Are you planning a trip to Thassos? The beautiful Greek island Thassos, known for its stunning beaches, picturesque villages, and rich history? Well, before you pack your bags and head off to this paradise, there are a few rookie Thassos travel mistakes you should avoid to ensure a smooth and enjoyable vacation.
From driving tips to dining habits, we’ve got you covered. So, let’s dive into the 20 most common mistakes to avoid in Thassos and travel like a pro!
Mistake #1: Thinking of Thassos Just Like a Beach Holiday
One of the biggest Thassos travel mistakes!
When you think of Thassos, the first thing that comes to mind is probably the breathtaking beaches and crystal-clear waters. Names such as Marble Beach, Paradise, Golden Beach or Salonikios. While it’s true that Thassos is a beach lover’s dream, there’s so much more to this island than just sunbathing and swimming.
Don’t make the mistake of limiting your experience to the coast. Venture inland to discover charming mountain villages, ancient ruins, and lush green landscapes. Thassos has much to offer beyond its beaches, so make sure to explore every corner of this gem.
You do not have to drive or often walk far from the coastline to meet its enormous mountains. Hidden within those cliffs lie some of the most magnificent places on this island. Think of remote villages, spectacular waterfalls, forgotten prehistoric caves, or spectacular hikes. Those locations are worth exploring, and you will also often have the whole place just for yourself.
If you want more inspiration, check all the reasons you would love to visit Thassos!
Mistake #2: Trying to see the whole island at once
Thassos may seem small on the map, but don’t be fooled – it’s packed with hidden gems and scenic spots that deserve your time and attention. Trying to see the whole island in a single trip is a rookie mistake many visitors make. Instead of rushing from one end to the other, take your time to savor each location.
Whether it’s the quaint villages nestled in the mountains or the secluded coves along the coastline, slow down and soak in the beauty of each place. Remember, it’s not about ticking off every spot on the map but about creating meaningful memories in the places you visit.
After all, the best experience on the island is settling in one place and allowing yourself to be part of the community. If you want to make the most of your itinerary, here are some suggestions if you plan to stay in Thassos for 4 days, 5 days, or 7 days. Still, I urge you to stay longer and embrace the Thassian lifestyle!
Mistake #3: Being scared to explore & Bringing the wrong footwear: the biggest of the Thassos travel mistakes
One of the biggest mistakes you can make in Thassos is being afraid to explore off the beaten path. While flip-flops might be perfect for the beach, they won’t cut it when exploring the island’s rugged terrain. So, pack comfortable walking shoes or hiking boots, especially if you plan on trekking through the Thassos mountains or visiting ancient sites.
If you are wondering, spending the entirety of your holidays on renowned beaches can make a great holiday. But it is only that good. Why settle on mediocrity when perfection is within arm’s reach? Literally.
You do not have to go far from a popular attraction to discover a relatively unknown village, remote beach, hidden coves, or peaceful retreat. Embrace the spirit of adventure and prepare to wander through rocky trails, cobblestone streets, and uneven paths. Your reward will be stunning views and a deeper connection to the island.
Mistake #4: Being put off from hiring a car and depending mainly on public transport and buses for moving around.
While public transport is available on the island, relying solely on buses and taxis can limit your freedom and flexibility. Don’t make the mistake of being put off from hiring a car. Renting a vehicle is one of the best ways to explore Thassos at your own pace and reach remote areas not easily accessible by bus.
You may hear stories of tourists renting a car and paying a fortune for car damage. Although less common in Thassos, any road accident can turn your long-anticipated holidays into an all-year struggle. But it does not have to be. Everything will be fine if you are cautious and follow the driving rules.
And if you want that extra peace of mind, why not pay some extra bucks to get good insurance for your car? This will save you from a lot of trouble in case of an accident, however significant it is.
If you think renting a car is not worth the money or hassle, think again. There is no better way to see the island’s raw beauty than by hitting the road.
With a car, you can venture off the tourist trail, discover hidden beaches, and enjoy Thassos’s scenic drives. Plus, it’s a great way to experience the island like a local and uncover its best-kept secrets.
Which car rental service is the best to choose?
If you want to rent a car for your trip and look for the best service, I am here to help you! Consider choosing Discover Cars, an international car rental booking service present worldwide. This way, you will find the best car for your trip wherever you are!
