Holiday in Aegean Islands

Economic crisis notwithstanding tourism in Greece continues to flourish. It is not just Athens that attracts the tourists. The Aegean islands are equally popular with the people who want to soak up the sun and indulge in a range of outdoor activities.

Chios, Ikaria, Lesvos (Mytilene), Limnos, Thassos and Samos together make up the Aegean Islands. As the name suggests, these islands are located in the Aegean Sea. Each of the islands has something unique to offer but they do have some common characteristics. For one, all of them have mountainous landscapes and deep forests decorated with gushing streams and pine trees. Their coastlines are dotted with stunning golden sandy beaches, peaceful coves and brilliant views.

Nature's gifts apart, the islands also boast a human touch visible in the churches, architecture and ancient sites. The stunning scenery is complimented by warm locals who welcome you to experience the village life undisturbed by the tourist crowds.

Visit Limnos and you can spend lazy, languid soaking up the sun. The island will especially appeal to those looking for a secluded holiday given that it is one complete stretch of long sandy beach and gentle hills strewn with wild flowers in spring and crocuses in autumn.

Ikaria can safely be considered as the most striking of all the Aegean Islands. Complete with forest-covered mountains, sheer cliffs and deep ravines covered with swirling mists, it transports you into another world altogether. However, its most outstanding feature is the radioactive springs that are well known for their therapeutic powers. The ancient church of Agia Irini, the archaeological museum, the coastal settlement of Gialiskari and the scenic beach of Mesahtis are the other attractions of the island. While there, you can also taste the legendary eminent black wine from fokiano vine.

Named after a famous hero Lesvos is home to a rich flora and fauna and spectacular olive groves. Like Ikaria, Lesvos also has mineral springs known for their curative powers. The mild Mediterranean climate adds to the allure.

Samos, within three kilometres of Turkey, is a much sought out destination by the nature enthusiasts. Apart from the landscapes, the hinterland is also populated with a variety of birds and flowers.

Chios promises endless hours of seclusion, sea and communion with nature. You can spend the days languishing on the beaches, trekking up the mountains or browsing through museums. The island also has a history of maritime greatness. At night, you can sample a truly Hellenic nightlife.

Thasos is extremely popular with the Greeks given its proximity with the mainland. Given its spectacular natural beauty it is also called the emerald island. There are several archaeological remains in and around the capital Thesos (Limenas).

Each of these islands offers a fair share of accommodation options including private Greece villas and hotels. Private holiday homes are favoured by those who wish to savour the island life in peace and in their own space.

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