Athos and Aristotelian Area every year revives the most qualitive cultural greek fest: Aristoteleia.
Their history counts thousands years ago, when the greatest Greek philosopher composed on the holy hill of Stageira his own cosmo-theory, so as to become later the teacher of Alexander the Great, and founder of lots of philosophical views, which until nowadays lead the world.
What else to do?
You will enjoy to your soul’s content the numerous cultural events, the tens of festivals, get to know the local customs and the age-long traditions, the local folklore and participate in the ceremonies that revive these old traditions. All this will bring a whole new world in front of your eyes, and will satisfy even the most demanding traveler!
There are numerous and wide-varying night concerts in moon-drenched beaches or accessible archeological sites on a full-moon night and in the old stone-paved streets of villages.
In winter, the atmosphere becomes more idyllic: festivals and customs for Christmas and New Year’s Eve, Carnival and Easter “travel” our guests in nostalgic times and evoke memories of the Greek authenticity!
Moreover, there is a rather intense nightlife: bars, beach bars, cafes, lounge cafes, clubs – all that a traveler needs to have fun in a typically Greek way!
Cultural events during the year that we suggest to you:
The leading cultural institution of the area!
Dozens of cultural events, which start every year by the greatest day of the year, on June 21 and end on the 20th of next June, making an annual multi-cultural event, which goes beyond the usually and passes into the realm of magic, the great, the beautiful and the true.
Musical and theatrical events, sports, music academies, art, poetry nights..all together in an extraordinary annual meeting, which “runs” in high speed to revive all celebrations, organized to honor Aristotle, the Great philosopher.
Come in the summer and all seasons.
Every time is simply magnificent!
At the local festivities you will celebrate at the rhythm of the original Greek feast, which has the magical ability to pass through the mood of all attendees and to overwhelm the human senses.
Indulge in the relaxation caused by any such festivity, drink plenty of local wine and ouzo and feel Greece in every cell!
- On 18th of January, the celebration of St. Athanasios at Stanos, where a series of events take place, all related to the local tradition.
- On 9th of March, at Gomati, where is celebrated the memory of 40 Martyrs and are conducted events of religious character.
- On 25th of March the celebration of the Holy Monastery of the Annunciation at Olympiada.
- On the day of St George celebration, at Varvara, numerous traditional events, accompanied with food supply (kourmpani)
- On the same day, Neohori celebrates its patron Saint.
- On Easter Tuesday, Megali Panagia, Stageira, and Varvara celebrate the chapels of St. Raphael, when in Ierissos and Arnea celebrate the chapels of Zoodocho Pigis.
- On 2nd of May, the celebration of St Athanasios, whose events take place at the churches of Megali Panagia, Stanos (also celebrated May Day), Neohori and Varvara.
- On 20th of May, the celebration of St Nikolaos of the mountain, at Stratoni, where a great feast takes place, combined with the sense of the nature.
- On the day of Holy Spirit celebration, at Ouranoupoli take place various folklore events, which because of the holiday weekend, attract lots of visitors. On the same day, Gomati celebrates with its chapel of Holy Trinity.
- On 29th of June, Ierissos celebrates its chapel for Apostles Peter and Paul
- On July 5, Paleohori celebrates St Athanasios the Athonite, and on this occasion the residents organise various folklore events.
- On July 7, Olympiada celebrates St. Kiriaki. Numerous of events are being organised and conducted in the village during the whole previous week. Among them, the famous “Feast of Musssels”, which attracts visitors from the whole Macedonia and from European countries as well.
- On July 20, Ierissos celebrates Prohet Elias, organising a big festival a few miles outside the village. On the same day, Prophet Elias is being celebrated at Gomati and Neohori. Feasts, dance, folklore events compose the summer character of the destination, which always attract crowds of visitors!
- On July 26, at Arnea, the great and famous festival to honor the memory of St. Paraskevi. Thousands of people gather at the homonym park to attend the liturgy, to celebrate, to have fun, and dance at the sound of folklore music, which sounds all night constantly, keeping the city alive at every point.
- On July 27, Ierissos honors the memory of St. Panteleimon, organizing a big folk festival.
- On 15th of August, at Megali Panagia, takes place the biggest festival of the region. Thousands of people gather and overnight at the holy temple, forming an alive chain from people, waiting to worship the Holy icone. Later they celebrate at the squares, the streets, and the alleys of the village until the morning.
- On August 23, at Nea Roda, the residents celebrate the 9 days of Virgin Mary, and organise an overnight folk festival, usually accompanied by feasts dedicated to fish, such as “The Sardine Feast”, or “The anchovies Feast”, gathering crowds of visitors.
- The next day, on August 24, at Arnea take place events, where the residents commemorate St. Kosmas Aitolos.
- On September 1, Stanos honors the local St. Haido and organises events than last even for a week!
- On September 8, at Ierissos, Stageira, and Megali Panagia celebrate the Nativity of Virgin Mary and organise cultural and folklore events.