Mistake #5: Expecting other drivers to use common sense: one of the most critical Thassos travel mistakes
Driving in Thassos can be an adventure in itself, especially if you’re used to other countries’ traffic rules and driving habits. Expecting other drivers to adhere to common sense might lead to frustration and confusion.
Apart from speeding and unexpected overtakes, locals and some tourists may often put aside their common sense when driving. For example, they may “forget” to indicate they are turning or suddenly stop without warning. Again, as long as you are focused, you will be just fine.
Whereas other drivers may not use common sense, it does not mean you shouldn’t. Put on your seat belt, respect the speed limits, and follow the road markings. Do not forget that these signs are there to keep you safe, not to make you slower.
Hence, stay alert, be patient, and embrace the local driving culture. Adapting to the driving dynamics will make your journey smoother and more enjoyable.
Mistake #6: Forgetting about the goats
Yes, you read that right – don’t forget about the goats! Thassos is home to a large population of free-roaming goats, and you’re likely to encounter them on your travels. You can witness these adorable creatures on the hillsides, crossing rural roads, or even strolling through village streets.
Worry not, however! If you are cautious and aware of your surroundings, you will spot them from a distance and lower your speed in time. Do not forget that those goats were there first before we built those roads trespassing their area.
Although goats are not near villages or towns, you still need to watch for stray cats and other wandering animals; there are many in Thassos. Some rogue sheep often escape the flock and wander off the streets.
As long as you acknowledge and embrace the presence of these charming animals, you’ll be fine. The whole thing is also part of the authentic rural charm of the island. Just remember to drive carefully and watch out for our furry, four-legged friends as you navigate the island’s roads.
Mistake #7: Being Too Nervous When You Drive (You’ll be missing a lot!)
It’s natural to feel slightly nervous when driving to a new and unfamiliar destination, but don’t let that hold you back from exploring the wonders of Thassos. Being too apprehensive behind the wheel can cause you to miss out on breathtaking sights and spontaneous discoveries.
You do not need to be nervous, or you will spoil the fun. You only have to be cautious and sensible. If you get too nervous at any moment, ask your friend or spouse to drive the car. It will be safer for all of you. Take a deep breath, trust your driving skills, and embrace the adventure of navigating the island.
And whether you are in the driving seat or not, be aware of the surroundings. The scenic routes, hidden viewpoints, and unexpected encounters await those willing to step out of their comfort zone and embrace the open road.
The best way to experience Thassos from close by is to rent an ebike. You can cycle in the mountains or tour Thassos on an ebike. To make everything easier, you can now have the e-bike delivered to your accommodation.
Alternatively, join a Thassos e-bike tour and let a guide show you around and share insider info.
Mistake #8: Expecting to Have Dinner Early: one of the most common Thassos travel mistakes
In many parts of the world, dinner is served early in the evening. However, in Greece, especially on the laid-back island of Thassos, the dinner time is much later. Don’t expect to have dinner at your usual hour if you want to live like a local.
In other words, to experience how the locals live, forget the 7 pm dinner. In Greece, 7 pm is time for your afternoon coffee, ideally an iced frappe. If you are wondering what is wrong with us Greeks, remember the list is long. Yet, you never know how cool or convenient something is until you try it.
Thassias eat dinner around 10 pm or later, especially in summer. And there is a good reason for that. If you eat your main meal of the day after work, you cannot do much during your day other than work and eat. So, moving dinner later opens up space for more activities. You can use that approach to visit more places during your holidays.
So, embrace the local dining customs and adjust your schedule to enjoy dinner like a true Thassian. The leisurely pace of evening meals allows you to unwind, savor your food, and soak up the island’s relaxed ambiance. So, let go of the rush and embrace the Mediterranean way of dining.
Mistake #9: Not sleeping during siesta
The concept of siesta is deeply ingrained in Greek culture and has lots to do with eating a later dinner. Thassos is no exception. During the early afternoon, many shops, businesses, and even some restaurants close for a few hours to allow locals to rest and escape the day’s heat.
Not embracing the Greek siesta tradition and trying to carry on with your activities, as usual, can leave you feeling fatigued and out of sync with the island’s rhythm. Take a cue from the locals and use this time to relax, take a nap, or simply unwind in the shade. Embracing the siesta will help you recharge and make the most of your time in Thassos, and give you extra energy in the evenings to connect with the locals!
