This site uses cookies to store information on your computer. Some of these cookies are essential to make this site work and others help us to gain insight into how it is being used.
These cookies are set when you submit a form, login or interact with the site by doing something that goes beyond clicking some simple links. We also use some non-essential cookies to anonymously track visitors or enhance your experience of this site. If you're not happy with this, we won't set these cookies but some nice features on the site may be unavailable. To control third party cookies, you can also adjust your browser settings. If you wish to view any policies or terms of usage that you cannot find on this website, please contact us. You can change your mind and opt-out at any time by clicking the ✻ icon above.
I consent to cookies
I don't consent to cookies


'To read Skyros press coverage is to choke on cliched words like 'life changing', 'transforming'. Yet at the end of two weeks, Skyros has been all of these.' Kate Rew, The Observer

Skyros has been the subject of numerous features in the British and foreign press over the years. The very short extracts on this page represent only a tiny sample of the vast publicity given to an organisation, which does not even have a PR department.

i News - August 2019
15 Alternative Greek Islands

The Silver Travel Advisor - August 2019
The joy of living with people just like you

The Times - June 2019
50 best last-minute summer holiday deals for 2019

The Telegraph - June 2019
The 21 Best Greek Islands - Best For Alternatives: Skyros
Skyros, the most remote and undeveloped of the Sporades Islands, is a hotspot for holistic holidays. Telegraph Travel's Sophie Butler recommends Atsitsa Bay...

The Telegraph - May 2019
10 holidays to soothe your soul - Get creative in Greece.

Woman & Home - February 2019
Escape to an island with the Skyros retreats on the Isle of Wight...

The Times - January 2019 
Now in its 41st year, the holiday company Skyros is going strong with activity breaks on the Isle of Wight and its original home, the Greek island of Skyros, where it runs two alternative holiday centres. Get active with a range of courses that include yoga, writing, singing, abseiling and windsurfing. Breaks can be at the Skyros Centre in the cobblestoned Old Town or by the sea in Atsitsa Bay, or guests can blend the two.

I News - December 2018
15 best last-minute New Year's holidays to book now.
By day you’ll have singing, improv and life-coaching lessons; by night, there’s karaoke and a New Year’s Eve disco.

Greece Is - December 2018
Founder Yannis was inspired by the ancient Greeks and their holistic beliefs.

Claremont Courier - November 2018
I have spent many lovely weeks over nine years enjoying visiting the two centers for personal development—one in the village and one in the countryside on the sea.

Campfire Convention - September 2018
...loving the ethos every time as each group creates its own identity: a precious community in which every individual is cared for and valued.

The Telegraph - August 2018
September is a great month to travel - here's where to go
Our favourites include Skyros, in the pine-fringed Sporades...

Queen of Retreats - August 2018
Atsitsa Bay is the sort of holiday you come home feeling it's never too late to start anything new.

Jewish Chronicle
The best solo travel holidays
...write your own novel, on a creative writing break in Greece with Skyros

Psychologies Magazine - June 2018
Editor, Suzy interviews writing facilitator, Monqiue Roffey.

Psychologies Magazine - June 2018
Editor, Suzy interviews co-founder, Dina Glouberman.

The Times - June 2018
The best spas and bootcamps in Europe.

i News - March 2018
A stone villa pitched between pine forests and sparkling sea on the tranquil island of Skyros provides the setting for a number of creative retreats.

Greece Is - Fenruary 2018
No Partner, No Problem: Amazing Holidays for Singles in Greece

Greece Is - January 2018
At the Skyros Centre, maybe the oldest alternative vacation health center in Europe, you can design a retreat that suits you.

Sunday Times Travel - January 2018
I came away inspired, fired up about my premise, and armed with Diane's tricks to get the creative juices flowing. Lucy Thackray

The Telegraph - 7 January 2018
19 Best Greek Islands - Skyros: Best for Alternatives

The Guardian - December 2017
10 of the best holiday gift voucher ideas: Know someone who’s itching to do something new? Skyros specialises in learning holidays and covers a wide range of skills, from art to singing, writing to windsurfing.

Arthritis Digest - Issue 2 2017
Six inspirational retreats for aspiring writers. The Grange is in the old village of Shanklin on the south coast of the Isle of Wight. The gorgeous secluded Georgian country house is nestled in greenery and offers a fantastic programme of writing courses with the help of award-winning authors. Charlotte Bush

The Telegraph - 3 May 2017
Skyros is a hotspot for holistic holidays. Telegraph Travel's Spohie Butler recommends Atsitsa Bay, which offers yoga, sailing, life-coaching, music, sketching, painting, dancing and various drop-in activities.

The Telegraph - 3 January 2017
Mix music, singing, dance, yoga, art, writing, windsurfing and more. Skyros offers solo travellers of any age the chance to do something a little bit different in the sunshine before retiring to an eco bamboo hut and falling asleep to the sound of the waves. Caroline Sylger Jones

The Telegraph - 5 September 2016
Jimmy Carr was inspired to give up his job with Shell and become a comedian after a holiday with Skyros, and the company’s weekend breaks at their British HQ on the Isle of Wight are likely to inspire others too. Held at The Grange, a Georgian b&b with lovely sea views and a large garden, the year-round choice of two-night writing courses, yoga, photography, dance and wellbeing escapes are great for solo travellers or friends looking for a weekend break with a difference.

The Telegraph - September 2016
The best body and soul holidays in Britain: Best Holistic Retreat (The Grange).

DK Travel - September 2016
Best art escapes in Europe.

Asahi Weekly, Japan – 18 September 2016
Skyros [island] is a special holiday destination. There are no nightclubs, no topless bathing and virtually no crime. The population of 3,000 prides itself on the safety of the island. Before plunging into the sea, I leave my bag on the beach with my iPhone and some money inside it. Nearby, young people are playing volleyball and children are splashing about on the shore. I emerge from my swim to find the bag untouched. I marvel at this. The same thing happens every day. ‘Skyros has a close community’, says Dimitri, a young man in his thirties. ‘People are very protective of their way of life. Friendship and trust are important aspects of life here’.

