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 Anafi  love this island
 Antiparos  love this island
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 Iraklia  love this islandlove this island
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 Milos  love this islandlove this islandlove this island
 Naxos  love this islandlove this island
 Paros  love this island
 Polyaigos  love this island
 Rhinia / Rinia
 Santorini  love this island
 Schinoussa  love this islandlove this island
 Syros  love this island
 Thirassia  love this island
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 Crete & around
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 Chrissi Island
 CRETE  love this islandlove this islandlove this island
 Elafonisi (Crete)
 Gavdos  love this island
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 Patmos  love this islandlove this island
 Symi  love this island
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 Agios Efstratios
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 Samos  love this islandlove this island
 Thassos  love this island
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Do you have secret places that you keep to yourself? I can't decide where to go to.

People.....everything that I know and where I have been I write down on my site. I do not have any special tips or places that I keep to myself, so if you cannot find what you are looking for here on my site than I don't know where to send you. I am not withholding any secret information for special people. Also I write it like I see it: if I liked a place I will say so and if I hated a place I will also say so, including the restaurants where I have been. You might disagree but that doesn't change my personal experience.

Also I cannot tell you which island you should go to or which islands you should combine: you can look at the information that I give and you have to make up your own mind. Everybody likes different things. Don't make a "list of requirements" and than ask me where to go to. A guideline can be the "hearts" I put behind an island on the main page, but this is purely personal. This website is all about my own experiences and impressions. You may think differently and love an island that I wouldn't want to visit anymore. We are not all the same.

Sorry, I don't do house visits or telephone calls. I am not a travel agent.

For the people that are going to Crete and are staying in this or that village, please click on the links of the villages and the beaches to see what it is, if it is something you might like and if it's near where you are staying. Unfortunately I don't have the time to make a program for you if you go to Crete for a couple of weeks. Find the places you think you might like and visit those.

Do you have any suggestions for islandhopping?

I have so many, but I will give you a few that are not to difficult, there are plenty more options:
Crete: always good, watch out where you go though, look on my Crete page (a few suggestions on the front page but plenty more options). You can spend your whole holiday here and look around but if you insist to visit another island Gavdos or Santorini are the easiest.
Combine Samos with one or two other friendly islands like Patmos and Leros (south) or Ikaria and Fourni (southwest).
If you fly to Athens: from the harbour of Rafina make a combination, for instance Andros, Tinos, Mykonos, Syros.
From Mykonos plenty of options: Andros, Tinos, Syros, Paros, Antiparos, Naxos, Santorini.
From Santorini: Paros, Naxos, Mykonos, Ios, or (we are going to do this in 2011) Santorini, Milos, Kimolos, Folegandros.

If you want to go island hopping in the Cyclades or the Dodecanese find your own combination. I can not decide for you which islands you have to visit. Each island described on my site contains information and on that basis you can decide if you like it or not. Please don't ask me what shouldn't be missed if you are there. For this purpose I put tips in the various islands.

If you go to a village on a large island on for instance Crete, find out yourself what you can do and have a look at in the area once you are there. All the pages of the villages and beaches on Crete have a map on which you can see if it is near the village where you are staying. You can than judge by the photos and description whether it is for you or not. Unfortunately I don't have the time for everyone that writes to give a personal answer ;).

The ferries from Piraeus and in between the Greek islands.


Many people ask me about connections and times of the ferries in Greece, but people....I don't know it all. You can check these things on the internet. Often the schedules are not ready yet or they haven't been approved yet, and this way you will still know nothing at all. If you book a hotel on one of the islands usually the owner of the hotel will know the times of the boats and where they come from and go to on what days, how long it takes etcetera.

Many people fly to Athens and get the boat there to the destination island sailing from Piraeus. As for myself I always go to the other harbour of Athens, called Rafina. This harbour is close to the airport and you don't have to drive all through Athens to get there. There are regular busses from the airport to Rafina and if you take a taxi this is not so expensive. The only disadvantage of Rafina is that there are only boats in the morning and in the late afternoon, and they only go to Andros, Tinos and Mykonos, and occasionally to Evia and Paros. From Tinos or Mykonos you can travel to a lot of other islands like for instance Syros, Paros and Naxos. For me this is better than the chaos in Piraeus. By the way: Rafina is a cozy small coastal settlement and it is absolutely no punishment if you have to spend the night there. There are good restaurants in the harbour and there is a beach, so you can make a short stop and be on your way the next morning. There are highspeed boats (the fast ones) and normal ferries.

