The Greek Islands! Pick & Choose
So many Greek Islands to go to and so little time! So how do you choose your Greek island if you have never been? You ask friends who have visited a few Greek Islands and you read this Greek Islands site and make up your own mind!You've no doubt heard of two of most popular Greek Islands; Mykonos and Santorini? Just click the preceding links and as in all my Greek island information pages, you will learn all about Mykonos and Santorini including Hotels and general ferry schedules information too!
THE 7 MAJOR GREEK ISLAND GROUPS MAP
Depending on where exactly a Greek island group is there are several different ways of reaching them, obviously by boat mostly, but not always, as some Greek islands have airports too.The Greek islands of the Ionian boasts Lefkada which you can actually drive to. To reach other Greek Islands, particularly the Sporades, from Athens, one has to bus or drive to the embarkation ports mentioned: Kimi for Skiros and Aghios Kostandinos for the other islands of the very salubrious Sporades Greek Island Group. On the map rght you can see the seven Greek Island groups and staying within a partcular group will make catching ferry boats easier! Staying on the main routes will make it easier still. The real time to worry is summer when the Meltemi winds can cause Ferry Boat delays and cancellations!
Greek Islands: When to Go
There are two times to go to the Greek islands: 1. The second half of July and all of August (which is high season) and 2. all the rest of the year, bearing in mind its only warm enough to swim in Greece April thru September generally. Crete and Rhodes being somewhat warmer year round.
Greek Islands: High Season or Low?
High season its crowded , often over booked and things can be frustrating. Its also when there are the most unbelievably interesting, beautiful and nice people from all of the world and especially Europe to be met and fun to be had. You'll need firm reservations in hotels and on ferry boats if you have a vehicle. If you don't have a vehicle then August 15th is when to worry as ALL OF GREECE is traveling that weekend. Its Greece's second biggest religious holiday of the year after Easter. Many mainland Greeks residents are from the Greek islands originally and return there every chance they get! Wouldn't you?The rest of the year on the Greek islands, its either leading up to high season or winding down from high season. Most of the Greeks you meet and whom help you in bars, stores, hotels and restaurants on Greek islands don't live there all year. They go back to Athens come October. 90% of all Greek island hotels close too. Remember Crete and Rhodes, two of the biggest Greek islands, have a longer season being further south. In the Greek island table menu below, yellow backgrounds denote"party" Greek islands. Non yellow backgrounds denote non-party Greek islands. There can be a party found on just about any Greek island in August if you want to find it! But the yellow backgrounds are Greek islands where its more a question of where not to find a party! Click the Greek island ferry schedules link at the bottom of the page to to learn everything you need to know about Greek island ferry schedules and Greek island ferry boats. You can even buy ferry tickets on-line too!
Greek Islands Groups
There are several Greek island Groups (see list below). Other Greek island sites will tell you each Greek island group has its own unique individual characteristics and qualities which is true the same way your hand has different finger prints or rings on each finger. They all share certain influences, usually due to occupation by foreign powers, The Romans, Venetians, Normans, Knights of St. John, Italians, British, Germans and so on, and these vary from island to island.For all practical purposes the Greek Islands have much more in common than they have apart. On the plus side what stands out in my mind is the beautiful, deep blue and crystal clear waters of the Aegean and Ionian seas, or the many lovely beaches, beautiful people, and charming cubistic architecture! Geologically the Greek islands are mountain tops around which the sea has risen. Some Greek islands are greener than others such as Thassos, Corfu, Skiros, and Skopelos to name a few. Most Cycladic islands are short on water. Further generalizations also include: most Greek islands older capitals are usually on a high mountain top as a defensive measure against pirates. Ancient capitals may be anywhere on Greek islands. If the island was occupied by the Venetians then there likely will be ruins of an old castle or fort. There may be more than one port.