Volos (326 km.
from Athens, 215 km. from Thessaloniki) is the
capital and economic centre of the prefecture.
Thanks to its privileged position at the foot of Mt.
Pelion on the Pagasitic gulf, it is a good base for
enjoying the sea, wooded slopes, and green valleys
that surround it. As for the derivation of the word
"Volos", which according to a Byzantine historian of
the 14th century was called "Golos", there are
several theories; the most widely accepted is that
it represents a corruption of the Mycenaean Iolkos.
Founded in the mid 19th century, modern Volos, with
71,000 inhabitants, is a cheerful , lively town,
soundly laid out with pleasant broad streets. The
waterfront is an ideal spot for a stroll. A modern
coastal avenue bustling with life, it is lined with
pastry shops, cafes and restaurants. From the suburb
of Ano Volos, built upon the slopes of Pelion, the
Pagasitic gulf and the town below take on another
dimension. Volos harbour is particularly active. It
is the main export centre of Thessaly and the scene
of much commercial and passenger traffic bound for
the Sporades, the great ports of the Mediterranean,
Syria, and other Middle Eastern cities.
Archaelogical Museum (tel.: (0421)28.563): contains
a rich store of finds from the Bronze Age, pottery
of the 8th and 5th century BC, and 6th and 5th
century sculpture. For example, its collection of
Hellenistic grave stelai from Dimitrias is unique;
their well preserved paintings are considered among
the most important examples of ancient Greek art.
Municipal Gallery (tel.:(0421) 25.760): Housed in
the Town Hall, it comprises a fine collection of
paintings, sculpture, and engravings by modern Greek
artists. Home of the folk historian Kitsos Makris
(tel.:(0421) 23.778) with works by Theophilos,
Christopoulos, Byzantine icons, wood carvings and
pottery. Pelion's old fashioned train: This little
train which used to connect Volos with Milies has
been put back into service over a short portion of
the old urban line. It would be running on special
occasions. The churches of Agios Konstantinos, Agios
Nikolaos, Metamorphosis and the chapel of Agia
Triada. At Anakasia, the Theophilos Museum with
frescoes by the great folk artist. At Alli Meria,
the Velentza bakery with wall paintings by
The lush area around Volos is scattered with
interesting archaeological sites which history buffs
will find very rewarding, while the summer resorts
bordering beautiful beaches abound in picturesque
tavernas offering local delicacies. The azure sea is
ideal for bathing.
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