I prefer the normal ferries, not just because they cost only half of the ticket that you pay for the fast ones, but also because the highspeeds are smaller, have little fresh air and they make you throw up when the sea is rough. On the normal boats you can go and sit on the deck and see the islands go by: much nicer. Some tickets (Crete / Italy - Corfu for instance you can book ahead if you want at the website of Greek Ferries.

Is it going to rain in the period that I visit, what is the temperature?

You can find special sites that give you schedules about the average temperatures and rainfall in Greece. Please don't ask me if it is going to rain in the period when you are there. If I knew I would plan my own holidays in such a way that I would have blue skies every day, but unfortunately I have also seen the occasional rainy or cloudy day when I was in Greece.

What are the best periods to visit the Greek islands?

During the holiday season in July and August it can get very very busy (and hot ....) in Greece. I would recommend if possible, to travel in May, June, September or October, so outside the busy season. In July and August it is not only much busier and more difficult to find a nice accommodation, but it is also more expensive. In this period it is wise to book a holiday or a hotel before you leave. In May and June the islands of Greece are much greener and full of flowers. The temperature of the seawater is a bit colder, but you can still swim in it ;). Just jump right into it and don't try out the temperature with your big toe. In September and October the islands are more dry and less green than in the beginning of the season, but the water temperatures of the sea are better. Outside the tourist season (November - April) you can expect all kinds of weather, from thunderstorms, wind and even snow to lovely sunny days on which everybody rushes to the beach for a bbq and a dip in the water.

I recommend everyone to rent a car when you arrive on a Greek island, otherwise you miss the most beautiful places. Especially on the large islands of Greece such as Crete or Lesbos you can not do without a car because there is so much to see. At the top of the page is a button for car hire at various islands. These are my regular suppliers of good cars. In your car you have the freedom and you can visit the most beautiful beaches and places.

What are your favorite beaches?? My top 13

Just because everybody keeps asking... Please note I have only seen about 40 of the islands and not all!! So this is just a selection of beaches that I really enjoyed. Most of them will be quiet, even deserted and on most of them naturism is possible. Please check on the website if you want to know more. These are just a few of the beaches that came up in my head first, but as you will understand there are more that I really liked.

1) Despotico island beaches (Despotico is a deserted island) and Polyaigos beaches (also a deserted island)
2) The naturist beaches around Tris Ekklisies (Crete)
3) Naturist beach of Tertsa (Crete)
4) Tsoutsouros beach (Crete)
5) The naturist beach of Achivodolimno (Milos)
6) The (partly) naturist beach of Lagada (Crete)
7) Rodakino (naturist) Beaches (Crete)
8) Fyriplaka Beach (Milos)
9) Koumeika Beach (Samos)
10) Agios Pavlos Beach (Crete)
11) Ellinika Beach (Kimolos)
13) Xerokampos Beach (Crete)
13) Ilingas Beach (Crete) and Kalo Nero Beach (Crete)
Very nice are also several beaches on the island of Naxos.

What are your favorite islands?? My top 15

1) Crete....come on, nothing beats it: beautiful, diverse and so much to see.
2) Milos: super-friendly people, awesome beaches, magical landscape, great food, unrivalled coastline, sights...
3) Despotico: deserted island that can be reached from Antiparos, empty beaches and a historical site.
3) Polyaigos shares place 3, also deserted, blue waters, empty white beaches, extremely pretty.
4) Iraklia in the Small Cyclades group, peaceful and such friendly inhabitants
5) Alonissos and Skyros, two still reasonably quiet and authentic islands in the Sporades island group, with nice beaches and friendly people.
6) Thirassia: go back in time on this island, good for walks, with a large quiet pebble beach and pretty churches.
7) Schinoussa, one of the small Cycades islands, pretty quiet en plenty of beaches
8) Naxos, reasonably large island with pretty and sandy beaches
9) Anafi: quiet, nice sandy beaches, naturism
10) Gavdos, small island south of Crete with lots of pretty and sandy beaches, naturism
11) Samos: quite a large island with a good variety in beaches and many historic sites.
12) Santorini: sites, views, pretty villages and if you rent a car plenty of quiet beaches,
13) Antiparos: friendly people, plenty of beaches, beautiful cave, your boat to Despotico island.
14) Patmos: friendly people, the monastery, good for walks, pleasant small beaches.
15) Paros: friendly people, some rather nice beaches and historical sites.

