Where do Athenians go on their summer holidays? The answer is Andros. This picturesque island is just an hours ferry ride from the capital and is one of the more unknown islands amongst foreign tourists in the Cyclades.
Why you should go
With numerous trails connecting the main towns, Andros is a walker’s paradise and it’s choice of 70 beaches means that it’s the perfect escape from the city.
The main town, Hora, is the biggest attraction, with its many shops, museums and Cycladic architecture however quirky seaside village, Batsi is, if anything, much prettier. Although small, Batsi has many traditional Greek tavernas and stylish cafes. Batsi Beach is a great place to spend the day and sun beds can be rented out for just three euros each. A service ran from Gavrio, the port town, to Batsi, roughly every hour. This took around 15 minutes and cost €2.60.
Where to stay
I would recommend staying at Gavrio, especially if you are island hopping as its so convenient. We stayed in Galaxy Hotel, which we spotted from the ferry and were in our room five minutes after. There is a strip of shops and tavernas at the port, along with a bus station with buses going all across the island. Many of the best beaches are tucked away so it may be worth hiring your own vehicle.
Andros is known for its waking routes and maps of these trails can be found online or all over the island. We were short of time and got the bus from Gavrio to Batsi. However there is a trail that you can follow which takes about an hour and a half.
Best for: Walking, eating, relaxing and those who enjoy a slower pace of life. A good day trip if staying in Athens.
To know: For greater flexibility it may be better to rent your own vehicle in Andros. If you’re looking for a vibrant night life then probably better to head a little further on to Mykonos. Andros has over 70 beautiful beaches along its rocky coastline and 300 km of footpaths for hiking. If in Hora make sure to visit the olive museum.