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Holidays in Lesbos
Lesbos holidays win new hearts every summer for the classically beautiful beaches and daily Mediterranean sunshine holidaymakers have come to love. Upbeat beach resorts and colourful towns invite long, relaxing days spent wandering the seafront, laying on the beach or dining in a Greek taverna. Beyond the coast, Lesbos may surprise you. Historic towns and fascinating medieval sites sit between miles of rural landscapes, dense with hilly groves growing olives and figs.
July and August for the longest hours of sunshine and warm sea temperatures.
Mytilene International Airport or Thessaloniki International Airport (SKG) and transfer to Lesbos by ferry.
Book a Thomas Cook holiday to Lesbos to experience golden beaches, medieval castles and hot springs all on one spectacular island.
On Lesbos’ northern coast are a handful of beach resorts known for their spectacular scenery. Anaxos’ beach is sheltered by blossoming green hills, thick pines and fragrant fruit groves, creating a peaceful environment for relaxing on the beach. Around 10km east is the traditional town of Molyvos. The ideal day trip location it’s a great place to hunt for locally-made gifts and Greek specialties. Down on the south coast, beach resorts like Skala Kalloni are popular for the top choice of family-friendly hotels close to the beach, and a pleasant town centre filled with shops and places to eat.
Get into the Lesbos way of life with a stroll around Molyvos’ steep little town, dotted with interesting galleries and Greek tavernas, and the watchful eye of the medieval Molyvos castle. Head down to the bustling harbour and catch a boat, or else venture along the coast to find the island’s best beaches. Peaceful and golden, the beaches are perfect for a relaxing afternoon under the hot Greek sun, or else zipping across the water on some jet skis. If you want to spend a day exploring, visit the haunting Petrified Forest to see trees that have fossilized after millions of years.
Lesbos’ beach resorts are modern and family-friendly, yet still retain a little traditional, small-town charm. Beaches like Anaxos are a wonderful place to relax with the bonus of having shops and places to eat close by. The golden sand shelves into safe, shallow water that is lovely and warm in the summer. The beaches have plenty of sun loungers to go around plus places to buy a cold drink or an ice cream. There are lots of beach activities in Lesbos for anyone up for something energetic – many beaches have top water sports facilities where you can hire water skis or paddle about on sea kayaks.
If you fancy exploring beyond the beach, towns like Molyvos are the best way to get a feel for the traditional and historic side of the island. The town is dominated by its fascinating castle, visible from anywhere in the town and shaded by pine trees. The castle is hundreds of years old and today hosts all kinds of cultural events and concerts. Wandering down from the castle, Molyvos has an upbeat buzz with narrow, cobbled streets that are fun to explore. One of the best places in Lesbos for shopping, keep an eye out for craft and jewellery shops selling handmade trinkets.
Some of Lesbos’ more unusual attractions are out in its rural landscapes. The island is home to a petrified forest – million-year-old tree trunks that have turned to stone and become fossils. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the forest is eerie but fascinating and even has its own museum. The island is also known for its hot springs, and one of the best places in Lesbos to test their natural healing powers is the Eftalou springs near Molyvos. Swim in the warm springs or sit on its rocks to see if the minerals work their magic.
Explorers: Venture out into Lesbos’ countryside to explore its ancient petrified forest and healing hot springs.
Sightseers: As well as its natural attractions, Lesbos is home to historic towns like Molyvos, dominated by an ancient castle and architecture.
Beach lovers: Enjoy Lesbos’ spotless golden beaches and mild waters that are ideal for swimming.
Language: The language spoken in Lesbos is Greek
Currency: The currency used in Lesbos is the Euro (€)
Local time: Lesbos is 2 hours ahead of GMT/UK time
Fly to: Mytilene International Airport or Thessaloniki International Airport (SKG) and transfer to Lesbos by ferry.
Flight time from UK: Approximately 3.5 hours.
Tourist Information: Further Lesbos tourist information can be found at www.visitgreece.gr
Visa & Health: Before you travel, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece for recommendations and advice on visas and health for your holiday to Lesbos.
Temperature: Summertime average of 26°C.
Best time to visit: July and August for the longest hours of sunshine and warm sea temperatures.
Lesbos has a Mediterranean climate, but with milder summers than some parts of Greece. The weather warms up around May and in July and August, the mercury stays firmly in the mid to high 20s (°C) – perfect beach weather.
By car: Hiring a car is the best way to get around the island if you’re planning a lot of excursions.
There are numerous affordable car hire companies located in Lesbos, and the roads on the island are generally good.
By bus: A regular bus and tram service operates across the island, with multiple daily buses in larger resorts like Molyvos. If you need an easy way to get down to the beach, the bus is the best way.
By taxis: Taxis in Lesbos are yellow or grey and are required to use a meter. Travelling short journeys by taxi or for transport to the airport is cheap and efficient.
Women’s Festival: Lesbos is the birthplace of the Greek poet Sappho of Eressos. In her honour, ever September the island hosts the International Women’s Festival, a two week event that includes both Greek and international musicians and artists in celebration of women in the arts. The festivities also include concerts, feasts and boat trips.
A day at the races: The town of Kalloni plays host to many of Lesbos’ events and festivals, most notably the festival of Saint Trinity in early July. This three-day celebration includes traditional feasts and horse races.
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