Spirit and Destiny - August 2016
'I found true love' after years of putting up emotional barriers, Sally Brockway learnt how to open her heart to love on the Greek island of Skyros.

Independent Ireland - July 2016 
‘Solo in Skyros - How to start your novel on a sun holiday': It's a great holiday for what I call 'singular togetherness': solo travellers who want to share their experiences with other, independently-minded people. There's a big emphasis on community, which makes it easy for even the shyest to meet others. Deirdre Mullins.

The Telegraph - July 2016
A life-changing visit to inspirational Skyros.

The Telegraph - 1 July 2016
A life-changing visit to inspirational Skyros: De-stress? Inner calm? Skyros can do it in spades. I was at a crucial crossroads with my marriage in shreds and a decision to make as to whether I scooped up my young son and dogs and went back to my home in South Africa. I signed up for a week's writing course on Skyros, needing sun, sea and inspiration. During this week we soaked up the views of the wine-dark sea from the vine-covered terraces (and the produce from the vines), over-indulged in seafood ad salads and laughed as only one can if one is relaxed and happy. The magic of Skyros worked. That was 18 years ago and we have been happily married for the past 17. Jackie Pilkington

The Times - 23 April 2016
Wi-fi free places. Skyros Greece. Overlooking Atsitsa Bay on the eponymous Greek island, Skyros is one of the original detox destinations. There's little to no phone signal no wi-fi and no TV - and accomodation is in rustic bamboo huts in a pine forest. Stays include three courses a day, including yoga, art, writing, music, dance, abseiling, windsurfing and comedy. James Ellis

The Globe and Mail - March 2016
The solitude to write and create, combined with the variety of activities available once the three-hours-a-day courses are finished, plus the strong sense of community fostered here keeps participants coming back year after year.

HISKIND - March 2016
For the most energetic holiday to burn off the many creme eggs (also, us again), a Skyros retreat starts the day with early morning yoga, mid-morning dance or trapeze course, before heading off for an afternoon of windsurfing lesson. Dean Eastmond

Metropolitan Life - March 2016
It's an ideal place to try something new.

The Times - 6 February 2016
Greece’s ‘Best Special Interest’ holiday: Atsitsa Bay, by the sea, backed by a lush pine forest. Stay in relaxed huts around a stone villa for courses – from yoga and novel writing to screenwriting and salsa – held on stone terraces among fruit and olive trees.

AOL Travel - February 2016
Quirky Valentines Breaks - Brush up your flirting skills at a Valentine's Flirtshop organised by Skyros.

Aquarius - January 2016
Not only do I feel stronger, but I have also made friends for life. The group is fantastic, and I’ve shared many lovely times with them. While I’m still not 100 per cent certain about what I want, I’m no longer overwhelmed by the future. Writing for seven days was a transformative experience; it gave me a much-needed focus, as well as a platform on which to share my life experiences. Andry Anastasiou

The Independent - January 2016
'Class Act' - Holidays that hone new skills are a big draw for single travellers. More than 70 per cent of guests with Skyros Holidays journey alone to the eponymous Greek island for workshops in yoga, painting, creative writing, windsurfing, comedy and more. James Litston

The Jewish Chronicle - January 2016
I found myself reflecting on a most unusual week that gave rise to some new emotions and insights. This was play time for adults and perhaps a prelude to new beginnings. Sharron Livingstone

The Irish Examiner - January 2016
An oasis of peace on the Greek island of Skyros proved the perfect environment for Claire Droney to practice her writing skills tutored by a Man Booker author. Claire Droney

Scribble, Snap, Travel - October 2015
‘Hand on my heart, those were two of the most magical weeks of my life. I came away from the retreat with a renewed zest for life, feeling empowered and also having my faith in people – good, honest, emotionally healthy people – restored. I made friends from all over the world whom I’m still in contact with.’ Andrea Anastasiou

The Travel Magazine - September 2015
There were several classes [in Atsitsa] with incredible teachers on offer – all specialists in their field. David Bourn’s classes were often hilarious and I couldn’t remember a time when I laughed so much. The cabaret-cum-variety show was tremendous fun and nearly everyone contributed something. There were beautiful harmonies by the singing group (curated by singer/songwriter Abbie Lathe), comedy sketches, pieces of writing inspired by attendees of the writing class given by novelist Amanda Smyth of Black Rock fame (the book she penned), poetry and of course, trapeze. It was truly uplifting to see how much could be achieved in just a few days. Sharron Livingston

A Lady of Leisure - July 2015
Skyros is unlike any other holiday and it is perfect if you want to reassess your life, find out where you’re going, find your life goals, deal with problems or take stock. However it works equally well if all you want to do is lie on a beach with a book. Sarah Bridge

Red Magazine - July 2015
Whatever the cause of your turmoil, stop trying to squash it with work and use your holiday to unpack it. I recommend the Skyros Life Choices programme. Philippa Perry, Red Magazine's agony aunt.

Your Hols - June 2015
Tony Hawks is about to teach comedy classes on Greece’s Skyros island. The author will be a guest lecturer in Skyros Holidays’ new programme for this summer with two week-long Humorous Writing courses in September.

Huffington Post - June 2015
Skyros personal development breaks could quite literally change your life. Cathy Winston

The Good Web Guide - 8 May 2015
Number One of the Best Sites for Unique Holidays. Really creative dynamic holidays are on offer at Skyros. Over the years Skyros have built up a reputation as the number one provider of alternative holidays and for good reason.

Daily Express - May 2015 Broaden your horizons: Pick up a skill on holiday
James Litson includes Skyros Holidays as a holiday destination to pick up a skill. James says, 'The Skyros Centre, on sleepy skyros (one of the Sporades islands) hosts a Writers' Lab each summer to encourage hidden talents. The one or two-week programmes includes morning classes (held outsides, with inspiring countryside and sea views) and free afternoons for relaxing or scribbling your thoughts'.

