Greece is amongst the most popular Mediterranean destinations known for its world-class beaches, wines, and people. The warm weather and exquisite green waters of the many Greek islands are a perfect setting for a relaxing vacation or a romantic getaway. These are full of pearly beaches and are flowing with music and wine and the distinctive culture that has made Greece a tourist hotspot.
The Best Greek Islands
We bet you didn’t know the Greek archipelago comprises of almost 6000 islands, of which, only 227 are inhabited! However, no two islands are the same. So, here is our pick of the 15 best Greek islands along with what they are best known for:
One of the most beautiful Greek Islands in the Ionian Sea, an elongated bay in the Mediterranean, Zakynthos has the best beaches, set against the backdrop of jaw-dropping cliffs. The Shipwreck Beach on Zakynthos is the best pick of the lot, and that realization has made it pretty crowded. Even then, this beach, accessible by boat only, is something that you need to see. The Northern, mountainous portion of the beach is the quieter side, ideal to spend a peaceful day.
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Corfu may be the best island if you want to spend time away from the world with your family. There are portions on the Corfu coast, namely Kavos, where some of the virulent tourism of the other islands has taken over, but the inlands are quieter. There are also plenty of family-oriented hotels that are known for their hospitality. Corfu is also a major stop on the Greek islands ferry routes, so it is easy to get here.
Suggested Read: 10 Hotels in Greece That Are A Treat For The Senses!
If you are a history or mythology buff, Delos will not disappoint you. Delos is where the mythological Apollo was born. There are also extensive remains of ancient temples, statues, and a theatre spread throughout the island.
Greek hotels and resorts have gotten a bad reputation over the years. Mykonos, however, has surprisingly great places to stay. Offering a range of refreshing boutique hotels that are charming and modern, the island is a great place to base your vacation around and is on the list of the best Greek islands to visit in July.
Suggested Read: These 10 Villas In Greece Will Redefine Your Taste For Luxury
This is the perfect island if you are looking to taste the revival of Greek cuisine. Agro tourism is catching on with the increasing popularity of shows and books featuring traveling chefs. If that inspires you, Crete’s farms are the best place to have authentic regional food. Raki or Tsikoudia, distilled locally, should also be tried with the food.
If you are the one for wine, Kefalonia is one of the Greek islands you must visit. The Robola winery is based here, and with the exquisite beaches, you can have a great drunken vacation here. For the connoisseurs, there are two main wine routes where most tours are run. The longest starts in Argostoli and up the Agios Gerasimos and then jumps into the middle of the Robola vineyards.
This Cycladic island in the Aegean Sea may be the quietest place in Greece. There are no roads on this island. Only a small fishing community of about 300 people lives here. Until recently, there was no electricity either! The rustic charm of the place also makes it one of the best Greek islands for couples.
In spite of the ominous name, this rustic Greek island is nothing but harmless. There are no cars here; only mules and donkeys that get you from place to place. All construction was banned when Hydra became an architectural reserve, and the island gives you the feel of being lost in time.
Andros is the perfect getaway for hikers, full of trails that take you through orange and mulberry groves, pine valleys, streams full of terrapin frogs. Most hiking trails lead up to the Panachronotos Monastery, where two desolate monks take donations in a centurion’s skull.
The perfect romantic getaway, Symi’s Harbour is the prettiest thing you will see. Full of colorful houses, bars and boats, the island is a haven for tourists. There are plenty of tiny beaches where you can go on a boat, and most of them have no people. The food in Symi is also wonderful, and you can find small, romantic lodges inland. It is hands down amongst the best Greek islands for couples!
Suggested Read: Things To Do In Greece For An Epic Mediterranean Vacation!
Part of the Sporades cluster in north west Aegean, Skyros is not quite built up as the others. It is popular with tourists for holistic holidays. In Atsitsa Bay, you can learn sailing, painting, music, yoga, dancing, and a host of other soulful activities. Skyros, like Mykonos, is one of the best Greek islands to visit in July.
In the midst of extensive resorts and bars, you rarely experience the traditional life of the islanders. The Greek islands have a life that is not quite like that of the mainland, and nowhere is it more obvious than Karpathos. Only moderately popular as a tourist destination, Karpathos has quite a number of beautiful beaches and coves. The villages here are also delightful, and for people seeking peaceful escapes, the small lodge situated along the seaside village is perfect. You can walk to the beaches and have local Greek food in small eateries frequented only by the locals.
No Greek islands holiday is ever complete without experiencing the Greek villa, with their exotic colors and stone floors. Skopelos has the most varied and beautiful options – Villa Aetoma outside of Skopelos Town is a favourite of the visitors. The other thing Skopelos is known for are its monasteries. There are several dozens of them, scattered throughout the island. Mount Palouki, rising on the Southeast end of Skopelos, has ten alone, and tourists often hike up to them for a fun afternoon activity.
The volcanic island is cratered in several places, and Stefanos, the largest crater, has an ominous beauty. While there are some extensive beaches on the island and great food, Nisyros is truly for you if you love geology and the unsettling beauty of volcanic formations.
If you are single and looking for a fun holiday in Greece, you should head to the Dodecanese island of Rhodes. Said to be one of the best Greek islands for nightlife (and that is tough competition!), there are plenty of world class bars in Rhodes Town. Platia Arionos and Miltiadou are most popular with visitors. Like other Greek islands, cruises depart from Rhodes too.
Further Read: 10 Magnificent Places To Visit In Greece
This is not an exhaustive list of Greek islands, and there are many others that offer loads of experiences. In fact, whether you believe it or not, there are even 11 Greek islands for sale right now! The beaches, the food and the people make for the perfect well rounded vacation, so book your trip to Greece with us now for the most memorable trip of your life!
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