Because of its relative isolation Ouranoupolis has not been affected by mass tourism. It was founded in 1922, when approximately 50 families, Greek refugees from Asia Minor arrived under the auspices of the League of Nations, looking for a new home. The land was provided by Mount Athos and each family was given an one bedroom house, an arid plot of land and ten sheep. Without a road to connect it to the rest of the world the village remained isolated and life was hard. In 1947 the locals took shovels and spades and cut a crude dirt-track road which ended the isolation and brought the very first adventurous tourists to the village.
Currently, Mount Athos-related trade and pilgrimage is the biggest source of income for the village.
Ouranoupolis can be reached by bus, car or taxi from Thessaloniki.
To get by bus, you have to get to Chalkidiki Bus Station, located south of Thessaloniki. To get to this bus station you can take bus 45A from the commuter bus station adjacent to Thessaloniki Train Station: Chalkidiki Bus Station is the final stop. Schedule information can be found at www.ktel-chalkidikis.gr.
Most places in the village can be reached by foot.
If you do not plan -or are not allowed- to enter Mount Athos, you can take a sightseeing tour of the Holy Mountain by boat. This is the only available option for women who may want to get a glimpse of the monasteries. Inquire in the village, as many agencies perform the service.
Souvenirs are mostly of religious nature. The following is an incomplete list of items you may buy to take with you:
Many restaurants are available along the main road and the beach.
Many restaurants are available along the main road and the beach that offer drinks, but they do not keep open until late.
An Internet cafe is available in the village's main road.