibes and breathtaking views.
Reaching the highest peak of Skopelos and its Observatory involves two stages.
This is only half the fun of reaching the top. It’s not a place known to too many people.
Even writing about it here, it will still keep it as off-limits for most.
It is a place to go to if you’re feeling more adventurous! You won’t hear about it from many people, other than some locals, (like me).
There are no signs leading you there either. It is, however, a place well worth visiting.
A place that will certainly create a lasting effect on your memories.
Pictures that you will hopefully take from here, will decorate your walls.
For the professional photographer, pictures taken here will definitely be worthy of winning competitions.
This wonderful plateau has a great feeling about it and a positive vibe.
It was a thriving farming community until about the beginning of the ’60s when the last “settlers” ceased farming.
People used to come here from all over mainland Greece for seasonal or yearly work. Some of our ancestors were also a part of this community.
Cultivation included plums of course, (Skopelos is still renowned today for its quality produce of prunes), apples, oranges, resin from the pine trees and a variety of herbs.
This plateau with the remnants of this farming community lays just before you begin your ascend to the Observatory and the highest peak.
Follow the slightly winding path leading to the structure.
One of the best features of the Observatory is the iron cast staircase found at the back, which leads to the top observation point (the 2nd level), at a very steep angle.
Do not let this intimidate you, the stairs are strong and steady enough for you to climb.
Once on top of this terrace, you can easily forget yourself for a long time. It is just you, the endless sky and the beautiful landscape beneath you.
You are now standing on the highest point of Skopelos, (at 684 meters).
On a clear day, (and hopefully, you reached it on a cloudless day), it feels like you can touch the sky.
It feels like, you can just dive off into the deep blue Aegean sea and swim off to the tiny deserted islands in the distance.
It will feel like you are on top of the world.
Looking down onto the entire east coast of Skopelos, and the neighboring island of Alonissos ahead.
The west coast, populated by some of the most beautiful beaches in Greece.
Looking down onto the sleepy village of Elios, the port of Loutraki and the village of Glossa.
Evia island in the far distance with its tall, pyramid shaped mountain. Skiathos island on your right and in a very clear summer day, mainland Greece and Mt. Olympus too.
If you still have sometime left after gazing the endless horizons take it a step further.
Climb down the ladder, and just continue walking away from the observatory, on a small trail that is barely visible.
You don’t need to go too far, before you see a few tree openings on your left.
Carefully climb on the rocks and at the edge of this ridge, and the view from the valley and the coast below you is just breathtaking.
The Observatory structure was built during the 2nd WW since this was an excellent post to see enemy sightings and suspicious movements in every direction.
It was a painstaking project and it involved many locals and their donkey’s and mules to carry all the building materials that were needed.
It was later used by the local Forestry office.
Again, this was an excellent spot to guard against any forrest fires. We hope to see it refurbished and back to life again very soon for the sake of our lush forests and for the memory of the large, thriving community and our ancestors that were part of this beautiful place.