What are the most interesting / picturesque towns and villages? My top 10

1) Corfu Town (Corfu or Kerkyra island)
2) Chania (Crete)
3) Rhodos Town (Rhodos island)
4) Ermoupolis (Syros, Cyclades)
5) Skopelos Town (Skopelos, Sporades)
6) Mykonos Town (Mykonos, Cyclades)
7) Symi Town (Symi, Dodecanese)
8) Antiparos Town (Antiparos, Cyclades)
9) Folegandros Chora (Folegandros, Cyclades)
10) Oia (Santorini, Cyclades)

Why go islandhopping and what not to do?

I like islandhopping in Greece so much because the Greek islands are all so different and because it's so easy to hop on a ferry when you think you are finished with one. When I travel I only take about 5 or 6 kilos of handluggage with me and no suitcase. This way it is easy to visit diferent places without having to carry so much stuff and you are very mobile. You just go to the next island. I've created this page because I'm Greek-island-crazy and I'm always browsing the internet going from one page to another in my 'favourites'. This way I have all these websites on one page, including the maps of the Greek islands and the Greek ferryschedules. My favourite islands are Milos, Despotico, Polyaigos, Thirassia, Mykonos, Tinos, Antiparos, Anafi, Patmos, Paros, Samos, Patmos and Crete, or maybe an island that I haven't seen yet.

When you decide to go island hopping than it is wise to stick to one island group, and not for instance go from the Cycladic islands to the Dodecanese islands or a combination like this. The distances are sometimes quite far and before you know it all you will be doing is travelling on a ferry boat. Within one island group the connections are also more frequent and so it will be easier to go back to the place where you started and where you probably have to leave for home again. Only if you have a lot of time than off course you can go anywhere you want to.

For the people that are looking for a quiet spot I recommend in the first place to travel outside the high season, but if that is not possible than there are a couple of islands and places on islands that are relatively quiet. Normally it will get more quiet if you travel away from the main village of an island or stay away from the touristic coastal settlements. Many people stay in the village where the ferry docks, but if you are looking for some peace and quiet it is better to book something at the other side of the island, or take a taxi and ask a suggestion from the driver.

The easiest would be to pack your suitcase very basic (I always only have handluggage, about six kilo, to make it convieniant to travel from one place to the next) and rent a car to have a look around for yourself and see if there is a village on the island that you really like and where you want to spend some time. In almost every village where the ferries sail in there are one or more car rentals. Only at Donoussa, Gavdos and Anafi I couldn't rent a car in the harbour. On these islands there are only a few hotels and it would be wise to book something upfront. This would also be a good thing for people to do if they travel in Greece in the highseason. The nicest and cheapest hotels are easily booked out first.

The most quiet islands I have been are the ones I have meantioned here (Donoussa, Gavdos and Anafi). To these islands there is very little traffic from the ferries, so you must check the schedules before you sail to them, so you know when you can go back or go to the next island. In the south of Crete, the south of Antiparos and on the islands of Lesbos, Andros and Chios there are also quiet spots, but as I said before: on almost every island there are quiet places, you just have to look for them.

On Crete you avoid Chersonissos and Malia and large parts of the northcoast. Intimate and cute are for instance the villages of Agia Pelagia, Bali, Georgioupolis and Analipsi (also in the north of Crete). On Kos and Rhodes Town it can become quite buzzling, but I have to say that I personally don't like Kos, but I think that Rhodes and Rhodes Town have their charm. Rhodes Town is beautiful and filled with old glory and cozyness, and on the island of Rhodes there are also large beaches with plenty of space.

what are the prettiest islands in Greece, where do I go?