Telegraph Travel - February 2015 11th in The 19 Best Greek Islands
Skyros, the most remote and undeveloped of the Sporades Islands, is a hotspot for holistic holidays. Telegraph Travel's Sophie Butler recommends Atsitsa Bay, which offers yoga, sailing, life-coaching, music, sketching, painting, singing, dancing and various drop-in activities.

The Mirror - December 2014 4th in the Top 10 Learning Holidays
If the course of true love hasn't run smoothly for you, sign up for a crash course in dating on the Isle of Wight. Life coach Alison Goldie will cover subjects such as how you sabotage yourself and how to make the best of your assets on a fun and informative course. It is held at The Grange by the Sea, a four-star country house listed in the AA's Best British B&B guide.

Prima Magazine - July 2014
Head to the beautiful Greek island of Skyros for a holiday that combines soulful activities with the chance to meet interesting people from all walks of life. Solo travellers come to unearth talents they didn't know they had, as well as resetting their priorities through yoga, art, music, windsurfing, comedy-improvisation and life-coaching courses.

Spirit & Destiny Magazine - March 2013
Stick in a rut? Then hop on a plane to the Greek island of Skyros and Choose Life At Any Risk. That's the name of a course designed to help people who are stuck in some area of their life, whether it's their relationship, spirituality, job or self-limiting beliefs. Helen Saunders.

The Irish Examiner - March 2013
When it comes to unusual activities, holistic holiday giants Skyros offers a veritable bounty, from jewellery design and windsurfing to massage and songwriting. Tanya Sweeney

The Good Web Guide - March 2013
Skyros are top of the list when it comes to booking an alternative break with some seriously life affirming elements. Goethe said; ‘Whatever you dream, or dream you can, begin it now. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.' And this might as well have been the Skyros tag line, because at this company it's all about finally realising that long held dream; whether you're a writer with a book just bursting to get out, an artist, or a yoga fanatic, there will be the perfect holiday - to make you feel like you've really ticked one of your life ambitions off your list.

Psychologies Magazine - March 2013
Spending a week upping your emotional intelligence on the Greek island of Skyros, could launch a life-long journey into greater self-discovery.

The Guardian Online - 7 January 2013
Tone up and broaden your mind while you tan on a 10-day Thailand trip from holistic holiday specialist Skyros.

The Telegraph - 26 July 2012
The best arts and crafts holidays. For creative courses abroad, consider one of the centres offered by Skyros. Perhaps most suitable is the Atsitsa Bay centre on the Greek island of Skyros, where over a 10-day stay you can try yoga, sailing, life-coaching, music, sketching, painting, singing, dancing and various drop-in activities. Sophie Butler

Financial Review, Australia - 18 May 2012
The salsa course (in Cuba) is more than just a dancefest. As well as regular two-hour dance classes, students are educated about Cuban history and culture and enjoy a range of excursions, from vists to museums and cigar facrtories to evenings in jazz and – of course – salsa clubs. Ute Junker

Aquarius magazine, UAE - 1 March 2012
The Rise of the Hobby Holiday. The ‘fly and flop’ holiday is so passé…These days smart women are taking edu-vacations, where learning – not lounging – is the name of the game. (The editor of the magazine gives Skyros as the epitome of this approach with particular emphasis on) the well-renowned Writers’ Lab on Skyros island. Kate Birch

The Irish Times - 25 February 2012
Our lives are ‘always on’, but sometimes you want to just stop, get off the superhighway and breathe, times you need to say ‘stop, I’m getting off’ and find some ‘me time’. Skyros, a retreat to stop and think, meditate or just let your mind wander, is one of the first alternative holidays to promote the ethos of personal growth, creativity and self-discovery. Joan Scales
The Age, Melbourne - 25 February 2012

I feel sure a spot of inner exploration amid this magical setting (in Cambodia) is on its way courtesy of the alternative holiday company Skyros, for whom ‘life -changing’ and ‘transforming’ are common testimonials from its clients. But, as it transpires in this instance, the most important thing is the outward journey around a country of fascinating contrasts amid the remnants of one of the greatest empires ever seen. Kate Edgley

The Guardian - 27 January 2012
A spot of inner exploration amid this magical setting (Cambodia) was, I felt sure, on its way, from alternative holiday champions Skyros for whom ‘life changing” and “transforming’ are common testimonials. (But), as it transpired, the most important thing was the outward journey, around a country of fascinating contrasts amid the remnants of one of the greatest empires the world has ever known. Kate Edgley

The Times - 7 January 2012
20 great breaks for Body & Soul.These alternative holidays inspired Jimmy Carr to give up his job with Shell and get into comedy. Those looking for lasting change should book a Life Choices Programme at The Skyros Centre. Courses are taught by tutors incl Dina Glouberman, Skyros co-founder, psychotherapist Kate Daniels, who runs ‘Walk Tall and Feel Fabulous’, and Ari Badaines, whose course focuses on relationships. Caroline Sylger

The Times - 31 December 2011
[The Skyros writing course] matched the standard of any college course I’ve known. But what impressed me most was something more subtle, profound, and long-lasting – the ethos of valuing both community and individuality, a way of being together that was inclusive, supportive and creative. I realised that my life was still wide open, crammed with as many opportunities as I wanted to envisage. That’s why I say, without a trace of irony and with huge gratitude, that my holiday on Skyros changed my life. Crysse Morrison

The Guardian Online - 14 October 2011
Where better to learn to salsa than the home of the dance? Classes are led by Damarys Suarez who's not just a brilliant teacher she's also an expert, with a masters degree in Afro-Cuban dance from Havana University. Got two left feet? The same trip also offers a creative writing option, led by playwright, director and actor Steven Berkoff. Isabel Choat

The Glasgow Evening Times - 3 September 2011
I was a little sceptical about spending 10 days with strangers in Atsitsa Bay, but I was lured in. Downsides are hard to find.. It was challenging and transformational but, more than that, it is an experience I will never forget. Nicole Waring

The Guardian - 7 May 2011
Learn to write with Steven Berkoff or Arthur Smith. Skyros has previously run writing trips by such literary luminaries as Hanif Kureishi, Margaret Drabble or Hilary Mantel. 

