When most people think of the Cycladic Islands of Greece, places like Mykonos and Santorini usually come to mind, BUT there are so many other (over 220) amazing and unique islands worth exploring!
Ios was my favourite island on our Cycladic adventure. It is known in the summer months (June - August) as the international party scene, making places like Ibiza and Las Vegas look tame, but there is also a chill side to Ios with it's pristine beaches, jazz bars and tons of hiking trails. The main square in the upper village is so peaceful during the day, when all of the young party goers are still in bed, recovering from the night before.
During our stay, it felt like we had the entire village to ourselves and we took full advantage. We were able to take some incredible photos of the iconic white washed village and blue domed churches, with hardly anyone around. Ios has somehow remained relatively unscathed by the tourists and cruise ships that infest Mykonos and Santorini. Chora (as they refer to the main village) is a classic Cycladic village, with whitewashed houses, narrow paths that are only accessible by foot that lead the way to copious bars, restaurants and retailers. Compared to other islands on our adventure, we found Ios to be the least expensive. Our hotel, Pitradi Hotel was only $50 per night and featured a room with a comfortable bed, iconic view of the Aegean Sea and infinity pool. The breakfast buffet was only 6 Euros each and had a wide selection of foods to choose from including crepes, fresh fruit, yogurt, omelettes and pastries. We also nibbled on some veg gyro's by the port for only 2 euros, amazing authentic Mediterranean food at Kabouris and yummy Italian food accompanied by Prosecco cocktails at Ciao Bella. All were amazing, veg friendly and inexpensive.
Me, trying to use a map to get around, since I didn't put any data on my phone! haha
Although we didn't have much time to beach hop, we hung out at Milopotas Beach and thought it was perfect. We would have loved to explore more of the beaches on the island but will make sure our next visit to Ios is much much longer.
At the end of our stay, the only thing I regretted about Ios was that I had to leave. There is no island in Greece like Ios, actually, there is no place in the world like Ios!