Hans Huisman, Samos Ireon

What the most beautiful islands are is a matter of opinion and if I think that an island is attractive you might think differently. Very often it depends not only on the landscape and what the villages and the beaches look like, but also on the atmosphere and the people that live there. Personally I believe that Crete is the prettiest island of them all, but it is also the biggest of them all, and there is something for everybody: culture, museums, excavations, nightlife and beautiful beaches: Crete is the total package. The biggest mistake would be to stay in one spot. You really need to rent a car and explore the island. I have spend more than a year all together on this island and I still have seen only a fraction of it. This island has enchanted me so much that one day I want to buy a house on Crete and live there. But watch out in what village on Crete you book your accommodation and check my website for tips!! You might end up in a tourist trap and be surrounded by drunk teenagers every evening if you don't. If you are looking for a vibrant destination on Crete in a nice way you might for instance want to try places like Agia Galini, Agia Pelagia or Mirtos. If you are looking for the quiet places and the nice beaches: there are so many on Crete. Just give it a click here and there on my Crete website. You can also check my top 10 of favorite islands above, but remember: it's personal.

Many people get confused because there are so many islands to choose from. It's hard for me to say which island you have to go and visit because every island is different and I am not you. I can tell you what I like, but you might like something totally different. Some people visited many islands and then got hooked on one, to keep returning to this one time after time. I have this with Crete, Paros / Antiparos and with Samos / Patmos, but you might have the feeling on another island some day. You have to find your place. I also haven't seen all of the islands yet, so who knows I will one day find something even better. The website is all about giving you an impression of what it is like and what to expect and on some of the island I tell you what I thought of it. Often you find a nice island is not only because it is beautiful and quiet, or because you've found a nice beach or a nice accommodation. Instead it often has to do with other things like "do I like the local people on the island", "is there a nice atmosphere", and sometimes you just meet really nice and special people that want to see you back on another holiday. So please don't ask me what island would be perfect for you or what island combination or what island you should not miss, because different people like different things. Just take a look around on my site and see if something apeals to you or not.

Of course there are other islands than Crete that are also worth a visit. The nature and the landscape of Andros and Lesbos are much like Crete: green and mountainous with a beautiful nature. The island of Tinos, situated between Mykonos and Andros in the Cyclades, is the opposite: brown and dry with oasises dotted around it. This island with its old terraces (against erosion) also has a beautiful landscape. In the south of Paros you can find many nice small beaches that are usually empty because they can only be reached on foot. Also on Naxos there are quiet spots, and even on the party island of Mykonos (you would need a car though). I want to make a quick note that the money that is made from the tourists on Mykonos and Naxos is not spend on the roads, because the roads are often very bad on these islands or there is none (dirttracks). Overall said and with exceptions the northern islands like Alonissos, Skopelos and Skiathos (the Sporades) and islands like Lesbos, Corfu and Zakynthos are more green than the islands in the south. Big exception is the big green island of Crete, that is one of the most southern islands of Greece (only Gavdos, Gavdopoula and some satelite islands of Crete are situated more south). Another one of my favorites and a really beautiful island is Samos: green, mountainous and with beautiful bays and friendly people. The nearby island of Patmos with its stunning vistas, cozy beaches and lovely people is also a must.

The friendliest people in Greece, on what island can I find them?

It's the people that make the island. First there has to be a basis of course (a great hotel, nice beaches, good weather, delicious food etcetera), but in the end the atmosphere on an island makes you like or dislike an island. On all the islands the people are a bit different. The islands with the kindest people are in my point of view Antiparos, Samos, Milos, Mykonos, Patmos, Leros and Crete. Do nots are in this case Santorini, where I found the people very unpleasant first time (but then again it was end of season and it was 40 degrees Celcius at the time - and at a second visit to the island they were actually quite nice), and in Donoussa there was a language barriere (on which I was told there was some improvement). Donoussa is very attractive small island and all the other ingredients were there to make it MY island: it's quiet, the nature is pretty, and we found a lovely empty beach after a long walk. And yes: in the meantime we have been back to Santorini to give it a second chance and we were pleasantly surprised and really liked it / loved it even... We found some really pretty and quiet beaches and made an interesting trip to the nearby island Thirassia, plus we had a super-location (Leandros Traditional Houses - see the Santorini page).