The Sunday Times - 23 January 2011
Skyros, one of the world's best holidays. How do the people at Skyros do it? Creative writing courses on this pretty little island have been taught by a roster of big names including Margaret Drabble, Hanif Kureishi and Sue Townsend.

The Stage - 4 November 2010
I am not the first to remark on how liberating this can be. I felt able to to take a deep breath and reflect on the previous months and years, undistracted by the clamour of workday life. The long history of ancient Greece felt alive around me and this, along with the stories of my students, encouraged me to take a longer, more measured view of things. Arthur Smith

Daily Telegraph - 2 July 2010
Celebrity Dream Homes: My perfect spot would be the Greek island of Skyros, where the poet Rupert Brooke died. It's a place where at night you can dance and party on the beach, as only Greeks know how, and still be awake to speak to the sunrise. The smell of warm pine trees, the sunlights on the sea: very different from the place I've just been living. Peter Owen Jones.

The Guardian - 19 April 2010
Novelist Barbara Rees (died in 2010) visited the Skyros Holistic Retreat Centre in Greece regularly for years. Between 1969 and 1978 she published six novels, including Diminishing Circles and Harriet Dark. She was described at the time as a ‘young writer of extraordinary gifts’. 

Manchester Evening News - 18 April 2010
Everything written about Skyros paints a picture of a paradise. You cannot be a journalist without become incredibly questioning about life. That said, a lot of the superlatives [about Skyros] were written by journalists, possibly far more cynical than me. The courses are excellent but I soon realised that they are simply adjunct to a wonderfully relaxed holiday. I'm not always good at staying in touch once I get back into my every day, but there are some people I met in Skyros who have already found a place in my heart - you know who you are. Carmel Thomason.

The Times - 8 March 2010
Skyros Centre: 'the sophisticated urbanite's retreat of choice.' Tom Fordyce                                                          

The Irish Times - 6 March 2010
It seems that, whatever way you sample Skyros, it has a huge impact, which is why people keep returning year after year. Ailbhe Brilley?

The Sunday Times - 10 January 2010
The 100 best summer holidays for 2010 Hear the one about the grumpy old man on the Greek island? Provide the punch line yourself after a week’s comedy-writing course taught by Balham’s favourite misanthrope, Arthur Smith. Or try a fortnight’s fiction course with James Scudamore — if the name’s familiar, it’s because it was in the frame for the 2009 Man Booker prize. Stephen Bleach

Daily Telegraph - 3 January 2010
Be More Creative. Stained glass and mosaic-making are two of this summer's creative courses offered by Skyros Holidays. The emphasis is on fun, and the aim to learn the skills and techniques needed to continue the craft once you return home. Sophie Butler

The Guardian Online - December 2009
[The Grange, Isle of Wight] A stylish wellbeing retreat that won't break the bank'. Caroline Sylger Jones

Bella - August 2009
Change your life in Greece. Amazing things happen on Skyros - just ask the visitor who return again and again. To see what the fuss is about, try one of the island's many courses. They range from singing to comedy improvisation. If you like a challenge, go for the Life Choices programme, which helps you rethink your career, health and relationships.

Telegraph Online - April 2009
Skyros, one of the prettiest of all Greek islands.

Evening Standard Magazine - 16 January 2009
Billed as ‘a community and singles’ holiday, this fortnight's break in Koh Chang island, Thailand, bookended by a night at the luxurious sofitel Silom in Bangkok, is for anyone: from Christmas-stressed wives who want to hit a luxurious spa, to holiday-makers with a yen to learn Thai massage or improve their singing, those who want to detox in colonial-style comfort and anyone with a personal issue to resolve (psychotherapist, author and Channel 4 presenter Malcolm Stern runs daily three-hour personal development sessions). The setting is exquisite with 639 square kilometres of virgin rainforest and white sandy beaches, and the spa is stunning , boasting smooth, glossy teak floors lit by tiny jewel-coloured candles and scented with orange oil. The Thai massage in a candlelit room teases out knots you didn’t know you had. There’s everything from aloe and lavender body wraps to facial and milk and floral baths. Anyone looking for a physical, mental or emotional clear-out will find the perfect crucible for just that. Marianne Macdonald

The Lady - January 2009
There is a magical quality about Atsitsa that is evident as soon as we approach the bay.... There is a surprising selection of courses to choose from, encompassing physical and sport activities to mind-focusing and even soul-searching couses. Susan Valentine.

Spirit & Destiny - January 2009
A friend had raved about Skyros' alternative, holistic holidays, with their courses run by top-notch tutors in a friendly community atmosphere. As some luxury and pampering was in order, too, I chose a holiday at a five-star hotel on the Thai island of Koh Chang. With a range of self-development, creative and holistic courses to choose from, I reckoned I'd rather learn Pilates in an open-air pavilion with sea views than down at my local grim gym. Amanda Riley-Jones

Body & Soul escapes (published by Footprint), December 2008 - Caroline Sylger Jones
Skyros, Greece. Before I went, people said to me 'Things happen on Skyros'. I felt that you couldn't go somewhere with that kind of expectation but, emotionally and spiritually, the impact of the holiday was enormous. It was inspiring. Surprising. More than I could have expected. Against the odds - namely my own cynicism, doubts and reserve - I gained an insight into me and the way I want to live my life. Back in the real world, this sort of thing gets lost all too easily under everyday stresses and other people's expectations, but having had that clarity once, I knew I could have it again: I knew I had it in me. What you give to the holiday, you get out. It's as simple as that, so pour your heart into it. Olivia Mackinder

Body & Soul escapes, Britain & Ireland (published by Footprint) - December 2008
The Grange, Isle of Wight. An elegant 19th-century country house, set down a quiet lane with sea views, it's a luxurious setting for a year-round offering of creative and personal development breaks.... The 17 elegant bedrooms are decked out in calming shades with splashes of colour, good linens and contemporary art. Caroline Sylger Jones

Woman & Home - November 2008
It felt brave, going on a salsa dancing holiday to Cuba on my own, but as soon as I checked into the iconic Habana Libre Hotel, once Fidel Castro's headquarters following the revolution in 1959, it felt thrilling too. When I met the rest of the group for mojitos in the 1950s-style hotel bar on the first evening, I was soon enjoying myself. By the end of the trip, no one wanted to leave. And, eight months on, we're all in touch, passionate about salsa and still going to classes in the UK.

