Skopelos has its own unique, and occasionally scandalous, way of celebrating the February karnavali, with traditions stretching back in island history and into pre-Christian culture.

 

The highlights of the February festival are the trata, when young men carry burning fishing boats through the streets, and i kales, a riotous pagan mock wedding with links to the cult of Dionysus. Traditional costume, family celebrations, satirical songs and much food and drink are essential ingredients in this last indulgence before the meat-less month of Lent.

Folklore Dances

 

Centuries of island custom and costume, music and dance, are kept alive by the groups who dedicate themselves to preserving traditional folk dance on Skopelos. Like the February karnavali and the skills of the island’s musicians, these maintain a living link with island history, and are rooted in community celebrations, with costumed dances specific to weddings and other family occasions, civic events, seasonal festivities and religious holy days.