Greece is, undeniably, a tourist trap. And for good reason. Beautiful weather, stunning scenery, a rich and diverse history, culinary delights and an inviting culture all contribute to the alluring nature of Greece. It has something to offer everyone, from the sun worshipper to the culture vulture. But if you’re looking for a place to visit and explore that the masses haven’t discovered yet, then head to the Greek Islands. There are some that are just as touristy as the famous parts of the mainland, but if you’re really searching for a sense of seclusion and discovery, then the Greek Islands are where you need to be.
An idyll in the Aegean Sea, the island is a beauty. According to Greek mythology, the goddesses Artemis and Selene convinced Zeus to raise the sunken island to the surface and Patmos was born. Surrounded by crystal clear blue water, white sandy beaches and bays make this island great for those who love the sun, whereas the Monastery of St John provides interesting spiritual history. There is a surprisingly exciting nightlife too for those who like to party the night away.
Chalki (or Halki)
This island is one of the smallest inhabited islands in the Aegean Sea. There is one village, named Emborio and the population of around 300 hundred is split between the village and the port. Listed as one of UNESCO’s world heritage sites, the island offers secluded beaches, neoclassical architecture, a medieval castle and clear blue waters begging to be swum in.
Another world heritage site, Samos is north of Patmos in the eastern Aegean Sea. Famous Greeks such as Pythagoras, Epicurus and Aristarchus were born here, and showcases a feat of ancient engineering with its Eupalinian aqueduct. Greek history is rich on this island, but that’s not all it has to offer. Vineyards cover the hills, making it one of the greenest of Greece’s islands. If you go to Samos, there is no denying yourself a try of their best export, Samian wine. Learn about, and taste, the wines that they produce in the Viticultural Union of Samos’ museum. A large island, Samos is an island that needs a car for exploration, but they are easily rented.
The larger of the Greek islands are easily filled with a whole range of different types of accommodation. Many of these hidden gems are easily discoverable by boat, so staying on a larger island where you have access to everything you might need is a great way to spend a holiday.