Spirit & Destiny - November 2008
By the end of the week, we're all firm friends and swap numbers, promising to keep in touch. One thing's for sure - dancing salsa will never be the same in England, and after the last of many mojitos on our final night, we all agree that the only thing to do is come back.

Financial Times - 11 October 2008
The courses I chose on Skyros were foot reflexology and Commedia dell'Arte acting. This might seem a peculiar combination but both were inspired choices. In particular, the reflexology course, which took place on a series of mornings in an outdoor clearing, surrounded by pine trees high above the bay of Atsitsa, was something I would not have missed for anything. Harry Eyres

Red - August 2008
‘By 2004, I had been a TV producer for seven years, working on chat shows like Richard & Judy and Paul O’Grady. It was fun at first but, as I approached 30, I was gettting increasingly disillusioned. .. That summer I went on a Skyros holiday in Greece... At Skyros, there’s a you-can-do-anything atmosphere.. I sat looking at the sun, glinting off the sea, and it was the most beautiful place. I realised psychology was what I wanted to do... Within six months of the holiday, I’d quit my job and was starting clinical psychology training... I now realise that helping people is what I always wanted to do.  I didn’t really know who I was until I went on that holiday. If I hadn’t gone I’d still be a TV producer’. Jennie Dempster.

The Daily Telegraph - 5 July 2008
Fantastic Breaks... Suzy Bennett takes her pick of the best: the Skyros holistic retreat, on the Greek island of the same name, runs courses in yoga, meditation, writing and life-coaching as well as more active pursuits such as sailing, belly dancing and trapeze.

The Irish Times - Dublin Saturday 7 June 2008
There’s a joke, as old as the hills, about two journalists who meet in a pub. One says: ‘I'm writing a novel.’ The other replies: ‘Neither am I.’ Recognising myself in this lame gag for more years than I care to remember, I booked a place on a writer's course on the small Greek island of Skyros. Reader, I had high hopes. These morphed into my wildest of dreams when I learned that our tutor was the Sri Lankan writer Romesh Gunesekera, author of several gorgeous novels, including the Booker-nominated Reef. I'm not saying I expected to come home with the makings of a top literary prize in my newly purchased stash of hardback notebooks. But I will confess to daydreaming, just a teeny bit, that the extra tuition under blue skies could elevate me to Enright-style acclaim.....
[Roisín went to Skyros and] by the end of the week I had loosened up in the workshop and even produced a couple of pieces I could be proud of. Not so proud that I would rehash them here, you understand, but quietly pleased. Under Gunesekera's supportive eye we invented words, practised writing dialogue and listened in wonder to the stories that unfolded. I learned that you get can get a lot written in five- or even two-minute bursts and that my daily protestation ‘I just don't have enough time to write’ might not be strictly true. So am I writing a novel? The answer is still no. But after a week on Skyros I may be inching ever closer to making a start.

The Guardian - Saturday 7 June 2008
The Guardian named Skyros as the No 1 of the World's Five Best Writing Holidays. Christopher Hope and Rachel Cusk among others, it said, will be providing 'inspiration for aspiring writers'.

The Financial Times - 10/11 May 2008
I have now been in Skyros five times... Each visit is coloured by the memories of previous visits, so that my time on Skyros is a weave of past and present. Here is the pine-backed beach where Patricia and Pippa and Kate and I, after a hot, four-hour walk across the island, threw off our clothes and ran yelling into the water. Here is the bench where Ian and I sat at dawn and watched a fat orange sun hoist itself out of the ocean, a fishing boat motoring towards it as if dispatched by some primitive king to find out what it was made of. Here is the precipitous path that my up-for-anything 91-year-old student Hugh braved so that he too could swim off the nude beach... Skyros has taught me that travel is like love: as you get older, the appeal of newness wears thin. There is something richer, more layered, and ultimately more beautiful, about knowledge acquired over time. Susan Elderkin

Health & Fitness - May 2008
Salsa classes by day, hot Havana clubs by night - all you need for an authentic Cuban holiday. The moment I hear about Skyros Cuba, a new holiday where you learn to salsa in Havana - I just have to go. After 10 fantastic days, we're all sad at the thought of going home. The only consolation is we're taking back wonderful memories and some great new salsa moves.

Spirit & Destiny - April 2008
Unleash your sensual potential on a tantalizing new holiday on the Greek island of Skyros.

Guardian Online - 20 March 2008
Best new age holiday: Skyros
The first and still the best. I haven't met anyone who's been there who didn't love it.

Observer Online - 9 March 2008
Skyros Holidays offers a life-coaching programme that can be tailored to specific needs, which can include improving personal relationships. Situated on the sleepy Greek island of Skyros, the holidays aim to provide a relaxing environment with good food, comfortable accommodation and gentle workshops, yoga classes and discussions to help each guest reach a better understanding of what motivates them and what they are striving for.

The Daily Mail - 12 January 2008
Dancers with two left feet should head to the Havana Libre Hotel in Cuba... Come Dancing wannabes can practise their moves with their own local dance partner and soothe aching muscles with an early-morning yoga session. You'll have plenty of time to visit the beach and explore the old town. Dancing in the street is optional. Take home the ability to dance in public without embarrassment.

