5 favorite Greek islands for summer vacation

Although summer is long overdue, and with it the thoughts and attitudes of vacation and the sea, there may still be undecided where to go in a month or two. Here are our top 5 Greek islands with a typical atmosphere, conducive to the beach and swimming during the day, and in the warm evenings – to drink ouzo in the aroma of cooked seafood.

Crete is the southernmost of all the islands of Greece and perhaps endowed with the most significant historical heritage, that of the Minoan civilization – the first European civilization. The palace of King Minos and everything related to the ancient Greek legends about the labyrinth of the Minotaur is located in Crete – in Knossos, near Heraklion, the capital of the island.

Balos beach lagoon on the island of Crete

Balos beach lagoon on the island of Crete

Balos beach lagoon on the island of Crete

The island is the largest in all of Greece, the coastline is huge and the choice of villages and beaches for summer vacation is extremely large. Heraklion, Chania (Chania), Rethymno, Hersonissos and Agia Nikolaos – all along the northern coast, are among the largest settlements and resorts. If you decide to travel by ferry, these are the main ports, and the flights most often land at the airport in Heraklion (there are also airports for international flights in Chania and Sitia).

Santorini Island
The most popular of the Cycladic islands and the most visited by cruise ships due to the depth of its coastal waters, Santorini is infinitely picturesque, sunny and romantic. Its volcanic origins color the sand on its beaches in a dark, almost black color. And the steep cliffs with white houses, the blue domes of the churches and the windmills are most characteristic of the landscapes of this Aegean island. Its main city (port and airport) is Fira, and in the town of Oia in the north crowds of people gather every day to watch the most beautiful sunset in the whole Cyclades.

Famous windmills are everywhere in SantoriniFamous windmills are everywhere in Santorini

Famous windmills are everywhere in Santorini

What to see and what to do in Santorini, which are the best beaches and places, you can read more in our travelogue about the island here

The island of Kos
Kos is part of the group of 12 islands, the Dodecanese or also called the Southern Sporades and is very close to the coast of the Turkish resort of Bodrum. It is most convenient to reach it from Bulgaria by the ferry Bodrum – Kos, which covers a distance of no more than 20 km between them. The larger settlements on the island are the eponymous town of Kos, Kardamena, Kefalos, Tigaki, Mastichari. Kos is proud of the marina, opened near the old port in 2001, which is considered the center of yacht cruise tourism in the Aegean Sea. The history of the island is connected with the father of medicine, Hippocrates, who lived there in the distant 5th century BC. As in many places in Greece, Kos is full of archeological finds, monuments and settlements.

island of Kos Greeceisland of Kos Greece

Tavern in Kardamena, island of Kos

Rhodes Island
Rhodes is another island of the Dodecanese group, in fact the largest of them and also easily accessible from the Turkish coast, but from Marmaris. Home to the now extinct Colossus of Rhodes, one of the 7 wonders of the world in the past, Rhodes offers many opportunities to combine a beach holiday with cultural tourism, especially for lovers of ancient Greek civilization. The medieval city of the capital Rhodes is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and Lindos and Ialyssos are home to much of Rhodes’ most valuable archaeological heritage, such as the Acropolis of Lindos, the ruins of the Temple of Zeus and the Byzantine fortress of Ialyssos. Beaches and resorts are also abundant, the most developed in this regard is the northeastern part of the island, around the towns of Faliraki, Kalifeya, Afandu, Kolimbia, Lindos and others.

The Temple of Athens in Lindos, Rhodes IslandThe Temple of Athens in Lindos, Rhodes Island

The Temple of Athens in Lindos, Rhodes Island

Mykonos Island
We have reached the Cycladic Islands again, but they really have an irresistible charm. Mykonos is traditionally known as a relatively more expensive and luxurious destination with interesting nightlife, and the views from the port in the capital – also Mykonos (Chora) and a number of fishermen’s houses called Little Venice, are well known and sealed by photographers in thousands of versions. evening, morning, bright day, etc. light.

White houses with blooming bougainvillea everywhere in MykonosWhite houses with blooming bougainvillea everywhere in Mykonos

White houses with blooming bougainvillea everywhere in Mykonos

Mykonos is also a frequent stop for cruise ships, whose curious passengers pass in crowds through the narrow streets for a few hours and during these hours it is better to be on the beach and leave the walks on the cobbled streets until late in the evening. the islands are Elia, Plati Yalos, Kalo Livadi, Megali Amos – near the city of Mykonos, Agios Ioannis and others. The landscape of Mykonos is quite similar to that of Santorini – windmills, blue roofs of churches, white houses and the same incredibly flowering bougainvillea, with the difference that there are no high sheer cliffs, so typical of Santorini.

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