- On Novemebr 1, Arnea celebrates the memory of Saints Anargyroi, which coincides with the celebration of the city’s liberation by the Turks.
- On November 8, Paleohori celebrates the Great Archangels and organises celebrations.
- On December 4, Stratoni celebrates the memory of the patron saint of mining, St. Varvara, which is always accompanied by multi-days festivals and the opening of Christmas Fairy Tale Land (Paramithohora)
- On December 6, Ierissos celebrates the patron saint for its seamen and the sailors, St Nicolaos, and Stratoniki its saint patron as well.
- On December 8, Arnea and Stageira celebrate St. Modestos
Η γιορτή του μυδιού στην Ολυμπιάδα (GR)
Διοργανώνεται στην Ολυμπιάδα στις 6 Ιουλίου, παραμονή της Αγίας Κυριακής (πολιούχου του γραφικού χωριού) και συνοδεύεται από παραδοσιακά και πολιτιστικά δρώμενα, τα οποία διοργανώνονται από τα μέλη των δραστήριων συλλόγων του χωριού!
Οι κάτοικοι προετοιμάζουν μυδομεζέδες και τους προσφέρουν στους επισκέπτες μαζί με ντόπιο κρασί και τσίπουρο (η Ολυμπιάδα φημίζεται για την παραγωγή των πιο νόστιμων μυδιών που έχετε ποτέ γευθεί). Με τον τρόπο αυτό τιμούν τη θάλασσα για τα δώρα που τους προσφέρει, προβάλλουν το σήμα κατατεθέν τοπικό τους προϊόν (τα μύδια) και προωθούν την τοπική παράδοση, που έχει βαθιές ρίζες στις δικές τους αλησμόνητες πατρίδες!
Χορωδίες, μουσικές, συγκροτήματα παραδοσιακών και ελληνικών χορών, κέφι, χορός, τραγούδι…, όλα σε ατμόσφαιρα άκρως ελληνική και καλοκαιρινή…, μπροστά στη θάλασσα που καθρεφτίζει τον ξάστερο ουρανό αλλά και ……κάτω από τη σκιά της ελληνιστικής πόλης των Σταγείρων!
Απλά ζήστε το!
This event takes place every second Christmas day at Stanos, attracting hundreds of visitors. The inhabitants offer the meat of pork, and treat the guests, with chops, tsigarides, and sausages. All goodies are accompanied by sweet or semi-sweet local wine and raki. The orchestra is set at the central square, playnig traditional music, creating an incredibly celebration, full of scents, colors and flavours. The custom is an old one, from the times that each house had its own pig, which was bred throughout the year, so as to ensure the meat for the Christmas celebration.
It is really worthy to participate and trust us- every year you will look forward to the second day of Christmas.
Organised in lots of the area’s villages, providing a means of expression of the people, who they say they do know how to laugh, have fun, celebrate, to regenerate and hope! It attracts many visitors, adding joy in the cold of the winter and giving life to the area.
Come to this celebration, take part at the carnival parades and become part of the local carnival mood!
Kleidonas at Ouranoupoli
On June 24 the church celebrates the birth of John the Baptist, giving his name to the whole June, as “Ai Gianni” or “or Ai Gianniti”.
Along with the religious part, the celebration is being connected with customs referred to the pagan antiquity, associated with the summer solstice, or the sunflower. One of these is Kleidonas, characterized by the lightning of the fire and other prophetic-magical rituals, attempting to “blackmail” for good luck and health.
You will also enjoy a wonderful meeting of refugees clubs with dances and songs from Minor Asia, which will excite you. The event will end at the square, where all will become an unforgettable meeting!
Konstantinos & Eleni celebration at Ouranoupolis
On the eve of the big celebration, the Holy Icon is being processed around the village. The Icon comes from the memorable homelands of the refugees, so much elaborated adorned with beads, with a way that only the women residents know.
Accompanied by the sounds of the Philharmonic, the residents wander around the village. The celebrations are being completed at the end of the day with local delicacies, wine and raki, offered to the visitors and the participants.
If you have already visited Ouranoupoli during this period, then you do know of what we are narrating of. If not, then you must see and feel it. Residents welcome you warmly, and you become part of their society, having fun in front of Prosforiou Tower, which creates a unique scene of aesthetic and religious tradition.
The events at Ouranoupoli mark the start of the summer!
Combine your visit with a short vacation and you will feel calm, gazing at Mount Athos’ Gulf, the fish boats, the magic sunset-and right across- the verdant island of Ammouliani!
