Hot yoga in an inflatable, purple-hued dome is one of the best ways to limber up your body in preparation for a day of adventure. The Hackney outpost of HotPod Yoga is an easy taxi ride from London City Airport, and the perfect way to set yourself up for a weekend of adventure on the stunning Greek island of Skiathos.
Catch a boat to Lalaria beach
You’ll need to catch a boat from Skiathos Town to reach the secluded Lalaria beach, accessible only by sea – but locals and a small number of savvy travellers know that it’s worth it to escape the crowds. Rugged rock formations and isolated sea caves distinguish the coast here, on the north-eastern tip of the island, and the turquoise waters and white pebbles make it a very photogenic spot.
Explore the countryside on horseback
Some of Skiathos’s back roads and trails are best appreciated on horseback, and the Skiathos Horse Riding Centre will kit you out and either set you loose solo or take you on a guided exploration. There’s no lovelier way to get your bearings than trekking through the Mandraki forest, absorbing views of the island’s coast along the way.
Kick back on Kanapitsa beach
Just a 7km bus ride from Skiathos Town, this popular Blue Flag beach in Kolios is one of the best-served stretches of sand when it comes to bars and restaurants. Start with a dip, then dine on calamari, and perhaps rent a pedalo afterwards, to explore the secluded coves that fringe the coast.
Get out on foot
Among active travellers, Skiathos is famed for offering excellent hiking, with fairytale forests, rolling hills and lush river valleys all criss-crossed with trails. Well-marked pathways take you to parts of the island only accessible by foot, and many take you past iconic sights such as the Evangelistria Monastery.
Tour the atmospheric Monastery of Evangelistria
Skiathos’s countryside is not short of churches and monasteries, but the Monastery of Evangelistria is the most awe-inspiring of the pack. Nestled among ancient vineyards and olive groves, around three miles north of Skiathos Town, the monastery dates back to the 18th century, and was used as a hideout for refugees during the Greek War of Independence. It was here, in 1807, that the official Greek flag was raised for the very first time.
Dine in a traditional taverna in the Old Town
Return to town to get happily lost in the maze of alleyways of the ancient quarter, before ducking into an authentic taverna to sample local favourites such as pan-fried prawns, lamb chops or suckling pig. Taverna Alexandros is a particular favourite with the locals; try to sit outside in the shade of the mulberry tree, and you’ll be treated to impromptu recitals by local musicians. Dining on grilled lamb and huge plates of feta-studded salad, London couldn’t feel further away.
With a central location and check-in just 20 minutes before departure, you’ll have plenty of time to relax before you fly from London City Airport.
British Airways flies three times a week from London City Airport to Skiathos during the summer months. Find out more at ba.com/londoncity