Mistake #10: Visiting main attractions during rush hours. Prefer early morning and before sunset
Thassos is home to some incredible attractions, from ancient ruins to natural wonders, and you ideally want to visit when there are no crowds. One of the common mistakes visitors make is visiting these landmarks during the busiest hours of the day. Instead, aim to explore the main attractions in the early morning or before sunset, especially if you visit Giola, the natural lagoon of Thassos.
You will avoid the Thassos large tour groups and swarming visitors and witness the sites in the soft, golden light of dawn or dusk, creating a magical and serene atmosphere. So, adjust your schedule, set your alarm, and make the most of the tranquil moments when the island comes alive in a different light.
Mistake #11: Eating Only Greek Salad and Moussaka
While Greek salad and moussaka are undeniably delicious, limiting yourself to these classic dishes would mean missing out on Thassos’s culinary delights. Don’t make the mistake of only ordering familiar dishes – be adventurous and explore the local cuisine. It’s one of the most common Thassos travel mistakes.
From freshly caught seafood to traditional Greek mezedes (appetizers) and sweet honey-drenched desserts, Thassos boasts a diverse and flavorful gastronomic scene. Step out of your comfort zone, indulge your taste buds, and savor the full spectrum of authentic flavors the island offers.
Mistake #12: Going overboard when tipping
Tipping culture varies across different countries, and in Greece, tipping is appreciated but not always expected. One of the common rookie mistakes is going overboard with tipping, especially in touristy areas.
Tipping is not customary in Greece, especially for a small meal or coffee. Although you are expected to tip if you dine at a fine restaurant or tavern, know that the waiters have a salary and the tips are extras. As a result, you do not need to go overboard with it.
At the same time, if you feel that the service the waiter has given you is exemplary, feel free to tip as much as you want. They appreciate the gesture even though they do not expect or demand anything. Once you offer the tip, their smile will be the best reward you can get.
Hence, follow the local tipping norms and consider the level of service before deciding on the tip amount. A modest and sincere gesture of gratitude will be warmly received, and it’s a great way to respect the local customs while enjoying your time in Thassos.
Mistake #13: Not sharing food when dining in a tavern
Dining in a traditional Greek tavern is not just about the food – it’s a social and communal experience that celebrates sharing and togetherness. One of the mistakes visitors make is not embracing the concept of sharing food when dining in a tavern. Don’t be afraid to order and share various dishes with your companions.
This allows you to sample a broader range of flavors and specialties while fostering a convivial atmosphere at the table. So, gather your friends or family, order a selection of mezedes, and revel in the joy of communal dining, which is an integral part of the Greek culinary tradition.
Mistake #14: Having all your meals at the hotel
While it may be convenient to have all your meals at the hotel, doing so means missing out on Thassos’s authentic dining experiences. One of the rookie mistakes to avoid is confining yourself to the hotel’s dining options and not venturing out to explore local eateries and tavernas.
I tell you, that’s one of the most important Thassos travel mistakes, and you will regret it the moment you realize.
The island is teeming with charming restaurants, seaside cafes, and family-owned establishments serving delectable dishes bursting with flavors. Step outside the hotel walls, immerse yourself in the island’s culinary scene, and savor the authentic taste of Thassos.
Mistake #14: Being afraid to drink the tap water
Thassos boasts some of Greece’s freshest water, so there’s no need to be wary of drinking tap water. However, one of the common mistakes visitors make is avoiding tap water and opting for bottled water at all times.
Tap water is drinkable in the whole of the island. The only concern is that it’s high in minerals and can cause upset stomachs if you’re not used to it. To be safe, I suggest you prefer bottled water most of the time, but if you have no alternative, drink tap water; you’ll be fine.
PS: you can always head over to the Thassian vineyards.
Mistake #15: Forgetting Sunscreen Protection
With its sun-drenched beaches and clear skies, Thassos is a heaven for sunbathing. However, forgetting to protect your skin from the powerful Mediterranean sun one of the most dangerous Thassos travel mistakes that can lead to painful sunburns and discomfort. Make sure to pack and apply sunscreen liberally throughout the day, especially if you’re spending time outdoors.
Whether you’re lounging on the beach, strolling through the village streets, or exploring ancient ruins, sunscreen is your best defense against the sun’s rays. So, lather up, stay protected, and enjoy the island’s sunny embrace without worrying about sun damage.
Mistake #16: Doing Always What the Guidebook Suggests
Guidebooks are valuable resources for travelers, offering insights and recommendations for exploring a destination. However, following them to the letter can lead to a cookie-cutter experience that lacks spontaneity and personalized discovery.
