Greece is full of secrets, and one of the best is the selection of pristine mountains covered with winter snows. Neglected by many skiers addicted to better-known resorts in Switzerland, France, and Italy, Greece offers low prices and a good variety of slopes and ski centers. Relatively few foreigners ski Greece, and even avid skiers in other nations may be unaware of the Greek alternative. I once mentioned Greece as a possible destination to a British skier who looked at me as if I had just suggested that the permafrost on Mars was just right for cross-country skiing this year.
But this may be changing. As ski resorts in the Balkans begin to draw more visitors, friendly Greece, already loved as a summertime getaway, is starting to attract more EU visitors and a scattering of Americans in search of inexpensive, unusual skiing. It may not stay a secret for long.
Skiing in Greece is a bargain compared to most other places, with lift passes costing only a few dollars a day. Recent prices at Mt. Parnassos, the best-developed resort run by the EOT, include a 7-day pass for about $90. Other prices are similarly reasonable.
The archaeological site of Delphi is near the Mt. Parnassus ski area, and enjoys a second season providing apres ski in a village that takes on even more of a storybook quality when dusted with snow. Nearby Arachova also offers lodgings, shops, and a healthy hand-made sweater industry.
Just three hours away from Athens, Mt. Parnassus is easily accessible and generally offers skiing from December to March. A dozen lifts and a big spectrum of slopes make this the skiing hotspot in Greece.
Here are some links to the information you need to start planning a Hellenic skiing holiday.
Ski Centers of Greece
Greek Snow Report
Constantly updated, detailed summary of snow conditions throughout Greece, including snowcam photos, written descriptions, and notes on unusual conditions. Check this first; be sure you wait for the bottom portion of the page to load. Excellent.
Macedonia Region Ski Slopes
A look at the numerous resorts in Macedonia.
Ski-friendly hotel near the slopes of Karpenissi.
True Greece Winter Vacations with Skiing
Explore wintertime Greece with optional skiing on the slopes of Mt. Parnassus. One of the few true "winter" tours of Greece, maximizing the season's special pleasures.
From United Hellas, a list of on-line hotels near popular skiing areas.
This page from Klaoudatos sports stores offers a link to the Athens-Parnassos and Athens-Karpenissi ski buses. The schedule is in Greek only; your hotel concierge can help so take the numbers with you to Greece.
Plan Your Own Trip to GreeceFlights To and Around Greece: Athens and Other Greece Flights at Travelocity - The airport code for Athens International Airport is ATH.
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