One of the most photographed islands on the ‘gram, Santorini, with its beautiful caldera, its whitewashed villages and breathtaking beaches of black sand and its charming atmosphere, is simply a magnificent destination in Greece. The western coast allows for fantastic views of the sea dotted with tiny islets of melted lava, which attracts thousands of people every day. The eastern coast, with its humble villages, tranquil beaches, and laid-back vibes, will seduce those looking for quieter corners. But don’t forget to sample some of the locally produced wines and the traditional local cuisine.
The island of Chios is mostly known for its famous mastic-producing trees, but it also features a hidden treasure in the village of Pyrgi, a 25-kilometer (15.5-mile) drive from the main town. The geometrical hand-painted designs, known as “xysta,” that adorn the façades of the buildings add a strong architectural interest to this medieval village. Fair warning: a stroll around the main area will leave you with a wide selection of pictures to choose from for your next post on Instagram.
The Lady of the North boasts a few fascinating districts, but one favorite is Ladadika, a pedestrianized area filled with bars, traditional tavernas, and coffee shops. A former oil-producing area, Ladadika boasts a vibrant atmosphere and is an ideal place to grab a bite while sitting outside enjoying the scenery. The colorful traditional buildings make a perfect backdrop for some lovely pictures.
The largest of the Dodecanese islands, Rhodes is pretty much picture-perfect. But its Old Town, a UNESCO-listed district, is the place that will leave you in awe. This medieval city features buildings from the Hellenistic, Ottoman, Byzantine and Italian periods, including the well-preserved Palace of the Grand Master. The Archaeological Museum of Rhodes is housed in the 15th-century Hospital of the Knights, which is equally fascinating and breathtaking.
If the white buildings of the Cyclades don’t impress you, you might want to head straight to Symi instead. This picturesque little island may not be the most famous destination in Greece, but it features hidden treasures such as quaint monasteries, neoclassical mansions, and scenic, colorful harbors lined with yachts. Furthermore, thanks to its small size, the whole of the island can be best explored by foot, which will allow you to roam around the pine-clad valleys and hills overlooking the deep blue sea.
On the Ionian Sea, the island of Lefkada, or Lefkas, is a great alternative destination for those who prefer islands without many touristic complexes. The area features high, steep cliffs bordering white sand beaches and is also an ideal watersports destination, thanks to the thermal winds that sweep the island. If you are looking for active holidays, then you know where to go.
Another jewel in the Ionian Sea, Corfu, also known as Kerkyra, is a fantastic island destination to discover, complete with a rich history, gorgeous beaches, and beautiful nature. While there are plenty of picture-perfect spots on the island, our top pick is Corfu’s Old Town, with its Venetian architecture, large squares and narrow streets bordered by cafés, restaurants, and boutiques. A favorite spot for summer vacation, the island is also lovely in the spring, when the inland area is brimming with blooming flowers. Also, the tourists are scarce during this time of year, and Easter in Corfu is a must.