One of the mistakes to avoid in Thassos is always doing what the guidebook suggests. While seeking inspiration from guidebooks is great, leave room for lucky encounters and off-the-beaten-path explorations. Strike a balance between guidebook highlights and your own instincts, and you’ll uncover hidden treasures and authentic experiences that go beyond the pages of any guidebook.
Mistake #17: Packing too much
Overpacking is a common pitfall for many travelers, and Thassos is no exception. Carrying excessive luggage can weigh you down and limit your mobility. That’s especially true if you plan on hopping between beaches, villages, and attractions. Instead of packing too much, opt for versatile, lightweight clothing that suits the island’s laid-back vibe.
The peace of mind you will get from bringing lots of clothes is nothing compared to the discomfort of carrying a piece of hefty baggage around the island. Pack light, and your holidays in Thassos can open up a world of adventure! If you’re up for a challenge, only bring one backpack. It is not as difficult as it initially sounds.
Remember that casual and comfortable attire is the norm in Thassos, so there’s no need for formal or elaborate outfits. Streamline your packing list, prioritize essentials, and leave room for souvenirs and mementos you’ll undoubtedly want to bring back from your Thassos adventures.
One thing you do not want to forget to pack is your mood. Keep positive, avoid the above mistakes, and enjoy your holidays. You are in paradise, after all!
Mistake #18: Not visiting the smaller seaside and mountain villages
Sticking to the beach is one of the most common Thassos travel mistakes.
While the main tourist hubs of Thassos are undeniably captivating, one of the rookie mistakes to avoid is overlooking the smaller seaside and mountain villages that dot the island. These charming and less-visited locales offer a glimpse into the authentic island life, Thassos’ rich history, and the warm hospitality of the locals.
Take the time to venture off the well-trodden paths and discover the hidden gems in the island’s interior. Whether it’s a tranquil fishing village by the sea or a picturesque mountain hamlet, these lesser-explored destinations hold the essence of Thassos and promise unforgettable encounters.
One of the best things you can do in a fishing village is join a fishing boat trip and check how the locals fish. Plus, view the coastline and remote shores from the water.
Speaking of boats. Have you checked out our guide to Thassos Ferries?
Mistake #19: Flushing Toilet Paper
This may shock many, but you are not supposed to flush toilet paper down the toilet in Thassos. This is true in all Greek islands and most cities in the country.
The plumbing infrastructure is not designed to handle flushed toilet paper. Greek sewage pipes are too thin to handle any amount of toilet paper. Flushing toilet paper can lead to clogged pipes and plumbing issues, causing inconvenience and potential damage. Thankfully, garbage bins will always be next to your toiletry wherever you are in Thassos.
You can kindly use those, and the locals will appreciate your gesture. Don’t forget that if the paper gets stuck to the thin pipes, you may witness a rather unpleasant situation in your toilet. You do not want that.
By adhering to this simple rule, you contribute to the smooth operation of the island’s sanitation systems and help maintain a hygienic environment for everyone.
Mistake #20: Booking the first hotel you see and not looking at reviews when booking accommodation.
That’s one of the most common Thassos travel mistakes.
With its array of Thassos accommodations, from family-run guesthouses to luxury resorts, Thassos offers a wide range of options for every traveler. However, booking the first hotel you see without considering reviews and recommendations is a mistake that can impact your overall experience.
Before making a reservation, take the time to research and read reviews from fellow travelers to gauge the quality, service, and overall satisfaction of the accommodations. I’d recommend looking into booking dot com. Doing so lets you make an informed choice that aligns with your preferences and ensures a comfortable and enjoyable stay on the island.
One of the ultimate Thassos travel tips is finding the right accommodation. To help you with choosing, here are some stays I recommend on the island:
One of the ultimate Thassos travel tips is finding the right accommodation. To help you with choosing, here are some stays I recommend on the island:
Apartments and Studios
Renting an apartment or studio is a great option for those who prefer a more independent stay. These are available in various sizes and locations around the island. Among all the options, I’d highly recommend Studios Plaka.
Thassos has numerous hotels, ranging from budget-friendly options to luxury resorts. Some of the most popular areas for hotels are Limenas (Thassos Town), Limenaria, and Golden Beach. My favorite one-of-a-kind hotel experience is A For Art Design Hotel. You need to book in advance because their rooms sell out so fast!