On Easter Tuesday, at Ierissos, is being organised the representaton of the massacre of 400 local residents by the Turks, at the location “Mavro Aloni”. At this point, in 1821, during Halkidiki’s revolution, the Turks under the command of Yusuf Sintiki Bei, promised in a devious way, a general amnesty to those who would be given in him. After they surrended, believing his words, he forced under the threat of their swords them to dance. At every turn of the dance, the swords of the Turks slaughtered each time a dancer. Since then and every year, in order to commemorate this inhuman sacrifice, on the third day of the Easter, at Mavro Aloni, locals and visitors pray for lost victims and then they dance, bringing hands together. The dance is called Kageleftos and depicts the massacre. It a slow dance, like the hesitant steps of the victims. The song is full of allusions to the desired freedom, and for many years this custom was taking place at the presence of the Turks, singing bitter words, that could not other way say freely. At the last part of the song, the first two dancers join hands, creating an arch, representing the swords of the Turks. From this arch pass all the dancers twice. Each part of the song is being sung alternatively by men and women.
photo from the archive of Kyttaro (www.kyttaro.eu)
Opened throughout December, giving joy not only to the youngs. It is a Christmas village, built in the lovely park of the beach, consisting of fairy-lit houses, full of candies, melodies and gifts, a place full of toys and Christmas world’s songs, attracting thousands of visitors every single year. “Paramithohora” gives life to the whole area and the Christmas season. It is worthy to mention that it is a voluntary effort by the residents, who envisioned the development the culture and tradition, as a boost for the tourism sector. Visit Paramithohora, alone or with your children, and be sure to ask from Santa to bring you every year at this beautiful fairy tale village!
Easter at Arnea
Easter at Arnea is being celebrated with a great pomp: on Good Friday the two epitaphs are processed in the paved paths and the cobblestone streets of the village, under the sounds of the Philarmonic, until the light of the Resurrection comes at the City Hall Square. The atmosphere is flooded by the scents of the candles, the incense and the spring flowers.
On Easter Sunday everything celebrates! At the central square the Easter Stand is set and the residents offer the visitors red eggs and pastries, wishing “Hronia Polla”!
On the morning of Easter Monday, the tradition revives under the custom of “Kantari”. People hang a large scale on the perennial tree of the central square and weigh those who weigh more kilos. It is about a very popular custom, which annually attracts many people, since for the old times, the scale was a proof for those that didn’t fast during the Lent.
On Easter Tuesday, at the chapel of Prophet Elias revives the old custom of “Koutsmanous”. The participants are dressed in traditional costumes and the horse riders with old guns, set off from the central cobbled square and head to the chapel. When they arrive, the church’s icons are being processed and then the dance “Koutsmanos” begins. Reviving this custom is being completed with shooting, having as targers red eggs. Later in the noon, participants and visitors head to the church of St. Paraskevi and the park, where they savour delicious Eastern tastes.
One other custom of Easter Tuesday is “Sousaritsa”, where the participants hold a red egg competing each other, rolling over the grass, but without breaking it.
Πάσχα στην Ουρανούπολη (GR)
Το Πάσχα στην Ουρανούπολη σηματοδοτεί την έναρξη της θερινής τουριστικής περιόδου σε ολόκληρη την προ του Άθω περιοχή. Κλίμα αληθινής θρησκευτικής γιορτής και ταυτόχρονα κατάνυξης, ανακατεμένο με τη μυρωδιά της ανοιξιάτικης θαλασσινής αύρας, δημιουργεί συρροή επισκεπτών από την Ελλάδα και τις ευρωπαϊκές χώρες, που κατακλύζουν τις τοπικές ξενοδοχειακές μονάδες.
Ένα μήνα πριν το Πάσχα, γυναίκες του χωριού προετοιμάζουν τον περίτεχνο στολισμό του επιταφίου, ο οποίος ολοκληρώνεται τη Μεγάλη Πέμπτη αργά το βράδυ. Πρόκειται για μοναδικό έργο τέχνης – μια παράδοση φερμένη από την αλησμόνητη πατρίδα της Μικρασίας – που διαιωνίζεται από γενιά σε γενιά. Τη Μεγάλη Παρασκευή το βράδυ πραγματοποιείται η περιφορά του στους δρόμους του χωριού, ενώ η Ανάσταση το βράδυ του Σαββάτου στην κεντρική πλατεία, μπροστά στον Πύργο του Προσφορίου, αποτελεί εντυπωσιακή έκφραση χαράς και γιορτής! Την Κυριακή το πρωί πραγματοποιείται η περιφορά της δεύτερης Ανάστασης καθώς και το κάψιμο του Ιούδα, έθιμο φερμένο (και αυτό) από τις αλησμόνητες πατρίδες των Ουρανουπολιτών.
Χαρίστε λοιπόν στον εαυτό σας πασχαλινές διακοπές στην περιοχή της Ουρανούπολης! Συνδυάστε τες με επισκέψεις στα προσκυνηματικά μνημεία της περιοχής, πραγματοποιήστε τον παράπλου του Αγίου Όρους, θαυμάστε τη Μονή Ζυγού και τον Πύργο του Προσφορίου, «πεταχτείτε» μέχρι την Αμμουλιανή, όπου κι εκεί η παράδοση συναντά την έντονη τουριστική δραστηριότητα και απολαύστε την τοπική γαστρονομία σε όλο της το φάσμα, το μεγαλείο και τις εκδοχές!