The Sunday Times - 6 January 2008
I have had one life-changing holiday - on the Greek island of Skyros... I had just given up my job with Shell. I wasn't quite sure what to do with my life, so I enrolled on a creative-writing course and learnt how to do massage, in the hope that something would occur to me. People kept saying that I was really funny, and ought to be a comedian, so I thought I'd give it a go. Jimmy Carr

TimesOnline - 30 December 2007
Always good to learn something on a holiday. Surfing, painting, tantric sex... Tantric sex? Yes, it's a thoroughly educational course on the Greek island of Skyros, where intimacy experts Martin and Hanna Jeffs will spend a solid fortnight in August leading workshops titled The Energy of Love.

The Independent - 24 November 2007
There was a wide selection of courses to choose from... the [Dream Workshop] course was fascinating. David Robbins

The Times - 25 July 2007
(Skyros-in-Cambodia) One of the 'top Five Adventure Retreats'. Caroline Sylger Jones

The Telegraph - 25 June 2007
Atsitsa Bay is best for activity-based courses while Skyros Village specialises in life-coaching and writing. Sophie Butler

TimesOnline - 19 June 2007
The most talked about holistic holiday experience destination in Europe since it was founded in 1979, Skyros offers a multi-layered holiday experience which, at its most gentle, means relaxation, socialising and great food and, at its most profound, the confidence and insight to change your life.Caroline Sylger Jones

The Birmingham Post - 17 March 2007
I was stunned when I saw them. They (the Atsitsa group) looked transformed. A week earlier these had been pasty, stressed faces and bodies, yet they now looked rejuvenated. And it wasn’t just the tan. Of course, our Skyros Centre group was the same, but we hadn’t noticed it among ourselves. Clive Leighton

Jewish Chronicle - 2 March 2007
Skyros is different because it is opening up participants to possibilities. What you take back from this island is more than you get from a typical holiday. Sharon Garfinkel

Daily Express - 5 September 2006
After a week on the island of Skyros, I feel fitter, calmer and braver than I have for a long time. It felt as though we were close to nature and, as time went on, close to each other. Rachel Baird

The Guardian - 15 April 2006
Skyros is inspirational in itself and even Adrian Mole enjoyed a writing course there.

Evening Standard - April 2006
Ken Eyerman is a bit of a legend; he's been pummelling dancers into shape for 25 years. I came away knowing my body much better - and feeling I'd seen an expert.

Greece Magazine - February 2006
Tonight there’s a full moon and we’re planning celebrations - a healing in the magic circle, a late night walk to the threshing field, a skinny-dipping party...I’ll join the chill out dancers on the bar terrace. Crysse Morrison

Wave Magazine - November/December 2005
Stressed out by Christmas? Make tracks for the exclusive Skyros resort in Thailand. White beaches, world-renowned cuisine and life changing courses await...

Elle - September 2005
Abandoning every last vestige of dignity, I find myself humming to this group of strangers. Later on, I look in the mirror and decide my eyes are beautiful. Something has definitely shifted in the way I see myself.

New Statesman - 22 August 2005
Vasso made wonderful traditional stews: peas and carrots; butter beans; potato, tomato and onion; spinach with chickpeas. The spinach, called horta, was stronger-tasting than ours. We ate it cold, hot, layered inside pastries, in omelettes. Vasso made excellent taramasalta and hummus. Her robust salads mixed tomatoes with cubed feta and cucumber chunks. Asked to provide green salad, she brought in wild rocket. For breakfast she gave us porridge, muesli, yoghurt, fruit salad and custard-filled pastries. The spiritual athletes wolfed the lot. Michèle Roberts

Greece Magazine - July/August 2005
A landscape of stunning blue skies and seas, with whitewashed chapels and gnarled olive trees, can't fail to inspire the most jaded mind. Crysse Morrison

Sunday Tribune Dublin - 10 July 2005
The courses are only one part of the many elements that make up the Skyros experience - for an experience is definitely what it is... Returning home after a week on Skyros was like waking up from a dream: when friends asked how it was, it was hard to think of anything more specific to say than an expansive 'Wonderful'... I would have been brokenhearted to leave had I not known that I had made good friends that I would keep in touch with. Roberta Gray

The Observer - 19 June 2005
To read Skyros press coverage is to choke on cliche: words like 'life changing', 'transforming'. Yet at the end of two weeks, Skyros has been all these things. Kate Rew

TLS - June 2005
Welcome to the world of honouring, empowerment, openness, issues, respect and concern. Hugo Williams

Insight - March 2005
Skyros Holidays offers the definitive holistic holiday experience... You'll go home with new skills, new experiences and renewed enthusiasm. Naomi Zwei

The Observer - 20 March 2005
Skyros, The doyenne of alternative holidays. Gemma Bowes

E.S. Magazine - 18 March 2005
You can take a writing course, something much more wild and wacky which will change your life, or just relax. Andrew Davies

The Guardian - 13 February 2005
People have been heading to the Greek island of Skyros - home of the original holistic holiday - in search of sunshine and self-improvement for 25 years. Now the Skyros experience will be available closer to home with a new centre on the Isle of Wight. Linsey McNeill

Big Issue - February 2005
When you're chained to your desk on a Monday, today's stressed rat racer knows there is more to time off than than a re-creation of life in London. Bel Jacobs

Independent - 25 September 2004
Currently, there are two market leaders in the creative-writing sector. Well into its 35th year, the Arvon Foundation boasts Ted Hughes as its earliest patron. The same goes for the Skyros Centre in Greece, which has been running its writers' courses for 14 years, and boasts tutors such as Margaret Drabble, Sue Townsend and Steven Berkoff.