You can experience Greek hospitality and immerse yourself in the local culture by staying in a traditional guesthouse. These are often found in picturesque villages like Theologos. My favorite pick is Elaion Terra Boutique.
Thassos is also a popular destination for camping enthusiasts. Several campsites on the island allow you to enjoy nature and the great outdoors.
Agrotourism and Eco-friendly Accommodation
Thassos is known for its lush landscape, and you can find eco-friendly and agrotourism accommodation options that connect you with nature and the island’s sustainable practices. Check out Villas Thassos, where the owner plans to offer such services.
If you’re looking for a more unique and personalized experience, Thassos has boutique hotels that offer a more intimate atmosphere. My favorite high-end option is the Alexandra Golden Boutique Hotel in Skala Potamia.
For a hassle-free vacation, there are all-inclusive resorts on Thassos that offer meals, drinks, and various activities as part of the package. I’d recommend Blue Dream Palace for such holiday types.
Thassos has many options for beachfront stays, so you can wake up to the sound of the waves and have the beach at your doorstep. I would recommend Navis Luxury with eyes closed.
If you’re traveling on a tighter budget, you can find budget-friendly hostels and guesthouses in various parts of the island. Goutadika in Limenas is one such option.
Villas and Vacation Homes
Thassos offers many beautiful villas and vacation homes for those seeking a comfortable private retreat. These are ideal for families or larger groups. My favorite pick is Pine Beach House, right on the beachfront.
If you aren’t sure when to book your holidays, here are the best times to visit Thassos.
Then, the only thing you left for the ultimate holidays is to know how to get to Thassos!
Frequently Asked Questions for Thassos Travel Mistakes to Avoid
1. Should I rely solely on public transport in Thassos?
It’s better not to. While there’s some public transport, it may not reach all the hidden gems. Renting a car or scooter gives you the freedom to explore off-the-beaten-path sites at your own pace.
2. Is it a good idea to visit Thassos without a booking during peak season?
Avoid this mistake. Thassos gets quite busy in the summer. Secure your accommodation early to ensure you get a place that suits your preferences and budget.
3. Can I assume all beaches in Thassos have facilities?
Not all of them. Some of Thassos’ most beautiful beaches are unorganized and lack facilities. Always bring water, snacks, and an umbrella if you’re venturing to less popular beaches.
4. Should I skip the inland villages?
Definitely not. The mountain villages like Theologos and Panagia are full of charm and history. Skipping them means missing out on authentic Greek hospitality and traditional cuisine.
5. Is it safe to drink tap water in Thassos?
While generally safe, it’s advisable to drink bottled water, especially in more remote areas. This can help avoid any potential stomach upsets.
6. Can I explore the entire island quickly?
Rushing is a mistake. Thassos is rich in history, culture, and natural beauty. Take your time to truly appreciate what each location offers. A hurried visit won’t do justice to the island’s charm.
7. Is Thassos only for beach lovers?
No, it caters to a variety of interests. From ancient ruins and museums to hiking trails and traditional villages, there’s much more to Thassos than just its beautiful beaches.
8. Should I ignore local customs and traditions?
Respecting local customs and traditions enriches your travel experience. Engage with locals, try traditional foods, and participate in local events to fully immerse yourself in Thassian culture.
9. Is it unnecessary to learn a few Greek phrases?
Learning basic Greek phrases like “hello,” “thank you,” and “goodbye” can greatly enhance your interaction with locals. It shows respect and is often appreciated.
10. Can I wear beachwear everywhere?
Be mindful of your attire. While beachwear is acceptable on the beaches, it’s respectful to dress more conservatively when visiting towns, villages, and especially religious sites.
Conclusion on Thassos Travel Mistakes
After reading through these 20 rookie Thassos travel mistakes, you’re ready to travel to Thassos like a pro. By steering clear of these common pitfalls and embracing the island’s unique charm, you’ll create unforgettable memories and experience the best that Thassos has to offer.
So, pack your sense of adventure, an open mind, and a dash of wanderlust, and get ready to embark on an incredible journey to Thassos – the Greek island paradise that awaits your discovery.
To look even cooler in your posts, remember to spice up your Instagram or Facebook feed with one of these 106 Captions and Quotes about Thassos.
For even more insider info, check out this complete list of 101 Things to Do on the Island, read my Comprehensive Guide on all Thassos Villages, or get inspiration from these 21 ideas for Day Trips in Thassos!