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KNOW BEFORE YOU GO - STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD (foreign office travel advice)

Halkidiki

When to go

As it sits in northern Greece, Halkidiki is cooler than some of the more sultry southern areas of mainland Greece and its islands. It still has a pleasingly hot climate and, due to the three finger-shaped peninsulas, many of the resorts are sheltered in inlets between them.

Peak season for holidays to Halkidiki is from late June to early September, and average temperatures are at their hottest in July at around 26°C. This drops to 19°C in the shoulder season of May and October, so you may wish to travel then if you're planning on doing a lot of walking on your Greece holidays, or prefer a milder temperature.

Home to the Mount Athos monasteries, Halkidiki is a particularly religious area of Greece where you'll have the chance to experience many Greek Orthodox festivals. Between March and August is when the majority of these events occur, including the Tuesday after Easter, St George's Day in April, St John's Day in June and a big celebration across Halkidiki on 15th August.

Health and safety

As with any holiday, you should take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance to cover yourself and family on your trip. It's also a good idea to apply for a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) before leaving the UK as this entitles you to emergency medical treatment on the same terms as Greek nationals. It won't, however, cover you for medical repatriation, ongoing medical treatment or non-urgent treatment.

If you are visiting Halkidiki to take part in sports, including hiking, or watersports, you should make sure your insurance covers this. See our holiday extras page for more information and for the latest health and safety information visit https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece/health.

Passports and visas

British citizens don't need a visa to enter Greece and its islands but must have a valid passport. By law, you must carry your passport with you and may need to show it when paying by credit card. For the most up-to-date passport and visa info, visit https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece/entry-requirements.

Getting around

There are three separate peninsulas in Halkidiki, with Kassandra to the west being the most tourist-focused. The eastern Athos peninsula is home to 20 ancient monasteries with limited public access and some peaceful resorts to the north, while Sithonia in the centre is a scenic, forested getaway.

Flights ground at Thessaloniki International Airport and transfer times vary depending on where you're staying. It takes around 40 minutes to get to the popular resort of Kalithea, halfway down the Kassandra peninsula. Travel times will be around an hour to get to Ouranopolis in the north of Athos and the majority of Sithonia's resorts.

Most tour operators include transfers as part of their package holidays to Halkidiki, so getting to your resort is easy. If you prefer to arrange your own travel, the airport taxi rank is located immediately outside of the arrivals lounge door. You can save on cost by pre-booking taxis.

The public transport network is good in Halkidiki, with the central bus station at Thessaloniki Airport connecting you to each peninsula. Another good way of getting around Halkidiki is by water. Boats are a particularly popular form of transport around the Athos peninsula as you can see the imposing monasteries from the water. The monasteries otherwise have restricted access to males only and by written consent three weeks in advance.

Advice for travellers with children

Halkidiki holidays are centred around its beaches and exploring the natural beauty of the area. There aren't many family-focused attractions, although Waterland is a fun waterpark 15 minutes south of Thessaloniki. Many of the hotels cater very well for children with entertainment and plenty of facilities within their grounds, and there are plenty of All Inclusive Halkidiki options to help you take the stress out of travelling with kids.

For lots to do for all the family, the upmarket resort of Sani has a couple of excellent, large hotels, such as the Sani Beach hotel, providing kids clubs and loads of activities. If you don't wish to travel too far with children to get to your hotel, northern resorts such as Nea Moudania are less than half an hour from the airport.

Electricity

Connector type: Generally round two-pin plugs, marked as southern Europe.

Voltage Info: 230 volts AC, 50Hz.

Emergency information

Call 112 for all emergencies and the operator will put you through to the police, fire brigade or ambulance service. The line is operated in five languages including English.

British Consulate

If you are a victim of crime or affected by a crisis overseas, or if something happens to a relative or partner, contact the British Consulate in Athens.

Address: 1 Ploutarhou Str., 10675 Athens

Email: consular.athens@fco.gov.uk

Telephone: (+30) 210 727 2600

Hospital

General Hospital of Halkidiki, Ippokratous, Poligiros

Telephone: (+30) 2371 023781

Useful links

Halkidiki-Greece.com - News, photos and events information about the island of Halkidiki.

Mysterious Greece - Travel guides covering a range of topics and regions across Greece, including Halkidiki.

Sea Kayak Halkidiki - Boat tours and trips to help you discover the natural beauty that Halkidiki has to offer.