Where: Greece: Small Cyclades: Koufonissi
When: Anytime between May and end of September when its warm enough to swim.
Get there: In season there are direct ships from Athens and other bigger islands of the Cyclades. Also there are daily smaller boats from Naxos called the “Skopelitis”. Just ask at a booking place. If they tell you there are no ships it only means the bigger ships aren’t driving. Book a ticket to Naxos and ask them about the times of the “Skopelitis” for the connection to Koufonissi.
Price: One of the cheapest islands of the Cyclades. Whilst famous islands like Mykonos and Santorini get expensive those little islands stay cheap. You’ll be sharing the beaches with less tourists and the about 300 permanent inhabitants don’t over price anything.
Do: Leave your car behind… You really don’t need it. The islands are so small you can literally walk from one side to the other in 45 minutes. There are walkways from beach to beach where you can discover caves, sandy beaches, rocky beaches and the chances are good you’ll have a beach just for yourself (at least in June or September).
My tip: Do a day trip to “Down Koufonissi”. It is only 800 meters away and has many taxi boats going there multiple times a day. Whilst about 300 permanent residents live in “Upper Koufonissi”, the down island has maybe 10. There are only a couple of houses, lots of sheep and only one old tavern. However free camping is allowed there and many people take advantage of that. So in summer you’ll see many nature lovers staying there for weeks enjoying the quiet and nature. If you’re not the free camping type the beaches are definitely worth a day trip.
Click here to find out where to have drinks in Koufonissi