Nightlife on the islands in Greece

To some islands you go just to rest and lay on the beach, to others you go to party and enjoy the nightlife, and it is easy to combine these two things by hopping the islands on your holiday. On Mykonos, Rhodes and Crete you can party until early in the mornings, and in most of the islands capitols there is some form of entertainment. Even small islands like Antiparos have a square with a couple of nice bars, and so nobody has to feel bored. As for myself I prefer usually to stay at home late in the evening and have a drink on my balcony while looking at the sea. Lately I have started to make restaurant guides for some islands. As for now it is just for Mykonos, Lesbos, Andros and a bit for Paros and Antiparos (update: in the meanwhile it is for more Greek islands), but more islands will follow soon. And as for guides for discotheques and bars: there will probably be none from my hand.

Food and drinks in Greece, supermarkets and restaurants

Prices in the supermarkets in Greece are a little bit higher that in the supermarkets of Holland, but going out to dinner is much cheaper, with the exception of maybe Mykonos (but also here you can have a cheap bite if you look around, take a look at my restaurant guide of this island). Pretty expensive is the coffee. This is why I always bring my French press (a small coffee maker) and often make a cup of coffee myself. This is especially great for the mornings when you just woke up, so you don't need to leave the hotel while your face is still all cracked. This way you can have a quick and delicious cup of coffee and you save a lot of money. For the people that like an alcoholic drink there is good news: the spirits and wines that are made in Greece, like ouzo, metaxa (a kind of cognac) and the raki (made of grapes) are very cheap.

The weather in Greece and on the Greek islands.

Well .... what can I say about the weather in Greece? Most people do not book a holiday in Greece because they like the cold and the want to see snow :)... In July and August mainly in the Cyclades there is often a breeze which they call the meltimi. This can be nice to cool you down on hot days, but there can also be days that it makes you look for a sheltered beach. In May and in October there can be a bad day sometimes in between, with clouds and sometimes a splash of rain, but usually it doesn't stay like that for very long. And the water of the sea in May is still a bit fresh. Well, most of this info probably does not sound like a surprise. This is the normal behaviour of the weather, but off course I only write this down and I don't actually make the weather and neither can I predict it 100% accurate. In the other months I wouldn't know. There are naturally beautiful days at all seasons and generally speaking, the temperature a bit higher than in most other parts of Europe. It can sometimes vary during the winter months with sudden thunderstorms and wind, but also with lovely sunny days. Ultimately it is all a gamble because the weather you can not control and I know exactly how many degrees it is going to be on this or that island in a given month. If I would I would have another job and I would be a millionaire ;).

Naturism / Nudism and the naturist beaches on the Greek islands.

Naturism is mostly not allowed on the Greek islands, but sunbathing without a top on the beaches outside the villages mostly is. On some islands like for instance Crete, Lesbos, Samos, Mykonos, Paros and Antiparos there are one or more beaches for naturists, and on most islands you can find a way somehow. The Greek Islands where I didn't swim in my birthday suit has not been invented yet. Usually it is just a matter of making a walk to a secluded beach and just take off all of your clothes. Most beaches where nudism is allowed are as far as I know on the island of Antiparos and in the south of Crete there is one official nudist beach (Filaki) but on most of the other beaches in the south everybody just take off all their clothes, sometimes on a separate part of the beach (usually at the end). On the beaches that are situated directly in the villages you are supposed to wear a swimsuit, because Greece is still a pretty traditional and religious country. Having said this I want to ad that they are in my opinion very friendly and tolerant.

