What do you think of a trip to one of the most beautiful islands in Greece just an hour from Athens?
Hydra is a perfect escape from the city, making it an ideal day trip, where you can hike along the coast (head to the monastery of Profítis Ilías at the top of the hill) or simply spend a day at the pristine beaches.
Just an hour’s journey from the port of Piraeus by hydrofoil, this wonderful island is undoubtedly a place worth spending more time, and was once home to musician Leonard Cohen and many other artists, who fell in love of this captivating island.
Widely known as one of the most beautiful islands in Greece, Hydra is part of the Saronic Islands and is only an hour by hydrofoil or two hours by ferry from Piraeus. Its most famous for its beautiful architecture, pebble beaches and captivating character.
One of the greatest parts of this beautiful little paradise is that there are no cars allowed on the island other than garbage trucks and ambulances. The main mode of transport here is mules and donkeys, as well as water taxis.
Its natural beauty and fascinating history began in the 18th century when Hydra was prosperous thanks to its commercial fleet which traded with countries like Spain, France and America. The island also played a major role in the 1821 War of Independence, providing a significant amount of ships and resources in the fight against the Ottoman Empire; their fleets were powerful and participated in crucial naval battles.
Today, it thrives due to its natural beauty and charm, which has won over local Greeks and international visitors, including celebrities, fashion designers, artists, photographers and writers.
With 300 churches and six monasteries across the island, as well as plenty of gorgeous beaches, fabulous tavernas and hikes, there’s certainly plenty to see and see.
Hydra’s main cathedral is located in the center of the harbor below the clock tower. It is said to have been built by a nun when she arrived in 1643 and consists of a magnificent Byzantine-style cathedral.
Founded in 1918, the Historical Archives Museum displays rare artifacts and documents related to the historical, traditional and cultural aspects of the island from 1708 to 1865. Within the museum is an Archives and Museum Section and a Library. Kountouriotis The museum is dedicated to Lazaros Koundouriotis, who played a key role in the War of Independence. It was built in 1780 and features beautiful interiors and paintings by Greek artists. Ecclesiastical Museum located on the west side of the monastery and housed in a former monk’s cell.
Some of the must-see beaches include Vlychosa beautiful pebble beach in the picturesque town of the same name, just 2 km west of Hydra Town, Kaminia1 km west of Hydra town and near the village of Vlihos, the shallow waters of Kaminia make this pebble beach ideal for families and children, Spilia is a rocky “beach” with translucent blue waters and Agios Nikolaos, which is a secluded and beautiful sandy beach.
No visit to Hydra is complete until you’ve taken a boat trip as the island is just 50 square kilometers and is spectacular from the water.
Whichever direction you turn, it’s truly captivating!
*All images courtesy of Nick Bourdaniotis Photography (Copyright)
On this day in 1771, Laskarina Bouboulina was born