My list of absolute must visit islands in the Cyclades, Greece

Are you planning a trip to Greece and want to make the most of your time exploring the islands? The Cyclades are some of the most beloved islands in Greece, with postcard-perfect beaches and picturesque villages. Whether you are seeking vibrant nightlife or relaxation, you will find an island to suit your desires. In this post, we’ve rounded up the best islands to visit in the Cyclades.

1. Amorgos

Monastery of Hozoviotissa in Amorgos, 2022. Taken by Artemis Anastasopoulos.

​​One of the most hidden gems of the Mediterranean, Amorgos’ unmatched natural beauty and beaches should be at the top of your bucket list. You must visit the shipwreck of Olympia, it is on a beach that has the clearest water I have ever seen in the Mediterranean. There is only one main road that goes through Amorgos and if you rent a scooter it is one of the most beautiful and scenic routes you will ever see. The rocky hills, the colours of the sea and the sky, the kindness of the locals and the tranquillity you find here are why this island has made it to be #1 on my list. Oh and of course my favourite movie Le Grand Blue was filmed here.

2. Santorini

Sunset in Oia, 2023, Taken by Artemis Anastasopoulos

Yes it is one of the most popular tourist destinations on the planet, BUT the energy on this island is something out of this world. So it just had to be at the top of the bucket list. Santorini is perfect during June, September and October. The streets are less packed and you can take in the beauty of the volcano and the most beautiful sunsets in the world. Check out the black sand beaches, the sunset from Oia and explore the food and shops in Fira.

3. Naxos

Sunset in Naxos, 2022. Taken by Artemis Anastasopoulos.

Naxos has my heart. The food, the people and the activities make it a perfect island to choose for your next trip to Greece! You have to try Naxos potatoes.. they’re insanely good. I almost brought back the potatoes in my suitcase haha! This island has so many beautiful villages to explore, it has an ancient and magical energy unlike any other island in the cyclades. Its perfect for windsurfing, theres lots of cool beach bars to check out and nightlife. It has a perfect balance of peace and fun and thats why its #3 on my list. 

4. Schinoussa

Church in Chora of Schinoussa, 2019, Taken by Artemis Anastasopoulos

One of the smallest and lesser known islands in the cyclades, Schinoussa is a small drop of paradise in the Mediterranean sea. Beautiful beaches and beautiful people, this island captures the essence of Greece perfectly. The church in the centre of the village is one of the most stunning I’ve seen.  I met so many people travelling here and had some of the best nights of my life. There is one bar on the island and its called Vrachos, there we spent all night drinking, laughing until the sun rose over the sea.

5. Donoussa

Livadi Beach, Donoussa, 2022, Taken by Artemis Anastasopoulos

Donoussa has some of the clearest waters in the cyclades and a lot more greenery than most islands. The main town (chora) is next to the port, there you’ll find lots of amazing cafes, restaurants and tavernas. I had the most amazing calamari, kolokithokeftedes, saganaki and other amazing greek dishes at the tavernas here. The water is perfect, and the locals are really welcoming and friendly. It is relatively untouched by mass tourism and is an awesome addition to your summer bucket list. You can get there from Naxos easily. You can walk around the island quite easily or you can rent a bicycle or scooter if you don’t want to rent a car.

6. Tinos

Pyrgos Village, Tinos, 2019, Taken by Artemis Anastasopoulos

Ah Tinos, Mykonos’ quiet sibling. I’ve been coming to this island since I was a kid and it had to make the list because of its famous galaktoboureko (greek pastry with custard), beautiful villages scattered across the island, and serene and isolated beaches. The best galaktoboureko is in the village of Pyrgos in the main square, find the shop thats been open for over 15 years, you’ll thank me later.

7. Koufonisia

Main Port of Koufonisia, 2022, taken by Artemis Anastasopoulos

A very artsy island where you can meet people from all around the world, Koufonisia is how Mykonos was in the 90s. It’s very romantic and beautiful.

Hey, welcome to my travel blog, I’m a Greek photographer, writer, and traveller. Here I’ll be sharing my best travel advice for lesser known destinations. 


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