Island hopping in the Cyclades – part 1

Island of Mykonos - from the sea

Island of Mykonos – from the sea

 

Last August I spent a couple of weeks island hopping in Greece with a group of Italian friends.

Our first stop was the uber-famous party island of Mykonos.

 

Mykonos town

Mykonos town

The days flew by, lounging on Agios Sostis and Agios Stefanos beaches, watching sunsets and sipping mojitos at Alemagou,  a really lovely lounge bar and restaurant on Ftelia Beach, chasing shooting stars from the windmills of Ano Mera, exploring Ancient Greek ruins of Delos, and sampling local delicacies, of course.

 

 

 

Alemagou Beach Bar

Alemagou Beach Bar

Island of Delos

Island of Delos

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Island of Delos - lion

Island of Delos – lion

View from Delos

View from Delos

One of the many highlights of our stay in Mykonos was a fabulous dinner at Aneplora.

The view from the veranda is truly enchanting, overlooking the small Kalafati peninsula of fishing villages, on the eastern side of the island.

Kalafati beach

Kalafati beach

Kalafati beach

Kalafati beach

The menu features a refreshing fusion of traditional Greek recipes with a twist. My favourite course was the special of Calamari with chocolate sauce.

Chocolate calamari

Chocolate calamari

Fava with orange sauce at Aneplora Mykonos

Fava with orange sauce at Aneplora Mykonos

A little gem not to be missed, and a quieter retreat from the hustle an bustle of Mykonos town.

Our second stop was Koufonisia, a cluster of two tiny islands, Kato and Pano Koufonissi, separated by a 200m strait, between Naxos and Amorgos, known as the Maldives of the Cyclades.

Pano Koufonissi

Pano Koufonissi

Pano Koufonissi

Pano Koufonissi

Pano Koufonissi or Koufonissi, is the capital and the smallest island of the Cyclades, but the one of the largest fishing villages.

The only way to reach the island is either by boat from Mykonos, or by helicopter.

Beach - Pano Kufonissi

Beach – Pano Kufonissi

In summer the island gets populated by Italians and Greeks, among these a few Italian celebrities, and one of my favorite Italian actors, Pierfrancesco Favino.

We stayed at the Koufonisia Hotel & Resort, a great choice. Slightly inland, protected from the Meltemi (Northern wind). It’s apparently the only 4 star hotel of  the small Cyclades. It’s ideally located 5 minutes from the Chora, and at a walking distance to most of the beaches.

Pato Koufonissi

Chora – Pato Koufonissi

The island is so small, you can walk everywhere, but if you feel particularly lazy, there is a bus service, connecting the main beaches with the port and the Chora.

While in Koufonissi, we took a day-trip to Kato, the uninhabited island in front of Pano, and decided to stay for dinner at the only taverna on the island, just by the small port, where we enjoyed a simple, but extremely delicious traditional feast of grilled fish, Greek salad and tzatziki. An experience not to be missed.

Kato - beach

Kato – beach

Taverna in Kato

Taverna in Kato

Taverna in Kato

Taverna in Kato

Greek salad in Kato

Greek salad

catch of the day - grilled in Kato

Catch of the day

Peppers in olive oil - Kato

We then made our way back to Pano with the last boat of the day, at around midnight, and continued our evening in the lively bars of the Chora.

When in Koufonissi, we ate almost every night at Aneplora (yes.. another one!), a really small family-run taverna, located at the fishing port, a good 15 minute panoramic walk from the Chora.

Grilled Octopus at Aneplora Koufonissi

Grilled Octopus

Tzatziki at Aneplora Koufonissi

Tzatziki

Fried fish

Fried fish

Grilled Calamari

Grilled Calamari

Every night we were visiting the kitchen to pick the fish we wanted grilled for dinner.  A lovely taverna with fantastic service, really great food and exceptional prices (full meal with wine around 15 Euros pp).

Follow me, for my next post on the island of Folegrandros ;).

Folegandros

Folegandros

 

3 thoughts on “Island hopping in the Cyclades – part 1”

  1. Wendy LW says:

    I can’t believe you went to Folegandros! I go there almost every other year! :)

  2. The D@ily Out says:

    Ha! I assume you like it! My fave island is Koufonissi though! :)) have you been?

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