Ios is an ideal summer holiday destination for all age groups. It is well known for its night life, but it has also another personality, extremely charming. The village of the island with the traditional Cycladic houses and the small streets, by the first glance tells the visitor the history of the place and its persons.
It allocates beaches of unique beauty, golden and sandy, with crystal waters. Some of these beaches are between “The 10 best beaches in Europe”.
For more information, visit the website of the Municipality of Ios http://ios.gr/.
Start exploring the port of Ios, with the picturesque church of Agia Irini, of 17th century. Visit Ios village, “Chora”, built on the slope, just 2 kilometers walking distance from the port. Walk through the narrow cobblestone streets and reach the church “Panagia Gremiotissa”, the “Lady of the Cliffs”, to enjoy the magnificent sunset view.
If you are lucky, on a clear day, you can see all nearby islands and so far as the mountains of Crete. Get to know the archaeological museum and learn the long history of the island, starting from the third millennium B.C. till the Roman era. Don’t forget to visit the area of the windmills, located on the slope just after “Chora”, to discover the traditional architecture.
Continue your tour with “Skarkos”, the prehistoric settlement of the island, one of the most important excavations of the middle of the third millennium B.C, located at Kampos area.
Visit “Paleokastro”, the ruins of an old castle, located in Psathi area and the ancient tomb which claims the burial of the great poet Homer, located in Plakotos area and enjoy the unique view of the nearby islands.
During your tour you will see many small semi – private churches, they are estimated to be three hundred sixty five. Many of them, dated from the byzantine years, have been characterized as historical monuments.
Ios has 32 beautiful beaches, all with golden sand. Among the most famous beaches of the island are Mylopotas, with its crystal blue waters and Manganari, with its five beautiful bays – beaches.
Many other beaches of astonishing beauty wait for you to explore them, such as Gialos, Koumbara, Kolitsani, Agia Theodoti, Psathi, Kalamos, Plakes etc.
The cultural events of the island take place in the stone build theatre of Odysseus Elytis, with an amazing view in Mylopotas. The municipality organizes various cultural events, such as theatrical performances and concerts.
One other unique occasion of direct contact with the locals and their traditions are the religious festivals, where you can eat for free and enjoy greek music and dancing.
If you have an interest to know the local society and the Cycladic nature you should get to know the production of honey made of thyme of amazing quality (in the summer), the gathering of olives (in the fall) and you can visit the cheese factory of the island.
You should try the local traditional products, such as the delicious thyme honey, the local cheeses (kefalotiri, skotiri, graviera, xino, mizithra), the local sweets (pastel, kaltzounia, amigdalota) and appetizers (revithokeftedes, tomatokeftedes and tsimetia – filled zucchini’s flowers).
If you are interested in hiking, the roaming in the donkey path of Ios offers you unique experiences and scenes of the past. Many old paths are preserved. In the most organized beaches, of Gialos, Mylopotas, Manganari, you have water sports facilities.
For those who want to experience the marine wealth of the island, there is a diving school in Mylopotas. If you want to explore the smallest beaches of the island you can rent a boat or sailing boat.