Hitting the Beach Near Thessaloniki
Any beaches within the bay of Thessaloniki are too polluted to be pleasant, or even safe, although people do swim at them. Beaches in the communities of Perea and Ayia Triada, 16 to 24km (10-15 miles) along the bay east of the city, are considered reasonably safe. Just past Ayia Triada, on the headland of the bay, is the Greek National Tourism Organization facility of Akti Thermaikou, which has a children's playground, changing cabins, snack bars, and tennis courts.
Strolling or Cruising in Thessaloniki
Taking what the Greeks call a volta (stroll) along the seaside promenade, particularly at sunset or under a full moon, is one of the greatest pleasures of being in Thessaloniki. It's also a great way to unwind after visiting the Archaeological and Byzantine museums, inland from the east end of the promenade. Around the White Tower, you'll see lots of peanut vendors, balloon sellers, pony rides for the children, and at least one horse-drawn carriage, all yours for no more than a few euros.
You might also decide to take an hour (or longer) to cruise the harbor on one of the small excursion boats (one dolled up as a pirate ship, another as Jason's Argonaut) that dock near the tower. Posted signs advertise cruises of different lengths and prices. One warning: The harbor can smell pretty ripe in hot weather. If possible, take your cruise on a slightly chilly day with a brisk wind.