Flights go direct from Berlin to either Athens or Thessaloniki and take about 2.5 hours (cheapest round trip at present just €50, but these will hike so book, book, book!). We recommend flying to Thessaloniki as it’s a bit closer. However, Athens is a nice place to spend some time, so maybe you’ll come that way…
If you are travelling to the retreat from the UK, there are now direct flights from London Gatwick to Volos (40 minutes from Pinakates) with easyjet beginning summer 2018.
If you are coming from Berlin, we recommend the Berlin – Thessaloniki easyjet flight at 10:20am on the 14th (if you are coming for week 1) or 20th (week 2).
If you are going straight back to Berlin, then we recommend the Ryanair flight at 6:30pm on the 20th (week 1) or 8:30pm on the 26th (week 2).
However, once you’ve seen Pelion you may well want to extend your trip. There is excellent hiking along the coast and mountain village via old stone paths – beautiful but quite strenuous! You could easily hike from village to village for a few days and we can advise you about this if you’d like some suggestions. Alternatively, you might fancy some beach time. If so, then there are few places in the world more beautiful than Damouchari, the little sea-side village where they filmed some of Mamma Mia. Quiet, friendly with just three tavernas and a small village shop, it is the perfect place to relax, swim or do a bit of kayaking or SUP. We highly recommend the lovely rooms and apartments offered by Katerina and her family. You can contact her at email@example.com.
If you are not hiring a hire car (last year 2 participants did, but this is by no means expected), then you can either share a taxi to Pinakates or organise your own onward travel. We will be organising a pick up from Thessaloniki on June 14th and a return on June 20th if enough people would like one. Same goes for the second week (pick up on the 20th and return on the 26th). Please let us know when booking if you would like to be included. This is not included in the price, but is an economical and easy way of continuing your journey. Price depends on how many people are sharing, but last year it was approximately 50 euros each way.
Transfers by public transport from either Athens or Thessaloniki to the nearby town of Volos cost roughly €30-40 return and take 2.5 hours (Thessaloniki) or 4 hours (Athens). We can provide details when you book with us. We definitely recommend the bus over the train, less picturesque but Greek trains sometimes like to stop for no reason for a couple of hours, while the buses are very punctual.
To get from Volos to Pinakates takes about 40 minutes. There are 3 buses a day at 6am, 6:30am and 1pm on Monday-Friday (no buses at weekends). However, it only costs 30 euros in a taxi and we will coordinate sharing with your fellow writers to keep costs down.
Please note, Pinakates is a traditional hilltop village. The coast is a twenty-minute drive away.