The village of Portaria, Pelion Greece
Portaria is a beautiful mountainous traditional village at an altitude of 650m and is 13km from Volos. It was built around the monastery of "Panagias tis Portareas", which was itself built in the 13th century. The name of the village "Portaria" takes its name from this monastery. The village is filled with green scenery, spring waters, cobble-stoned paths and old mansions.
Next to the village square you can see the ruins of the hotel "Theoxenia", which was considered the most luxurious of hotels in all of the Balkans. However, it was destroyed during the German occupation of Greece. The remains today stand as a testimant to the importance and stature of Portaria all those years ago.
Along side the road that leads to Hania is the chapel of Panagias tis Portareas, which houses many painted icons, and is right next to the church of Agios Nicolaos. On the road that leads to Makrinitsa is the Byzantine monastery of Agios Ioannis Prothromos, which is full of Byzantine icons and decorations.
You can take an interesting walk to the spring fountain "Mana" (Mother) with impressive waterfalls at the place of Karavos.
From here, if you follow the path you will pass through scenery of luscious nature and spring waters, to a stunning part of Portaria known as Athamena. During the summer in Portaria many festivals take place. In May is the "International Dance Day", and in July is the "International Dance Festival for Children".
August sees the "International Dance Festival". During the last week in August the festival reaches its conclusion with the revival of a traditional Pelion wedding. In autumn is the "Ascent of Portaria", which is organised by the car club of Volos. For more information on this call (24210) 55339.
Portaria is a place for quiet and peaceful summer or winter vacations. It is extremely beautiful and full of nature and traditional houses and mansions. It is also just 12km from the ski center "Agriolefkes", which is always popular in the winter.