What is your favorite Greek Island?

Reply

Oct 12th, 2017, 07:47 AM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,344
What is your favorite Greek Island?

What is your favorite Greek Island - other than Santorini, Naxos, Paros or Crete. Those four account for probably 90% of the discussion on this forum - and they are all great - and I have been to all of them. Now I'm looking for some other islands and opinions. Thanks
isabel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 12th, 2017, 08:00 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 221
Skiathos
enewell is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 12th, 2017, 09:40 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,473
We love Folegandros.
Judy is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 12th, 2017, 10:31 AM
  #4
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 38
I've been to Rhodes seven times. Love it. Corfu is also great.
cherie2125 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 12th, 2017, 02:49 PM
  #5
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,344
enewell - I'll check Skiathos out

judy - Folegandros was on my radar so glad to hear you liked it. How many days do you advise to spend there? Also, did you combine it with other islands and if so which?

cherie - so glad to hear you like Rhodes as that is actually the focus of the trip I'm planning (for next summer). I have about two weeks total and am not sure how long to spend there, and then where else to go. Did you get to Chalki or Symi or Kos. Any other suggestions?
isabel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 12th, 2017, 04:14 PM
  #6
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 3,710
Isabel, there are some islands that are cited VERY often by people from UK -- Corfu, Skiathos, Lindos on Rhodes, Certain places on Crete -- but when you look at comments closer, they often refer to "resorts." That's because Brits & Irish often go for package holidays, which go to purpose-built concrete block "resorts" that provide the most holiday bang for the buck. However, if you are an independent traveler, I would investigate closely before deciding.

I've been to 25+ Islands so far (not done yet!), some of them many many times, and do admit Naxos is my favorite. However, I've enjoyed stays and some returns to smaller less-visited islands. Depends on what you want -- a stay of 1 week or longer.. or 3 days & move on? A place u can explore without a car, or one where you're willing to rent a car at least 1-2 days? Here are some observations --

In the short stay/move on category --
FOLEGANDROS - Absolutely GORGEOUS high town, Chora, stunning, that's where you stay & where any activity is. Elsewhere, bus service minimal,
beaches mediocre.
SERIFOS - 3 days is great, SO restful, seems like longer... especially just off season (late may-early june) - Port town beach is n.g., but just over the hill, Livadakia Beach is Heaven. only 2 lodgings right ON the beach, tree-shaded, serene in Early june. Isle's only main "sight" is high-town Chora; bus up, hike down.. then go lie on beach again!
AMORGOS -- again 3-4 days seems like more, so restful, in May-June or September. of 2 ports, Katapola is not appealing, Aegali much nicer, w great small beaches, hill villages above to hike to. Another gorgeous hi town, Chora, (mainly empty). Lots of hikes, Bus service minimal
MILOS - Fascinating and good for more than 3 days IF you have a car at least 1 day, busses scanty. It has ruins, catacombs, amazing volcanic ruins, 22 beaches (the MOST of any isle that size!) - a sailing trip half-round the rim of island a great experience. Hi town PLAKA is a dream place.

LONGER STAYS ..
SAMOS -- An amazing island, very overlooked by most tourists (aside from 2-3 UK "holiday hives" u can avoid. A great "Springboard" for day-trips to Ephesus, Patmos,and overnight visits to Halki and Chios ... SAMOS itself has a port town Vathy, with the BEST Museum in Eastern Aegean (Biggest Kouros in the WORLD), and hidden serene "hillside town" of Ano Vathy a view like Italian lakes. There used to be a round-the-isle public bus for a look-see ... and a 1-2 day car rental can get you to mountainous landscapes in west, and villages that time forgot.

SIFNOS - IMHO, the most beautiful Cycladic isle of all.. the white "cube" houses crown its hills like necklaces. Island is a hiker's heaven, flagstoned walks link all the villages (there wre NO roads even, until after WW II). My choice is to stay in Hill town, looking down ovr valley & out to sea... excellent bus network to take you to any of 3-4 wonderful beaches. Interesting history of arts, cookery, more. No airport, no daily ferry from Piraeus, and NO package tourism. If you come during week of island's biggest celebration, there's an all-night festival at the famous church on a point.. with eating, drinking, music, dancing, parading around.

RHODES - Alas this isle has daily cruise crowds... but they can be avoided. Rhodes Old Town has some wonderful small pensions to stay in, down lanes 800 years old, right next to famous High Medieveal walls. You can easily spend 2 days enjoying Rhodes Old Town (walk the wall!) and Lindos, then a car rental for 2 days would enable you to leave all crowds behind and see the "hidden" western side of Isle.. castle ruins, quiet coves etc.