People that are looking for a lively village with restaurants and bars and a beautiful sandy nudist beach within walking distance you can keep dreaming. Lively and naturist beach do not go hand in hand. These beaches are usually more remote and sometimes you can find an accommodation nearby, but they all tend to be without evening entertainment. Most people that prefer naturist beaches over textile beaches are looking for quiet places without large families with (sometimes screaming) children. Mostly these naturist beaches tend to also not be the best beaches on the island. As soon as houses appear the naturist beach usually disappears at the same time. Some of the villages with a little bit of nightlife and a naturist beach within walking distance are for instance Kokkari on Samos, Tertsa on Crete (you book something in Mirtos) and Antiparos Village. Beautiful sandy naturist beaches are mostly to be found in Crete (but they are quiet). Some of my favorites: Tertsa (again) and Agios Pavlos. Also you can try Molyvos on the island of Lesbos.

Special and / or cheap hotels in Greece and on the Greek islands.

Hotels and apartments, studios and rooms.....I have seen so many in the course of years. I keep getting questions from people if I had any tips for a nice hotel on this or that island. At a certain moment I started adding the nicest hotels to my website in such a way that you can contact the owner by mail and/or telephone. On some islands I always go to the same place, like for instance on Paros with the sweetheart Anna, on Tinos with uh....Anna (another one with the same name), Lilian on Antiparos, Ioanna in Limnionas on Samos, Jakoumina on Patmos, and on Lesbos I have several favorites, amongst which a fantastic beachhouse in Mystegna and a couple of other great and cheap hotels on the island, two hotels on my favorite island of Crete where I always go to, well...the list is endless. There is a special page for the hotels and some hotels I have persuaded to make a special offer for just my website. I think that there is something for everybody because they range from simple rooms to luxury villas (that are not by defenition expensive, see Villa Sophia and the stone house at Kastania Lodge, both on Crete - two super-accommodations on a super-location). I like some variety in the places where I stay but most of them have in common that they are in a peaceful spot.

I am looking for a house on a deserted beach.

Okay people keep on looking. The only place like that where I have stayed and which comes near are the Mystegna Beach Houses which you can find on my page of Lesbos island. Do I know any others? No ;)...

Do I have to book my accommodation ahead or not?

People often ask whether they should book a hotel in advance or if they can just go there and see if something is free or not: can we take the gamble? During high season (July and August) I wouldn't take the gamble and it is recommendable to book your accommodation ahead. In all other cases, you can try, unless of course you want to stay in that special little hotel you had your eyes on. Sometimes the cheaper accommodations are already booked out and it will be more expensive while you thought it would be cheaper this way. Some hotels and apartments that I know get bookings far in advance and it may even be too late when you inquire two or three months ahead or sometimes even a whole year before you want to stay there. Other apartment complexes are completely empty at the same time. It also is different from island to island. In short, I can give no sensible answer.

Places for people with small children - travelling with kids / teenagers

I get many questions from people with small children / babies that want to go on a holiday and that are looking for an island or a village where the sea is a bit shallow or where it just is fun for children. I always give them two tips. Tip number 1 is the village of Agia Pelagia on Crete where a lot of toddlers / young children and 2 is the island Antiparos where the beaches are very shallow, and where there are many children. The people of the island seem to love all of them (just like almost everywhere in Greece by the way...). Other places that come to my mind are the village of Alyki on Paros, the villages of Bali, Almyrida and Georgioupolis on Crete and perhaps Pythagorion on the island of Samos. Wherever you go it's better to avoid places like Chersonissos and Malia on Crete, which is more suitable for teenagers and twins. Here many a glass of alcohol is lifted in the evening hours.

For parents traveling with teenagers it is usually the other way around and the parents want somewhere quiet while the children want to have to do something in terms of entertainment. I give a few ideas. For example you can look on the front page of Crete (just scroll down a bit) and maybe you can find something else on Samos / Patmos, Lesbos or Paros / Naxos / Antiparos. Of course there are other possibilities. You can just go through the site and see if there is anything that you like. The ideal combination or accommodation I cannot give you, so you need to decide for yourself and of course I also don't know not every hotel on each island, and if I vane't been there I cannot give an opinion.

