Just a small fishing village in Chalkidiki Grece, Porto Koufo has nonetheless a great sailing potential since it lies right next to the largest natural harbor in the country, one that has been used for maritime purposes since ancient times going back to Turkish pirates but also the ancient trade ships.
The locals call it “Kofos Limin” which literally translates to “Deaf Harbor”, referring probably to the unique feature of the harbor thanks to which sea sounds cannot be heard when inside it. sailors can find it in the southwest of the Sithonia peninsula, located in the northern part f the country, on the mainland.
Travel & Arrival
The closest largest city is Polygyros, also the capital of the region of Chalkidiki, located at about 80km to the north, inside the center of the peninsula.
The closest international airport is the one in Thessaloniki, which also happens to be the second largest city in the country. The distance by road is roughly 145km, which makes for a 2 and a half hours trip.
By land, the way only main road leading in is the one which connects the city with Thessaloniki which is a significant distance away. The only upside is that much of the road is situated along the coast which will afford you some nice view of the Mediterranean. Otherwise, if coming from any of the large cities in the north, expect travel times of over 2 hours.
Avant & Apres Sail
The history of this, the deepest natural bay in Greece, is long and filled with interesting stories such as the ones of the Turkish pirates that used this place to hide their ships or the ones from the Second World War when German U-boats used it as a base of operations. It was during that time that most of the German-made fortifications were built, many of which are still visible to holidaymakers to this day.
In case you’re interested, the dimensions of the bay are: 1600m maximum length, 550m maximum width, 8.23m maximum depth and an opening of 300m. The depth at the entrance is around 10m so it’s pretty safe even for large boats to sail inside. Among the local landmarks is the rocky cliff which constitutes the coastline. At one point in the southeastern part of the bay, the cliff gives way to a cave where you can even enter with your boat. A definite must-see for any sailor.
Porto Koufo itself has only about 100 permanent residents and consists of just the few houses scattered along the shore as well as some tourist facilities that include hotels, bars and restaurants. Another thing worth visiting is the neighboring cave found southeast of the harbor, where an old quarry was turned into a worship place by the Romans. After that, the Christians came and drew a large red cross on the cave’s roof which can still be seen to this day, probably in an attempt to purify it.
Actions & Events
The main activity in the resort has definitely got to be sun bathing, which can be done on the small and sandy beach in the village itself, or on the larger one but equally calm found at Tristinika, just minutes away from Porto Koufo. To get to it, simply follow the road to Neos Marmaras and follow the sign which will guide to your left along a curvy road until you see the beach.
Though a small settlement, the village of Porto Koufo has its own festival with a significant importance both for locals as for sailors in general. The festival is held in September of every year and it’s called “Fishing of the Tuna”. You can image what happens at that festival judging by its name.