Macedonia Travel Guide for 2024

Written by James
 Last updated: February 11, 2024

Welcome to Central Macedonia, a treasure trove of cultural, historical, and natural wonders in the heart of Greece.

With its magnificent landscapes, vibrant cities, and rich heritage, this region offers a perfect blend of ancient and modern experiences.

From the bustling metropolis of Thessaloniki to the serene shores of Halkidiki, Central Macedonia invites you to explore its secrets and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Why visit Central Macedonia?

Immerse yourself in history: Discover ancient sites like Pella, the birthplace of Alexander the Great, where you can marvel at the intricate mosaics and excavated ruins.

Experience diverse landscapes: From pristine beaches to lush forests and stunning mountain ranges, Central Macedonia offers an array of breathtaking natural wonders.

Savour delicious cuisine: Indulge in mouth-watering local flavours and fresh Mediterranean ingredients, such as succulent seafood, flavourful meze, and sweet pastries.

Embrace local culture: Attend traditional festivals, witness ancient customs, and mingle with warm, hospitable locals, experiencing the region’s authentic atmosphere.

Easily accessible: Central Macedonia is a breeze to reach with Thessaloniki’s international airport, making it an ideal destination for travellers worldwide.

Reasons to Love Central Macedonia

Rich history: Explore archaeological treasures and UNESCO World Heritage Sites, like Thessaloniki’s early Christian and Byzantine monuments.

Varied experiences: Beaches, mountains, cities, and countryside are all within reach, offering a unique mix of activities to suit any traveller’s interests.

Diverse gastronomy: Enjoy local produce, tantalising street food, and exceptional dining experiences, from quaint seaside tavernas to upscale urban eateries.

Vibrant nightlife: Dance the night away in Thessaloniki’s bustling bars and clubs, or enjoy a laid-back evening at a traditional Greek music venue.

Warm hospitality: Experience the genuine warmth and generosity of the Macedonian people, known for their friendly nature and welcoming attitude.

Where to go

Thessaloniki: A lively city with a vibrant arts scene, Byzantine history, and modern amenities, perfect for exploring museums, galleries, and historic sites.

Halkidiki: Stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and charming villages await, offering idyllic relaxation and water-based activities like sailing and snorkelling.

Mount Olympus: The legendary home of the Greek gods, offering breathtaking views and excellent hiking opportunities for adventurers of all levels, just a couple of hours away by car from Thessaloniki.

Edessa: Visit the “City of Waters” with impressive waterfalls, lush greenery, and a charming old town filled with traditional architecture, just an hour and a half by car from Thessaloniki.

Kavala: A picturesque coastal town steeped in history and beauty, boasting an impressive fortress, aqueduct, and ancient theatre, just an hour and a half by car from Thessaloniki.

What to do

Explore ancient sites: Discover historical gems like Vergina, Dion, and Philippi, where you can delve into the region’s rich past and admire the impressive ruins.

Beach-hopping: Soak up the sun on Halkidiki’s pristine shores, or take a boat trip to hidden coves and secluded beaches for an unforgettable experience.

Hiking and outdoor activities: Trek through picturesque trails and enjoy the region’s natural beauty, such as the enchanting forests of Mount Olympus or the serene landscapes around Edessa.

Culinary experiences: Sample local delicacies, attend cooking classes, or visit wineries and distilleries to learn about the region’s traditional food and drink production.

Cultural events: Join the fun at traditional festivals, such as the Thessaloniki International Film Festival and the Philippi Festival of Kavala, which celebrate art, culture, and local traditions.

Local foods to try

Bougatsa: A delicious pastry filled with custard or cheese, perfect for breakfast or a sweet treat, often enjoyed with a dusting of icing sugar and a cup of coffee.

Kavourmas: A slow-cooked, preserved pork dish with fragrant spices, often served with bread or as a meze platter.

Soutzouk Loukoum: A sweet treat made from sugar, glucose, cornstarch, and walnuts, flavoured with various essences and coated in powdered sugar.

Gyros: A popular Greek street food of seasoned meat, vegetables, and tzatziki wrapped in pita bread, perfect for a quick, satisfying meal.

Halkidiki olives: Distinctive large green olives, essential in Greek cuisine, used in various dishes or enjoyed on their own as a snack.

Souvenirs to buy

Olive oil: Take home a high-quality, locally-produced bottle of olive oil, renowned for its flavour and health benefits.

Worry beads: Known as “komboloi”, these beads are both decorative and soothing, offering a piece of Greek tradition to keep with you.

Byzantine jewellery: Unique, handcrafted pieces inspired by Byzantine art and history, perfect as a special memento or gift.

Local wines: Sample and purchase the excellent wines in the region, showcasing the area’s rich winemaking traditions.

Traditional textiles: Colourful tablecloths, pillowcases, and more, featuring intricate embroidery inspired by local patterns and designs.

Flights to Macedonia

Agia Marina