I am looking for a good camping - free camping - questions about campings

Sorry people, but I cannot help you here with information. I never stayed at a camping neither do I intend to do so in the future. I know that there are campings on many islands (f.i. Mykonos, Antiparos, Paros), but I have just never visited them. Free camping in Greece is another issue. There used to be places for free camping on the beaches of Anafi island (but I heard that it is no longer tolerated) and there is I presume still free camping on the island of Gavdos. The fact is that very often situations change and I cannot keep track of all the changes since I cannot be everywhere at the same time :(. Many of the Greeks are not very fond of free camping on beaches etcetera and I understand this: it is nice for you with your tent on the beach, but for me it also makes the beaches look ugly if there are tents on them, plus I don't believe everybody is equally hygienic this way. Sometimes you suddenly bump into pieces of toilet paper in the bushes around such places. There are no naturist campings in Greece.

I travel in high season and I am looking for a quiet place - where can I go?

Yes people, I wish I had the anwer to this one...you can give it a try at one of my "top 10 peace and quiet accommodations" (actually there are more than 10), where I have made a selection of hotels and apartments that are situated away from the mass tourism. No garantee for anybody though since personally I never travel in high season so I never checked, but I think you will have a good chance here. A special offer or cheap lastminute may sound good, but before you book this check where you are going to end up. If you are looking for peace and quiet than it is usually a better plan to especially look for that first and than buy only the airline ticket and book the accommotion seperate. This can be more expensive than a lastminute, so it's an option if you can financially stretch it some more.

I am looking for a quiet and green island that is easy to reach from Athens, where do I go?

Plenty of people are looking for a quiet place that is easy to reach and not far from Athens. Preferably it should be lush and green and with empty sandy beaches to choose from and if possible with a quiet, cheap and beautiful accommodation right on the beach. The basic rule is that the easier it is to get to an island the more people you will find there. If you are looking for something more quiet and more authentic you must make an effort, plan ahead and spend more time on ferries in order to get there. By the way: most of the greener islands you find in the north of Greece, the Ionian islands and the Sporades, but also islands like Crete, Thassos, Andros, Lesbos and Samos are quite green. I'm sorry, but I don't know the ideal accommodation right on the beach on every island. If I didn't write about it than I don't know it and can't help you.

Plane tickets or a holiday package??

Usually I buy just a ticket for the plane and not a holiday package. On an island like Crete or Lesbos, that is a bit bigger than the usual island in Greece, I make sure that there is a car for me at the airport, and on the smaller islands where you arrive on the ferry you will usually be picked up by the owner of the hotel where you booked your stay. You just have to give your flight information or give them the name of the boat that you are on and they will pick you up at the airport or the harbour. If you buy a separate ticket and book the hotels also separate it will normally be cheaper than buying a combined trip to several islands.

Car rental in Greece and on the Greek islands

Where I visit Greece, I always rent a car on the island, even if it is only for 1 or 2 days. This way you get to see the most beautiful and peaceful places. It is also great to stay at the pool of your hotel or at a nearby beach for a day, but personally I like to see as much as possible. On the large islands of Crete and Lesbos car rental is a must, but on each island I personally think a car is essential. On this page on the left are some links to companies for car rental (Crete, Tinos, Samos, Santorini and Lesbos), where I always rent my car. These are reliable companies, and perhaps the information is useful for other people. Whatever you do I would advice you not to rent a car at the hostess of your travel agency because she is likely to charge you twice as much. You can better to find a car hire yourself. We usually reserve a car and have it delivered at airport and leave it behind there as well when we return, which is possible if you pre book your car.

I'd rather rent a bicycle - I want to make walks, now what?

I haven't done much bicycling or tracking myself during my holidays in Greece, but I can tell you that it is populair on the island of Kos where it is quiet flat. Even I did some bicycling of my own once when I was there a zillion years ago. Other islands that I can think of that are suitable for riding a bicycle would be Paros and Antiparos. On Antiparos I also rented a bike for three days but I didn't ride it very much I am afraid, ahah. These two islands are just the first two that I can think of. You can rent bicycles here, just don't ask me where, but find out when you get there.