Health and Fitness - September 2004
Atsitsa is probably the perfect holiday. It's hard to think how two weeks could be better spent... It's hard to put into words such a profoundly intense holiday. The joy of getting to know people whose ages and backgrounds were totally irrelevant, combined with the excitement of achieving goals and breaking old perceptions, made the experience all the more special... Everyone brings back their personal memories of Atsitsa. I'd never laughed so much or enjoyed such a range of emotions - all in the space of a fortnight. With such a great bunch of caring, supportive people. I returned rejuvenated, healthy, and more positive and with three new close friends. Tracey Jennings

Yoga Magazine - July 2004
One of the key attractions is the sheer scale and variety of what is on offer. There is an embarrassment of riches on the timetable and a wealth of talent among both teaching and permanent staff. .. Most people don't know why they have come to the Aleppo pines of Greece to start or further their journey. But where could be better than a land rich in story and history, gods and goddesses, a land that understands life in a way now lost to most of us. Simon Heathcote

Here's Health Magazine - 2004
Skyros Holistic Holidays voted as Highly Commended by Here's Health Best Holistic Break in the Natural Health Awards 2004

The Times - 24 April 2004
My final performance. An ambitious solo. The participants look on. Even those willing me to fail must at least appear supportive. During The Wind Beneath my Wings I soar to the snowy peaks of a previously unscaled vocal range. Greg wipes a tear, or possibly some dust, from his eye. “You are now,” he says, before the assembled group, “a trainable tenor.” Mentally, I polish my first gold disc. My voice healed, I fly home, singing to myself. Damian Barr

Time Out - 5 May 2004
Despite initial reservations, I found myself relaxing into the warmth and camaraderie of the group. I talked for England, laughed, danced Zorba-like on the terrace as the sun set, reflected on life and the universe, boogied the night away in the local Music Bar and drank too much retsina. I didn't touch a newspaper or look at a TV, and London felt a million miles away. By the end of a fortnight, I came back inspired to find local singing classes and with a resolution to stick with my creative writing. Not exactly a dramatic transformation, but a great way to recharge. I even got a tan. Rebecca Taylor

Sunday Telegraph Sydney - March 2004

The games people play on the Greek island of Skyros have nothing to do with fitness, stamina or winning medals. Instead they're all about conquering your fears, freeing your spirit and having the sort of fun you probably haven't since you were a small kid. Deb Hunt

The Guardian - 5 December 203
Skyros is mainly a place for singles. Its very laid-back atmosphere puts you in a very relaxed state that makes you feel much better about yourself than you do at home and easier to meet each other. It's the ideal place to put your flirting skills into action. Peta Heskell

Travel Insights - 2003
Skyros is an alternative holiday center. At its core is the ideal of expanding our horizons as well as our minds, and liberating our creative, childlike spirits. a Skyros experience has more lasting power than your average vacation. It can change people in ways that last well beyond the tan. And, as long as Skyros holidays exist, none of us need ever again feel terror at the prospect of a solo vacation. Debbra Mikaelsen

Woman and Home - September 2003
We got on the ferry as total strangers and came off it after two hours as firm friends... What could be more rewarding than spending your holiday in a beautiful place and returning with a new skill?... It was a magical fortnight. I felt absolutely liberated. Diana Jones

Top Sante - June 2003
I felt inspired and optimistic about the future and what I could make of it. I'd relaxed, had fun and learnt new skills. Best of all was the simple realisation that I had it in me to feel good about myself. Leah Hellen

InStyle - January 2003
I felt relaxed immediately, walking on to the balcony of the centre, lit by candles, nestled in the hill-top village of Skyros, I did think 'this is heaven'. Gaynor Faye

Woman - Autumn 2002
The most wonderful legacy is the memory of having laughed more in two weeks that I can remember since childhood. Tracey Pocock

The Weekend Australian - 28 September 2002
An environment that is supportive, social and, most important, a bloody good laugh. Jane Cornwell

The Observer - 25 August 2002
Going on the holiday gave me the confidence to make some decisions. When I got back I moved jobs, moved flat and got my motorbike licence. But the most rewarding aspect was the friends I made. Judith Linder

The Daily Express - 27 June 2002
On this idyllic island my life changed for ever. Gaby Ochsenbein

Here's Health - March 2002
You make friends for life. John Hargreaves.

Sacred Space Journal - Spring 2002
A beautiful opportunity to rethink your life, discover your own truth and determine what really matters to you. Jane Salvage

The Independent
Let your hair down, take risks, expand horizons, go on a Skyros holistic holiday. Mariella Frostrup

The Guardian - 20 October 2001Skyros holidays are among the very few that an intelligent single person can thoroughly enjoy without either feeling out of place or compelled to play the mating game. A few romances did develop, but Atsitsa's great achievement lies in its ability to create a climate that makes possible a meeting of minds in which the barriers of age and gender dissolve and people experience that rarest of treats - simply being valued for who they really are, with no strings attached. Moyra Bremner

The Guardian - 10 May 2001
I can't recommend the holidays enough - it revitalised my approach to life. Zoe Badcock

Independent - 29 September 2000
To mark National Poetry Day the Arts Council of England is currently running a promotion of Contemporary Poetry in selected bookshops that features books by 10 of the finest British poets writing today. But there's a further cause for poetic celebration. Independent readers can win a holiday and writing course on the Greek island of Skyros next spring. Skyros, Europe's first alternative holiday centre and world leader in the field, offers the winner a prize of two weeks' holiday.

