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Which Greek island for a couple's holiday?

Hi all,

I'm looking for some advice on which Greek island to pick for my next holiday. Having never been before and with so many beautiful islands to choose from, I'm not sure where to even begin.

My boyfriend and I would be looking to go either in late August or in September (we're pretty flexible) and I'm guessing the weather will still be warm then?

Having spent our last couple of holidays traveling around different locations (Tour of various places in France, Amalfi Coast, Dalmatian coast in Croatia), we are keen to have a more relaxed holiday in the sunshine this time, where we can base ourselves in one place and just enjoy that location. For me, I love sandy beaches and the sea (and our previous holidays have been far from beachy vacations) and so I'm keen for somewhere with beautiful beaches, sea views and pretty landscapes. Somewhere to soak up the sun and relax.

However, as my partner is not really one for sunbathing on a beach all day, we'll need to be somewhere with a bit more going on that just a simple serene retreat - somewhere where there are perhaps nice towns / cities / villages for us to also go and explore (we love visiting new places, finding nice restaurants and bars wandering around stalls and shops). Somewhere where there are also activities we can do such as boat trips, renting a boat, island hopping, water sports, renting a buggy etc would be great.

We'd be flying from the UK.

Any recommendations would be great!

Posted by
11350 posts

August is high season, very crowded so you would trouble finding a hotel at this late date. And hot too.
Look at Paris, Naxos or Milos. Santorini has a beautiful view but the beaches are not very good. It is crowded with cruise ship tours and very touristy.

Posted by
3130 posts

I think Suki meant Paros, not Paris. Also take a look at Antiparos.

Posted by
1172 posts

If you could delay your trip until September it will be far less crowded but still enough going on to have a more traditional "Greek" experience. While many islands start to close down there is always shops, markets and tavernas open for locals so you may end up having a more enjoyable time with locals than hordes of tourists.

The Aegean will still be warm, weather much more comfortable than August and costs are lower for accommodations.

There are numerous Greek Islands to go to.

Some of my favorites are Naxos, Amorgos, Sifnos, Milos, Tinos, Chios, Kythira, Ikaria and several others. Crete is Greece's largest island and offers everything you are looking for especially if you stay in or near Chania on the west of the island. Lots to do, see, explore and experience. All the others offer more traditional atmosphere but still lively that time of year without over-the-top crowds.

Check out Matt's Greek Island Guide for lots of info:

Posted by
3551 posts

Have u thought of a greek island tour? Celystal Cruises has many to choose from. It would give u a taste of the greek islands and frankly they are qute reasonable in cost. I was pleasantly surprised in late spring of our cruise. Gd food, nice entertainment, very clean cabins etc. pool and sun decks. The age groups on board were varied. With seniors much less than i would have thought. They use a smaller ship about 1500 passengers.
U may also consider Rhodes with its varied options.

Posted by
22 posts

PAROS although, it’s not so famous as Mykonos and Santorini, bus it has one big plus! It’s for everyone! It has beautiful beaches, sport activities, trendy bars and clubs, tasty food, wineries, traditional architecture, paths for trekking and hiking etc. It is the perfect destination for both families and adventurous travelers.

Also from Piso Livadi (eastern Paros) you can also take small ferry for a daily excursion to nearby islands e.g. Naxos, Mykonos , Santorini Koufonisia, Delos.

And I agree in September it will be far less crowded and the sea is still warm

Posted by
3 posts

Hi Anthea,
I am a native Greek, extremely passionate with the sea and have visited almost all the Greek islands with a yacht.
Although I need more details from you, I would dare to provide my suggestions.
I would recommend Cyclades complex in Aegean sea, where you can choose:
- MYKONOS, because it is the most beautiful Greek island, has only awesome beaches no matter which one you choose to swim. Although this island is expensive since attracts the rich people and celebrities all over the world. From Mykonos you should buy a boat ticket to DELOS isl. (
- SANTORINI, because it is a top 10 destination world wide. Highlights here, the volcano and the Vinsanto wine.
- PAROS, awesome as well but cheaper. This isl is a pair with ANTIPAROS so you can have 2 isls same time
- Allow me to suggest one more isl. which is very close to Athens: HYDRA. Go there even for 1 day.
Since you are an adventurous couple, I believe that you can charter a boat and visit as much islands as you can. Why not?
I found a link that fits to your case:
Please reply in case you need more assistance.