Thasos Island is the northernmost inhabited Greek island. Located in the northern Aegean Sea, about 7 kilometers from the coast of mainland Greece. It is situated on the 40th parallel northern geographic latitude. In the widest part, from north to south, the island stretches nearly 26 kilometers. The area of Thasos is about 390 sq.km. and belongs to medium-sized Greek islands. It is connected to the mainland by regular ferry link Thasos – Kavala and Thasos – Keramoti.
Relief. The landscape of the island of Thasos is mountainous. The highest peak is Ipsarion, which is about 1200 meters high. It is located in the northern part of the island and reveals magnificent views of the Aegean Sea. Overall, the eastern and northern part of the island have greater altitude. The coastline is relatively slightly indented. Overall, Thasos has nearly round shape. This relief has predestined the location of the settlements mainly in the coastal zone of the island, because there is more appropriate places to build them and also about their future development.
Climate. The climate on the island of Thasos, is subtropical Mediterranean. The summers are long dry and hot and winters are short, mild and humid. The hottest months are July and August. In August, the temperature reaches a maximum. Then the daily average temperature is around 28°C at the shade. The winter months are relatively uniform. From the early December until the end of March, the temperatures are constant. The coldest is still January. Then the temperatures ranging from 10 to 15°C. December and March are one – two degrees warmer.
From April to November is about or over 20°C. The most rainy months are December and January. Then the rainfall is between 90 and 100 millimeters per month. The driest month is August, when usually there is not any precipitations. If you still plan to visit the island because of the beach and summer entertainments, avoid April and November, since then the weather is changeable and unstable. Although most days are warm, there are also days which are pretty cool.
Nature. Thasos is a very green Mediterranean island. The interior is covered with dense, mostly coniferous forests. Of the typical Mediterranean species are widely spread especially the olives and almonds. The nature of the island is well preserved as a whole, despite the rapid development of tourism. Many small rivers, which flow through the interior of Thasos make it a perfect place to stroll and find a coolness during the summer, Greek heat. Inside the island, the vegetation is even more exuberant than in the coastal zone.
Because of the high altitude here, in the winter can fall heavy snow that waters the soil at depth. Thasos is famous for its magnificent beaches. The sand is very white. The sea water is very clean and limpid. Because of its beauty, however, the local beaches attract throngs of tourists each year and will be quite difficult to find a place to hole up alone.
Economy. Thasos economy relies mainly on the tourism. Every year the island is visited by hundreds of thousands of tourists, mostly from Eastern and Southeastern Europe, such as Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine and Russia. The island is dominated by small family hotels, and similar to the most places in Greece, the local population has a very old tradition of the welcoming of foreign visitors. In addition to well-developed tourism industry, Thasos also relies on the agriculture. The island exports almonds, olives and citrus fruits that grow very well here thanks to the warm climate and heavy winter rains. In the interior of the island there are numerous of vineyards. The Mediterranean climate is ideal for growing of grapes. For this reason, Thasos is a major exporter of wine.
Population and settlements. The population of the island of Thasos is just over 20 000 people. In the recent years it has become almost doubled. The main causes are the multiple jobs that are created in the tourism and less in the sector of the agriculture. Many immigrants from countries like Bulgaria and Romania, arrived here to find well-paid job in local restaurants and hotels. The biggest and most populous city on the island of Thasos Limenas is its capital. It is home to over 2 000 people. The rest of the population lives in smaller towns and villages, mainly in the coastal areas.
History. Thasos always been famous as a rich and wealthy island. As early as 7th century BC it was already a global player. The island’s shipping has been well developed and this fact was very important about the export of goods abroad. Thus, water transport has developed very strong the economy of the island and gave it international significance. A typical example of costly export commodity in those times was the world famous white marble, which was highly valued abroad.
Because of its natural beauty and resources Thasos has always been a subject of interest and willingness of other countries. The worst year in the history of the island is 1479th, when it has fallen under Ottoman rule. One of the reasons is the great proximity of Turkey, which today is distanced at only 108 kilometers. Thasos has remained under Ottoman rule until 1912, when it has released and returned into the borders of Greece. Today the island of Thasos is booming again as one of the most beloved tourist destinations.