Most of the islands in Greece are mountainous and not (for me) suitable for making long walks or bike rides. Other places you might want to give a chance: Lesbos around Skala Kallonis, the Gulf of Kallonis and the Gulf of Gera, most of the Cycladic islands, where you can make coastal walks of bike rides (Naxos, Paros, Mykonos, Andros), for Crete maybe the south east of the island and parts of the Apokoronas (anywhere except along the highway that runs in the north of the island), parts of Patmos and Samos. It's not that there are no people on bicycles or making hikes on the island, I am just always so very happy when I pass by in my car, so I am not the right person to ask about islands and places where you can make nice walks and bike rides.....I am too lazy for it, sorry....

I want to rent a boat, where can I do this?

The only places / islands where I know that you can rent a small motor boat are Corfu, Skiathos and Antiparos. For Corfu and Skiathos I have the e-mail addresses on my website so you can ask for information. This is as far as my knowledge goes. I would not know where to charter a sailing boat without a crew or a large motor boat, so you are on your own there and have to find it out yourself... Oh yeah I do by now....in Milos....you can rent a private sailing boat. Check it on my Milos page.

Should I book ferry tickets and hotels ahead or not?

Depending on the time when you travel it can be wise to book ferry tickets and hotels ahead. Especially during high season (Juli and August) you can find yourself without a seat in the ferry to the destination where you want to go to or even without a hotel room. The tickets for the high speed ferries with limited seats tend to be sold out rapidly. Buy these tickets ahead or buy them a couple of days before you want to go there. When you want to go from island A to island B than buy them first thing when you arrive at island A. Even out of high season don't wait untill it is close to departing time if you want to be on board of a high speed. It has happened to me also during the month of May: no seats left. During the weekends when the people from Athens make a little weekend break the ferries and the hotels quickly fill up. If you want to stay at a certain hotel which is cheap or highly recommended or just small in size than it is also smart to book ahead if you already know where you want to go to. This way you can avoid disappointment. If you travel with more than two people (families, groups of friends) and you need a larger accommodation: these kind of rooms, family rooms and large apartments are more scarse and more difficult to find.

Poor cats and dogs.

Yes I know that they are there. I have eyes. You will find dogs tied with a rope to a barrel "defending" piles of trash that nobody would bother to steal anyway, dogs walking on balconies in their own shit, dogs outside houses with almost no or no food and water at all, homeless dogs wondering around, poor pussycats without a home. There are zillions of them. Not all the Greeks maybe treat their house pets as you might do at home where you live. There is a different mentality. Some people find one dog and bring it to another country to give it a better life, but for each one you'll take you will find three more of the same the next year, so it is like mopping the floor with the tap open. If you have an issue with it than contact the Mirtos Animal Project to see if maybe they can help, please don't write to me. I am not taking dogs or cats with me on the plane back to the Netherlands, but maybe somebody at Mirtos Animal Project (Crete) knows somebody who will or maybe they can help :).... On Samos there is the Animal Care Samos.

The website

On the left side of the website are the navigation buttons to go to the island. These are: Alonissos, Amorgos, Anafi, Andros, Antiparos, Chios, Corfu, Crete, Delos, Diplo, Donoussa, Gavdos, Ikaria, Ios, Kalymnos, Koufonissia, Kos, Lesbos, Mykonos, Naxos, Nikouria, Paros, Patmos, Rematonisi, Rhodes, Samos, Santorini, Skiathos, Skopelos, Spinalonga, Symi, Syros, Telendos, Thassos, Tinos and Zakynthos. There are also links to real estate on Corfu, Crete, Lesbos and Greece, the Peloponnesos, plus tips for hotels, nice beaches and car rental on the islands of Greece. Because I regularly get questions from people about naturistbeaches in Greece I have also made a few special pages for nudism. I hope that everybody will have a wonderful time in Greece. If you have tips or nice pictures or a nice story that you would like to share than please send them to me and I will put it on the website (with your name if you like to).

Copier glas - Armada Hotel Amsterdam - Thuiszorg in Delft en Den Haag - Opgelicht op Marktplaats? - Hotels in Amsterdam - Oude kerstballen - Raak lampen

Hans Huisman, https://www.angelfire.com/super2/greece/ 2014
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