Fancy galloping through the waves on a horse, snorkelling through clear waters or trekking up a mountain for four hours? Hydra, about two hours’ journey from Greece’s capital, Athens, is your island. Here’s our pick of things to do on Hydra.
Hydra is just a two-hour ferry ride from Greece’s capital Athens and while it’s popular, you’ll find it a lot more serene than the mainland city. Cars are banned on this Greek island and instead, walkers, boats and even donkeys rein supreme. Narrow alleyways and stone mansions lend the place an old-world feel, which is on full display at Hydra’s variety of museums: the Byzantine Museum, the Historical Archive Museum and the National Historical Museum, to name a few. And, of course, the beaches are as gorgeous as any Greek hotspot.
Bisti Beach is on the far side of the island, almost 10km (6mi) from the main town. It’s accessible by water taxi, which runs on a set schedule, or you can catch the put-put from in front of the clock tower. The shoreline, which gently slopes into shallow water, makes this beach a great choice for families with kids – and as an added bonus, it’s well-known for its snorkelling.
Mount Eros is on the way to the Prophet Elias Monastery, so you can easily package them into one trip. The 20km (12mi) hike from the Hydra city centre will take about four hours – set out earlier rather than later in the day to avoid Greece’s most oppressive afternoon heat. Take the path to the monastery until you spot the sign and don’t forget to pause and enjoy the view, including of the wildflowers, along the way.