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The municipality Volos was formed at the 2011 local government reform by the merger of the following 9 former municipalities, that became municipal units: Volos is the administrative centre of the Magnesia regional unit.

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There are also connections to Limnos, Lesvos, Chios and Skyros.Modern Volos is built on the area of the ancient cities of Demetrias, Pagasae and Iolcos.Golos either originated from the Slavic word Golos, which means seat of administration.Or from Gol which means bald, naked, as the area has sparse vegetation.Two alternative theories allude to a Greek origin through the words βολή (throw), as fishermen threw their nets into the sea from that area, and βώλος (piece of land).

In the 14 century Volos came under the control of Serbia, subsequent conquest by the Republic of Venice and the Catalans led to a big drop in the local population.

To the west of Volos lie the Neolithic settlements of Dimini, with a ruined acropolis, walls, and two beehive tombs dating to between 4000-1200 BC, Sesklo, with the remains of the oldest acropolis in Greece (6000 BC), and also the foundations of a palace and mansions During the course of the 8th century, mainland Greece was subjected to numerous Bulgarian raids.

At the end of the century, a large scale Bulgarian military expedition headed by the chieftain Akamir was launched from Belasica.

The Bulgarians plundered Thessalia, from their encampment which was located between modern day Volos and Velestino.

The Byzantines called those Bulgarians Velegizitas or Vielesti.

During the Axis occupation of Greece, the prompt actions of the local chief rabbi, Moshe Pessach, and the Greek authorities, saved about 700 of the local Jewish community from deportation to the Nazi death camps.