The Irish Times Dublin - 22 July 2000
Half an hour later, my budding authors were in business, perspiring but eager. They had written pages. It was all fresh and good and entertaining. Clare Boylan

House & Garden - July 2000
We were led through a forest of lush tropical plants to the air-conditioned wooden bungalows that would be home for the next two weeks... I danced and hugged and sobbed and laughed like a schoolgirl. By the end of the week, I was hooked.Vanessa Nicolson

Marie Claire - November 1999
In the evenings, we got together in the bar to discuss our personal triumphs and insights with a renewed enthusiasm for life. Kerry Clark

Sunday Express - 25 April 1999
A relaxed and genuine atmosphere of mutual encouragement, laughter and learning which provides a haven for creativity and self-awareness. Jane Warren

Dateline Magazine - April 1999
I rediscovered the fun-loving, caring and most of all uncynical side of myself. Natascha Mirosch

Time Out 31 - March 1999
I had anticipated that a new-age fog of earnest escapism might cloud the air. My scepticism was evaporated. They've got the balance right. A healthy realism prevails. Sarah Kent

Sunday Independent Dublin - 10 January 1999
Quite honestly, the best holiday of my life...I feel I made bonds that will last a lifetime because the friendships were based on getting to know the real me and vice versa. Anne Roper

Red - January 1999
Moonlight swims and impromptu discos. Melissa de Villiers

Evening Standard - 23 October 1998
A sense of community, a chance to try new activities... a freedom from the tyranny of the business meeting, the mobile phone and the business plan. Lesley Garner

The Guardian - 26 September 1998
I immediately fell in love with the place as everybody does... I kept thinking, 'I am an actor in A Midsummer Night's Dream; this is Arcadia, I want to live like this for ever'. Sue Townsend

Cosmopolitan - August 1998
'I want to marry you', he said. I think I screamed. My heart felt so huge I thought it might burst. We had a service on the (Atsitsa) beach and another when we returned to Britain, and we now have two children'. Noelle Adcock-McElya

Independent - 9 May 1998
Though well supplied with bars and tavernas, the island is delightfully untouristy. A cluster of cube-like white houses with wooden balconies that blaze with bougainvillaea and geraniums, the town straggles over a hillside beneath the remains of an old fort. Most of its flagstone alleys are too narrow and steep for any traffic other than pedestrians and donkeys. An inspiring setting. This year’s teachers include Andrew Davies, Rachel Billington, Nell Dunn, D M Thomas and Sue Townsend. John Harrison

The Financial Times - 9 May 1998
Some magic at work inspires people. Angela Wigglesworth

The Daily Mail - 9 May 1998
We swam and sunbathed... with dolphins leaping and diving off the bow. At the end of two weeks our group was as close as many friends become in a lifetime. Paul Mansfield

Health & Fitness - April 1998
The blossoming creativity is truly awe-inspiring. But it's only during the holiday climax, the famous Atsitsa cabaret, that we realise just how far we've come. Mary Comber

Oldie - November 1997
And so we went round, eating the baklava, drinking the wine and deciding life wasn't so bad after all when you were a writer on a Greek island. Nell Dunn

Sainsbury's Magazine - April 1997
'I thought it would be full of hippy New Agers', he says, 'which isn't me at all'. A fortnight later, however, he was a changed man. 'It's simply a magical place', he explains.

The Age, Sydney - 30 December 1996
What did I gain from Skyros? A better understanding of myself and a sense of being fully alive. Add to that new friendships, laughter and excellent food and drink. My tan was just a bonus. Paul Mansfield

Sunday Telegraph - 18 February 1996
'Skyros isn't unreal' was his conclusion. 'In fact, it's a hell of a lot more real than most people are used to'. Paul Mansfield

The Guardian - 20 January 1996
'I'd like to appreciate everyone who supported me last night after my second bottle of retsina.' As the laughter dies down, I realise we're here to enjoy ourselves. David Newnham

The Observer - 5 November 1995
Even Hugo Williams, the licensed sceptic of Skyros, says: 'The whole thing is a lesson in uncynicism'. Janet Watts

Daily Mirror - 23 July 1994
The island is virtually untouched by tourism. Alison Field

Here's Health - May 1994
Atsitsa is a magical, healing place that brings out the best in people... Atsitsa attracts some of the world's best teachers. Janet Barcroft

The Times - 16 April 1994
As evening fell, we reached the bay of Atsitsa, where the sun shed an iridescent pink sheen over Homer's wine-dark sea, creating one of those moments so stunningly beautiful that you cannot bear for it to end... Intellectual rigour, spiritual encounters and good old-fashioned rioting in the evening. Angela Neustatter

TLS - 29 October 1993
Holidays you can take home with you. Hugo Williams

ITV: First Tuesday - 7 September 1993
It's almost like living your life in a fortnight.

The Independent on - Sunday 15 August 1993
I found it awesome discussing my creative attempts with a celebrated novelist (Bernice Rubens) who has more than 30 books to her credit. But as I became enthusiastic about my work so did she, and shyness evaporated in a spirited exchange. Probably the most important thing she gave me was the confidence to continue. We has all taken the workshop seriously enough to produce something of our own, and I did enjoy a memorable holiday in a special place with an agreeable bunch of people, some of whom have become good friends. Nicole Swengley

BBC2: Travel Show - 5 August 1993
Skyros is a great place to meet people and the food is always delicious. Matthew Collins

The Independent - 10 July 1993
The barriers were down, the daily massages and hugs were de rigeur. At last we were a little community. Naturally, not many wanted to go home.  Rose Rouse

Sueddeutsche Zeitung Dienstag - 16 March 1993
Und so ergibt sich die gelungene Verbindung von Entspannung und Austausch: Das Skyros-Erlebnis lebt aus der Verquickung zwischen aeusserer und innerer Waerme, eben zwischen Sonne und Seelenleben. Kaevan Gazdar
Translation: And so the result is a successful combination of relaxation and exchange. The Skyros experience lives from the interlacing between outer and inner heat, just between sun and soul life. Kaevan Gazdar

Green Magazine - February 1993
Atsitsa makes you feel more aware of yourself, the elements, and above all, other people. Alistair Townley

The Sunday Telegraph - 2 January 1993
People go to Club Med to forget themselves. At Atsitsa they hope to find themselves, or at least some interesting, new and undiscovered bit. Lesley Garner

The Vegetarian - September 1992
Whatever you come expecting to find, you're sure to go home a different person. The change may be subtle, but it's there. Tina Courtney

BBC Radio Four: Breakw

Share this page
Share on Twitter Share on Google Plus