A Greek island that was once a lair for pirates is offering families EUR500 a month to move there in an attempt to boost its dwindling population. This remote island is home to the Antikythera Mechanism, an ancient device for calculating astronomical phenomena.
Antikythera is characterized by low hills, rich flora and fauna and picturesque country chapels. The island also offers pristine beaches and impressive waters.
1. Potamos Port
Located in the heart of Antikythera, Potamos Port is the main center for all things island-related. From here, ferries leave for the other islands and mainland Greece. It is also home to a handful of hotels, rooms for rent, a small supermarket, a medical center, and the police station.
The town itself is very picturesque, with narrow streets lined with whitewashed houses. The village square is the perfect spot to enjoy a cup of coffee and take in the stunning views. There are also several restaurants where you can sample local dishes, such as souvlaki and saganaki, or indulge in sweet treats like loukoumades.
For those looking for a more active vacation, there are several hikes in and around the area that will allow you to explore the wild beauty of this unique island. There are also a number of pristine beaches that boast sparkling waters and offer a chance to soak up the sun in tranquil surroundings.
There are also a number of charismatic little churches scattered throughout the island, including three in Potamos (Saint Charalambos, Saint Nicholas, and the twin church of Saint Mary and Saint Dionisios), as well as a church at Pateriana, a church at Katsaneviana, and a church dedicated to Saint Myron in Galaniana.
Located high above the port of Aegiali in Potamos, Pano Gitonia is a minimal cycladic house that is perfect for couples and families who want to experience a quiet retreat on their holiday. The house features two separate bedrooms, a kitchen, a living room, and a terrace with breathtaking views. The house is fully equipped with everything you need for your stay, including air conditioning and free Wi-Fi. It is also just a short walk down to the port and has easy access to the beach.
2. Xeropotamos Beach
The rocky landscape of Antikythera leaves little space for beaches, but when it does exist they are often pristine and crystal-clear. Xeropotamos beach is one of them, a small and beautiful strip with fine pebbles and blue water that changes from smoke-blue and royal to turquoise and malachite depending on the weather. It is the perfect place to spend your summer surrounded by nature without being disturbed, far away from the noisy crowds.
Located in the western part of the island, you will find a long stretch of sandy beach that is ideal for socializing or relaxing. The waters are calm and the seafloor is a bit shallow. The beach is also well protected from wind, making it an ideal choice for families with children. You can enjoy a refreshing drink or meal at the cafes in the area.
Aside from the beaches, Antikythera is also known for its many sites of historical interest, including castle ruins and an abandoned lighthouse. The island is also rich in fauna and flora, with several hiking trails and hidden caves. The Agia Sofia cave near Mylopotamos village is especially interesting, as it contains a chapel dedicated to Saint Sophia and offers incredible sea views from its entrance.
The capital of the island, Chora, is also worth a visit. The 16th-C Venetian mountain-top castle dominates the town, which fans out into a labyrinth of narrow streets and alleys lined with yellow doorframes and facades, in honor of Kythera’s flowering mascot, the sempreviva.
Antikythera is a fascinating island with a long and intriguing history. The island’s small population means that you can discover its sights and experiences without the hassle of big crowds. Ferryhopper makes it easy to book the cheapest ferries to Antikythera, and we provide helpful information about the best places to stay on the island. Use our search tool to see all available ferry routes and book your tickets online today! There are no hidden fees.
3. Kamarila Beach
The tiny island of Antikythera, situated between Kythera and Crete, is a unique paradise. Known for the discovery of the oldest mechanical astronomical computer in history, this isolated island has managed to keep its authenticity even with a small population. It has an elongated shape, about 20 square kilometers and features several sites of historical interest and wild beauty.
Antikythera is the perfect place to relax and escape from the bustling crowds of other Greek islands. The crystalline waters and the lush, undeveloped landscapes will take your breath away. The island is a nature lover’s dream with many hiking trails, scenic spots and cute country chapels. In addition, the island is home to numerous migratory birds, and its taverns serve delicious local produce and traditional recipes.
One of the most beautiful beaches on the island is Kamarila Beach. This pebble beach is located a short walk from the port of Potamos and offers crystal clear waters and sculpted rock formations. It is the perfect spot to enjoy a day of sunbathing, swimming, and relaxation.
Another popular attraction on the island is the ruins of the fortified city of Paleochora, also known as the “Fairy’s Fall”. This is a beautiful waterfall with a stream flowing through the middle. It is an ideal spot for picnics, and it has become a popular destination for hikers.
The best places to stay in Antikythera are the villages of Kapsali, Mitata, Xeropotamos and Galaniana. These villages have preserved their traditional character, and they are full of taverns serving homemade food and delicious wine. They are great for relaxing and getting to know the real Greek way of life.
The island has no hotels, but there are some rooms that can be rented in the port of Potamos. However, construction of a hotel is in progress and it will be the best choice for those who want to stay in Antikythera longer. There are also a few rooms that can be rented by private owners in other villages on the island. The best option is to book accommodation in advance because the number of available rooms is limited.
The island of Antikythera has several sites of historical interest, hidden caves, and hiking trails for visitors. The beaches are a delight to visit as well, as they have impressive waters for swimming and snorkeling. The flora and fauna of the island are also worth exploring, especially the birds. The Hellenic Ornithological Society has set up a bird observation point on the island, which attracts migratory birds.
The small population on the island is primarily made up of families that have been living here for generations and are still very attached to their traditions. The tavernas on the island are quite basic, but they offer a variety of traditional Greek dishes. One can find Cretan pilaf, goat meat, and various kinds of cheeses. Some of the taverns also serve fresh fish from the sea.
Antikythera is a very quiet island, and visitors can enjoy the simplicity of life on this secluded paradise. The island is also a great place to get away from the hectic pace of modern life. There are no nightclubs or discos on the island, but you can visit a bar for a drink and a meal.
A few of the island’s tavernas also have live music, which adds to the atmosphere. In addition, there are a few cultural events throughout the year on the island.
Despite its remote location, it is possible to reach Antikythera by ferry from Piraeus. The boat trip takes about 9.5 hours, and the ferry departs daily. The ferry can also be reached from Gythion of Lakonia, Kythera, Kastelli Kissamos of Crete, and Neapoli of Crete.
The best way to experience Antikythera is by foot. The largest village on the island is Potamos, and it has taverns and shops. The rest of the villages on the island are smaller, but they have a very distinct character. For example, the village of Galaniana has a church dedicated to Saint Myronas and is known as a haven for peace. Other villages on the island include Harhalania, Katsaneviana, and Aegila. All of these villages have their own churches and are worth visiting.