Paralia Katerini is one of the most famous holiday destinations on mainland Greece. A destination where the holiday is the beach, taverns, parties and the greek spirit. A destination with a beautiful history, whose remains can be visited in the surroundings. Paralia is the beach of Katerini. And Katerini is a town in Central Macedonia, the capital of Pieria regional unit. The town sits in a beautiful landscapes, between Olympus Mountain and the Thermaikos Gulf, at 14 metres an altitude. Katerini is near Thessaloniki – the second largest city in Greece.
Known as a relatively new city, Katerini is just 6 kilometers from the beach and some of the most famous archaeological sites of mainland Greece. His surrounding area show his history. Among the attractions in the surrounding area are the ancient city of Dion (5th century BC, 17 kilometres away), the Castle of Platamon, the ancient Leivithra – at 27 kilometres away, and the beautiful town of Litochoro – who lies at the base of Mount Olympus, at 20 kilometres from the centre of Katerini. Also, near to Katerini you will find beaches of Korinos, Paralia and Olympiaki Akti (or Katerinoskala). During the summer, these are places visited by both Greeks and tourists from different corners of the world.
Name of Katerini
No one knows exactly the origin of the name . The modern town of Katerini was probably founded during Ottoman rule. However, maps and travelers’ writings show that in this place, in the 13th century, was a place called Hatera (Ἅτηρα). The first theory tell us that the name Katerini is relatively new. It’s reported that Felix Beaujour recorded the name of „Katheri”, and François Pouqueville gives the name of the settlement as „Kateri Hatera”. Another theory says that „Katerini” comes from the small chapel dedicated to Saint Catherine (Aikaterini in Greek).
The beautiful chapel lies to the east of the town and and dates back to at least the early 19th century. In 16 October 1912, during the First Balkan War, Katerini was captured by the Greek 7th Infantry Division. And since then, the town has been part of Greece. With the population exchange between Greece and Turkey in 1923, the town’s muslims left, and Greek refugees, particularly from Eastern Thrace and Greek Evangelicals from Asia Minor, took their place. That was the moment when Katerini almost doubling his population from 5.540 in 1920, to 10.138 in 1928.