There are so many fabulous Greek islands to choose from. Are you having trouble deciding on which to visit? Check out our 10 favourite Greek islands as inspiration for your next holiday.

 


Hydra

Only a day and a half’s sailing from Athens, you can find the rocky island of Hydra. The island’s main town, by the same name, rises steeply from the harbour and into the hills above. Many of the homes on the island were built by rich sailors. Now during the summer, the island is a firm favourite among jetsetters. Hydra is also known as the hideaway of legendary poet and musician Leonard Cohen. He used to travel here in order to get away from the spotlight, and he even bought a house on the island in the 1960ies which is still owned by his family today. Hydra is a must-see when sailing in The Saronic Gulf.

Sejlerferie ved Hydra

 

Poros

Even though Poros is only separated from the Peloponnese peninsula by a narrow strip of ocean, you’ll still get the full island experience here. Poros actually consists of two islands, Sferia and Kalavria, which is connected via a bridge across a very small canal. When stopping on Poros you can see the Zoodchos Pigi Monastery, which is built around a spring said to have healing powers. You can also see the first navy base in all of Greece, built in 1830. You can’t miss the historic belfry from anywhere on the island as it stands on top of the highest point of the island.

Sejlerferie ved græske Poros

 

Aegina

Just a short distance (around 27 km) from Athens you will find the island of Aegina. Named after a nymph from Greek mythology who had an affair with Zeus, the king of the Greek gods, this island is mainly made up by an extinct volcano. The volcano has provided fertile land for the island, which is known for its delicious green pistachios. You’ll also find a lot of history here, e.g. the old ruins of a Temple of Aphaia.

Aegina Havn

 

Santorini – Oia

Santorini was once a round island by the name of Strongili (which means The Round Island). But a huge volcanic eruption around 1600 BC blew up a large part of the island, which then sank into the ocean. The result can be seen today, where modern day Santorini is shaped like a horseshoe around the crater, also called a caldera. Here you can see volcanic beaches with burning hot black sand, the iconic blue and white houses that glitters in the sun and nice bays with impressive views of the caldera where later eruptions have created new islands. It is said that the Greek myth of Atlantis is tied to Santorini and the large volcanic eruption, which also destroyed the Minoan culture on Crete more than a 100 km away.

Hvide huse på Santorini Oia

 

Naxos

Little white chapels stand on top of many inaccessible mountain tops on the island of Naxos. In the town of Naxos, you’ll find a beautiful harbour with tavernas, bars and restaurants that can satisfy any sailor. High above the city you’ll see a Venetian fortress and a catholic cathedral watching over it all. When travelling on or around the island, you’ll get plenty of views of expansive fields with crops like wine, olive or cereal. With the fertile lands mentioned it is perhaps not so shocking that you can find ruins from temples of the Greek gods Dionysus (the god of wine) and Demeter (the goddess of cereal) on Naxos.

Naxos by

 

Mykonos

If you like to party, Mykonos is the island for you. Here you’ll find a host of nightclubs and bars that really know how to party all night long. If you’d rather explore than party till the break of dawn, then Mykonos also offers a range of beautiful landmarks worth visiting. I the main town of Mykonos you can see the iconic Venetian windmills from the 16th century. And in the district of Alefkandra you can almost feel the vibe of Venice as the houses here are built all the way to the Aegean Sea.

Historiske vindmøller på Mykonos

 

Skopelos

If you have seen the Mamma Mia movie, then you already know Skopelos. The movie was shot around the island and with the old monastery playing a huge part. The beautiful beaches and bays with crystal clear waters are a paradise for those on a boating holiday. It is easy to fly to the island’s western neighbour, the island of Skhiatos, where the bases are located, and which is also definitely worth a visit. Actually, you can do three islands in a row here as Skopelos’ eastern neighbour, Alonissos, is also very interesting and known for its very high level of gastronomy.

Kirke på bakketop på Skopelos

 

Kos

Close to Turkey you’ll find the Dodecanese Islands, which includes the second largest island, Rhodes. However, we have chosen to focus on the birthplace of Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, who was born on the island of Kos. A small green-clad mountain range runs along the southern coast of the island and provides an incredible panorama when sailing by. On Kos you can see remains of many former cultures, from the ancient Greek and the Romans to the Knights Hospitaller and the Ottoman empire. In the town of Kos, modern day homes and hotels are built side by side with archaeological sites and excavations. And above the harbour the impressive fortress of the Knights Hospitaller watches over the island. Kos has a reputation for being a party island, but there are plenty of other reasons to explore the narrow streets of the villages here.

Lækker lagune ved græske Kos

 

Lefkas

So far, all the islands we have highlighted has been located east of the Peloponnese peninsula, but you can also find many beautiful islands on the western side of the Greek mainland. Among them is Lefkas, which used to be connected to the mainland. But even centuries BC the Corinthians saw a strategic advantage in having a canal between the Ionian Sea and the calm waters east of Lefkas. The name Lefkas means ‘white’, as the island is named after the beautiful white cliffs that rises from the waters on the west coast of Lefkas.

Lefkas smukke hvide klipper

 

Kefalonia

Back in 1953 a huge earthquake destroyed large parts of the area, but the picturesque seaport of Fiscardo on the northern coast of Kefalonia miraculously escaped without much damage from the mighty forces of the earthquake. From the town’s two characteristic lighthouses you’ll have an amazing view of the neighbouring island of Ithaka where Homer’s mythical hero Odysseus reigned as king. Kefalonia is also an amazing destination for divers. It is said to be among the best in all of Europe. Here you can dive in caves or at beautiful reeves full of life.

Havnebyen Fiscardo på Kefalonia


 

You can visit many other great islands on a boating holiday in Greece. Hit us back with your favourites and why you would put them on the list.