Tolo used to be a small charming traditional village. From 1960`s it has gradually changed to its current form of a touristic resort with literally hundreds of hotels and touristic boulevard with shops, bars restaurants and clubs. Main attraction is an extraordinary beach with the finest golden sand giving the beach its name, Fine sand ("Psili ammos" in Greek). Now imagine all these fitted on the side of hill. Exactly these are the reasons why Tolo is a magnet for some who bless it, while for others it is a condemned touristic night mare. To be honest, visiting Tolo in July is utterly different experience when compared to extra-seasonal time like October or May.
Tolo is mostly known for its fine golden sand beach. It is extremely popular among families with children, because the sea bottom descend slowly, thus creating a shallow waters. Even small children can walk quite far without getting submerged.
The water in Tolo is clean, however not clear. Although not so windy, sea currents tend to whirl the sand and so the water may look hazy. However, don`t let it fool You. It is only the sand. On the other hand, in summer You will share the beach with thousand other people which affects the water.
In the summer main part of the beach is reserved for rental umbrellas and loungers. It gets full pretty fast, because Tolo hosts big number of visitors in its hotels. Make sure You arrive early to pay for the umbrella. There are sport facilities offering rental as well. However, because of the huge number of visitors, windsurfing options for example are very limited and kiting impossible. If You are serious about it windsurfing is better in Kandia and Iria, while kiting is excellent in Radical centre at Nea Kios. Early part of the beach is reserved for free public visitors. There are only few small trees, so be careful. Sun strokes are often. Luckily there is a bar, where You can buy refreshments and snacks. Beside this, even the public beach is organised, regularly cleaned, equipped with showers and trash bins.
Coming here out of the summer season will leave in You a very different flavour. Tolo has officially less than 2.000 inhabitants, but in winter there are only few permanent inhabitants. Touristic shops are closed and only couple of businesses for residents are open. The beach is deserted and You will be able to admire it in its full beauty. You can enjoy the Tolo like this from October until April-May. This is exactly the time when I can recommend visiting Tolo.
Part of the beach closer to the port is under a row of hotels, bars and tavernas. Although every beach in Greece is public, the enterprises located here place their umbrellas, sun beds and tables on the beach. Sometimes they even try to chase away tourists intending to lay there without at least ordering some refreshments.
At the end of Tolo, there is a port. Apart from being a nice place for photography, cruises to Hydra and Spetses depart from here daily.
Between Tolo beach and Assini`s Plaka beach, there is one small gravel beach called Red rocks ("Kokkinos vrahos" in Greek). It is accessible only by your own transport. The beach is tiny with only few umbrellas. During the week there are only few people, but on weekends the situation is completely opposite. On the nearby cliff, there is a romantic bar. The right moment to visit is at night. Your time here with the loved one will be complemented with a picturesque view on the lagoon lighted in red and silent music in background.
If You will be at Kokkinos vrahos, you have the opportunity to visit acropolis of Assini. You can see part of it on the right part of this picture of red rocks. The entrance is 100 meters from both, Kokkinos vrahos and Plaka beach Assini. Photographs taken from here are beautiful, because it offers perfect view on both sides, Kokkinos vrahos & Tolo and Plaka Assini & Drepano. This ancient kingdom has been described as early as in Homer`s Iliad & Odyssey and has been an active participant of Trojan war. Admission is for free, so do not miss it.
For more pictures of Tolo beach check out our gallery
Notice at the end, please do not throw cigarettes, plastic cups and other waste into the sea nor on the beach. Tolo beach is organised and there are trash bins around. If You do not find one, take the waste with you. We are proud of our nature and Vila Vivari participates in the program of a sustainable tourism.
Protect the beauty around you, so that Your children may one day see it as well.
written by Michal Kohlmann