NOT AN ISLAND, BUT ... Have you ever looked at the Western side of the Peloponnese - Pylos & points North. Pylos a small Beautiful town (laid out by the FRench) w. sea-view portside park ... 10 miles north at tiny shore village, Gialova (only "5 blocks long"... 3 hotels, 10 tavernas) .. Hotel Zoe is my secret eden. THE best beach ever.... miles long, no development (yet). http://www.zoeresort.com/the-area.html A few miles away, Navarino Bay, a lagoon & Nature Preserve, castle ruins, Nestor's Palace, Voidokilia Beach, semi-circle, heritage-protected famed "calendar shot"

... OK, that's a start. All "travelerjan-tested" and I'd go back gladly to any one of them in a minute!
travelerjan is online now  
Reply With Quote
Oct 12th, 2017, 05:35 PM
  #7
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,322
So interesting, travelerjan! Pylos has been on our radar for a few years, and we plan to go there summer after next for an extended stay. Hotel Zoe looks lovely!
Weadles is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 12th, 2017, 07:16 PM
  #8
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,090
Skiathos is a lovely island which started my love affair with Greece. It’s not full of purpose-built resorts, which anyone who has actually been there will know. Skiathos has fantastic beaches, and the island Is so lovely a former president of Greece had a villa there. You can easily take day trips to nearby Skopelos and Alonissos from Skiathos. When I was there, travel agents were even offering day trips to Delphi and Meteora. I took the day trip to Delphi, but now regret passing up Meteora.
Heimdall is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 13th, 2017, 12:12 AM
  #9
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5,399
Astypalea, Anafi, Symi, Gavdos, Iraklia, Leros
neckervd is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 13th, 2017, 12:34 AM
  #10
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,473
We've stayed on Folegandros twice, 3 days each. It really is small.....sort of a chill out spot between larger islands. We combined it with Paros (another we love!) and Milos
Judy is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 13th, 2017, 06:40 AM
  #11
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 3,710
Weadles, if you DO visit Hotel Zoe, do tell the family that you came on the recommend of Travelerjan from Philadelphia! BTW, despite fact that someone persuaded them to change their website title to "Zoe Resort," do not panic. It's still a wonderful family-run (3 generations) hotel... the desk is now managed by Zoe herself, age about 30, college-educated lovely fluent in 3-4 languages (when she was a baby, her grandad started the place & named it after her -- as many don't realize, Zoe is not a "fad" name in Greece, but an ancient Greek name, meaning "life").

Hotel Zoe has TWO buildings... separated by a pool - the inland one has more apartments. DO request front building, a room with canopied balcony overlooking the palm trees grove & beach. There are gravelled paths among the pines, and tables, and hanging lanterns at night ... bliss!. As for that beach(Aqua water!!) ... i have walked north for 2+ miles... only development (so far!) is a campground, set back & not obtrusive. Next to Zoe's is a long pier, unused (a few luxury yachts sometimes anchor way out, but come in on tiny boats). At about 5-6 pm in May-June cars drive up, Greek daddies after work, bringing kids for a plunge before dinner, there's a joyful time of splashing and cries of "Papa, look Papa!". Great fun for us grands, sitting in our comfy shady basket chairs... a little bonus of family fun.
travelerjan is online now  
Reply With Quote
Oct 13th, 2017, 07:57 AM
  #12
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 173
Many islands are worthy of a visit. When you go can make a big difference on what to expect and how much you'll enjoy yourself. High Season will find many of the "Big Name" islands over crowded, over touristy, expensive and usually a lot hotter. Off season will find even the Big Name Islands more tolerable with much milder temperatures.

We go off-season, October and find most islands and the mainland with less tourists, lower prices and still lovely weather, warm enough for a dip in the Aegean.

Having said that some of our favorite islands are:

Astypalea/Amorgos is a great combination
Sifnos (Classic Cyclades Island)
Tinos (a hidden gem)
Milos (unique geological formations and beautiful beaches)
Naxos (a favorite)
Chios (one of the most beautiful landscape wise in all of Greece with some of the best one of a kind sites/villages to visit)
Crete (something for everyone)

Don't overlook the Peloponesse with Nafplio being one of Greece's most loveliest towns and a wonderful place to base yourself for exploring the Argolis area with some of Greece's best archeological sites nearby.

The Mani Peninsula is off the beaten track and worthy of many days of exploration.

