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Wednesday 28 June 2017

Skiathos Holiday Highlights

Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton? at the Old Port of Skiathos
We're back from the Greek island of Skiathos. It's a lovely relaxing break for those who like good food, boats, pretty scenery, and, if you have kids, safe swimming in calm turquoise waters.
Skiathos is tiny, around seven miles long, and there isn't much in the way of historical artifacts and ruins, or much to do if the weather is bad --- which it was for our first two days  (unheard of!).

There are a couple of musts: go on a Mamma Mia cruise, which will take you to the nearby island of Skopelos where most of the film was made, and you can climb the steps to the church. And, for Mamma Mia overload, watch the film in the open air cinema in Skiathos - a fun experience. Hiring a boat will give you access to some beautiful and deserted beaches which are not easily accessed by road.

Skirt and sandals: Marks & Spencer; top: Warehouse; bag, Accessorize

The Food

We always stay on a bed and breakfast basis when we go on a summer holiday - quite challenging to find nowadays because most hotels want to lock you in with all-inclusive or half board. At the Kassandra Bay Resort & Spa it's very easy to get into the main town - a few minutes on a water taxi from the beach. We also dined a few times in the resort's a la carte restaurant, which was excellent. On the beach at Vassilias there's a newly opened taverna called Rada, owned by the people who run Olive Thea. We had lunch there a few times - very good fresh seafood - and I was disappointed to miss Goldie Hawn, who was there one day (she owns a villa on the island).

Some of the best restaurants in Skiathos Town are owned by expats and although they're a little more pricey than the tavernas, they do have very good food and wine. I recommend The Windmill, and booking the honeymoon table well in advance; this is a table just for two, high up in the windmill with fantastic views. The staff approach the table via two wooden doors that fly open like a Punch and Judy show.

The Final Step and the lively Italian / Greek restaurant Lo & La are also fantastic: the Final Step also gives great views over the bay, and Lo & La overlooks the busy old port where you can watch the water taxis arriving and admire the private yachts.
A tasty calamari starter from The Windmill Restaurant, Skiathos
Crispy calamari starter at The Windmill Restaurant, Skiathos

A mini artwork: beetroot stack starter from The Windmill Restaurant, Skiathos
Beautiful beetroot and apple starter at The Windmill restaurant,. Skiathos
The Olive Thea restaurant is very high up in the hills (below) so you have the most amazing views, plus it is very beautiful with its table linen, crockery and lanterns. Their driver will pick you up and take you back which is very handy because it would be difficult to find.
Drink in that view: Is This Mutton's Gail Hanlon at Olive Thea, Skiathos
Fantastic views at Olive Thea

A strawberry mille feuille dessert from Olive Thea, Skiathos
Strawberry millefeuille, Olive Thea, Skiathos

From the a la carte restaurant at the Kassandra Bay Resort, a shrimp salad starter
Shrimp salad starter at the Kassandra Bay Resort a la carte restaurant 

The Boats

From my sunbed on the beach I used binoculars to watch the various ships passing by. I knew all the different times when I could expect the streamlined Aegean Flying Dolphin and Flying Cat 4, or the big hulks of the Hellenic Seaways and Aqua ferries. Most of these vessels are travelling between Skiathos and the neighbouring islands of Skopelos and Ionissos, plus Thessaloniki and Volos, the second city.

A huge bonus which gave me great excitement was the arrival of Europa 2, voted the world's best cruise liner. This luxury German cruise liner dropped anchor in the bay and stayed all day, with motorized boats going backwards and forwards with passengers. Its very good website gave me the schedule for the 10 day cruise and even a webcam.

The picture was taken quite a way away, from our hotel balcony.
In front of an island, Europa 2 cruise liner in the bay of Skiathos, Greece

The Outfits

Mr Mutton was pressed into service to photograph each evening's outfit and I shared these on Instagram. Skiathos is quite a casual island but I like to dress up just a bit for dinner, even if it sometimes makes me stand out like a sore thumb! Here's a selection of the outfits. There's a "special" to come on July 3 for the next #5Over50 Challenge.
Is This Mutton's Gail Hanlon in outfits worn on holiday in summer 2017
left to right: jeans, Boden; gold mules, Marks & Spencer; top, Warehouse. Rose gold sequin top and cream skirt, both old; print trousers, Marks and Spencer, blue chiffon top Coast (old); duck egg blue print top, Asos, sandals Marks and Spencer (old) and white jeans, Boden. Sunglasses: Ray Ban.

The Cats

When we were at Kassandra Bay last year we were acquainted with a cat who lives in the grounds and her three kittens. This year it appears she only had one black and white kitten, but another mature female was there too with her lively litter of two or three. John managed to snap them in their hiding place  (he isn't a cat person by the way).

The Stone

When we were reunited with our favourite front row position on the beach, I was amazed to find The Stone was still resting by the two sun beds. Over the next few days, we weren't always able to get those two sun beds and the stone demonstrated its many uses. Below, in a children's sand castle.
It was handy as a foot rest, and also to prop my Kindle on when I was lying on my front. It was also used as a weight to make sure towels didn't fly off the sun bed.
Sharing this post with Style with a Smile at Style Splash, Turning Heads Tuesday at Elegantly Dressed and Stylish, Fabulous Friday at A Pocketful of Polka Dots, Fashion Should Be Fun, Fancy Friday at Nancy's Fashion Style, and Top of the World Style at High Latitude Style.

Finally, if you're wondering where Mr Mutton is, well I'm appalled that we don't have one photo of us together! But here he is, in a shirt which only makes an appearance on holiday.
Mr Mutton relaxes on holiday 


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  1. Looks like a lovely holiday break Gail. The food looks delicious! Pastry is my thing! xx

    1. It was soooo relaxing - particularly after the walking holiday that Mr Mutton made me do!

  2. Loved following your holiday on IG. Part of a holiday like that is the dressing up a bit for dinner and smelling good after a day on the beach.
    So I say continue and ignore the dress of others if smartening up works for you and me. Because you looked so fresh and pretty each day of your holiday. The handsome Mr M is looking like he can carry off that shirt, no probs!

    1. You have made his day!! Thanks for the lovely comments.

  3. Oh I'm so jealous - that food looks Heaven! Super post Gail, I bet you have a fantastic holiday. That cruise sounds wonderful too, love a bit of Mamma Mia! Good wishes to you. x Jacqui

  4. It was heavenly and now I have a few more pounds to shed!

  5. Oh that all looks fantastic Gail! And so relaxed! I love your first skirt btw, fabulous!

  6. What a great post and a fab holiday Gail! I'm a huge Mama Mia fan and would love to take a break there to soak up the vibe.

    Catch up soon x

  7. The ruffles on the side and hem are so unexpected. Nice twist. Thanks for linking up to Top of the World Style.

  8. How what a beautiful post! The mean look amazing and your outfits are perfect! Thank you for joining the Ladies Who Link UP!

  9. I love that fun skirt and that clutch with the bow. Your pictures of the food are making me hungry. Beautiful! Thank you for linking up with the Fabulous
    Friday. ;)


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