That's just a small sample . . . Greece is truly a lovely country to visit with more to see and experience than many other countries can offer.
crazyh is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 14th, 2017, 05:01 PM
  #13
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 3,433
We too absolutely loved the Pylos and Gialova area!
TexasAggie is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 15th, 2017, 03:37 PM
  #14
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,344
Thanks for all the replies.

The reason I asked the question is that I am planning a trip to Rhodes for next summer (yes, unfortunately it will be in July) and am trying to figure out what to combine it with. Originally planned on sticking to the Dordecanese but my research kept bringing up "package tours crowded", "nuisance to get to", "not especially interesting". I really want to see Rhodes but was getting discouraged by the rest so thinking I might combine it with some other island group, but, as I thought, that's really hard to do. Especially since I don't want to go to Athens this trip. Anyway, I think I'm going to shorten the time I want to be there (originally 2 to 2 and a half weeks) and just do Rhodes (day trip to Symi and maybe Chalki) and Kos for a total of 10 days.

Those of you who mentioned Rhodes - how long do you suggest and did you do any day trips to other islands? Same question for anyone who has been to Kos.

Thanks
isabel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 17th, 2017, 08:51 AM
  #15
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5,399
There are some package tours crowded areas in Rhodes Island (by far not the best one's) and a lot of others. There are always many poeple in the walled city of Rhodos and in medieaval Lindos.
Other places like the famous sandy beaches of Tsambika, Agathi, Stegna are never crowded (some beaches between them, with neither cairs/umbrellas nor beach bars are rather deserted).
There is no package tourism at Chalki, Nyssiros, Tilos or Symi. The last 2 have good sandy beaches and good walking trails too; they deserve more than just a day trip.
The daily Patmos bound catamarans usually stop at Symi (see above), Kos (mass tourism and not my favourite anyway), Kalymnos (some package tourism at one village only), Leros (many beaches, many small pensions, favoured by Greek tourists), Lipsi (tiny pensions and only 2 good beaches).
Astypalea, a gem among the Ilsands in the area, can usually be reached oince weekly by direct ferry and twise weekly via Kalymnos (you would have to sleep at Pothia, capital of Kalymnos).
neckervd is offline  
Reply With Quote
Oct 17th, 2017, 10:47 AM
  #16
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 6,673
My favorite is the one I'm on at the time!
brotherleelove2004 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 29th, 2017, 07:04 AM
  #17
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 3
Hm... tough question since you've taken out the obvious answers lol! This summer I went Greek Island Hopping and managed to see the most famous of the Cyclades with the Greek Island Pass. If I had to pick two, I'd say Milos and Amorgos! Milos is mostly for couples, has some pretty amazing beaches. If I am not mistaken more than 70, so you'll need plenty of time to spent there if you are willing to see every last one of them! Amorgos on the other hand has all kinds of alternative travellers. In Amorgos you can find two camping sites as well if you are looking for budget accommodation. I feel it was a privilege that I got to visit an incredible island and got to hang out with such joyous and helpful locals! Truly incredible! I hope I get the chance to visit it soon. ( www.hsotelbay.com/ferries )
mikeyobay is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 29th, 2017, 07:05 AM
  #18
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 3
Hm... tough question since you've taken out the obvious answers lol! This summer I went Greek Island Hopping and managed to see the most famous of the Cyclades with the Greek Island Pass. If I had to pick two, I'd say Milos and Amorgos! Milos is mostly for couples, has some pretty amazing beaches. If I am not mistaken more than 70, so you'll need plenty of time to spent there if you are willing to see every last one of them! Amorgos on the other hand has all kinds of alternative travellers. In Amorgos you can find two camping sites as well if you are looking for budget accommodation. I feel it was a privilege that I got to visit an incredible island and got to hang out with such joyous and helpful locals! Truly incredible! I hope I get the chance to visit it soon.
mikeyobay is offline  
Reply With Quote
Nov 30th, 2017, 06:05 PM
  #19
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 12,669
If you do travel to Rhodes, you should visit Kos, home of Hipocrates’ school.
HappyTrvlr is offline  
Reply With Quote
Dec 1st, 2017, 09:10 AM
  #20
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 283
I only know the Cyclades and Hydra.

Koufonisia, a little cyclade, stands out. I never have so many amazing shades of blue. The water is spectacular. The natural pools and caves are fun to explore. The port is picturesque with paths dotted with windmills. You can explore the island on foot or by bicycle.
ToujoursVoyager is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 03:31 PM.