Ios is situated approximately halfway between Naxos and Santorini and is an island of incredible beauty, immensely popular with younger tourists of all nationalities it is the ideal place to go if you enjoy partying all night, especially in July and August. Ios, it has been claimed is “the ultimate party island in Greece”.
In antiquity Ios was associated with Holmer, it was believed that he spent his last days and was buried at Plakotos. Although this has been disputed, every May Ios celebrates the Homeria Festival which concludes on the 15th May with a torch procession from the port to Plakotos. During the Turkokrateia Ios was known as “Little Malta” because it’s naturally secure port provided shelter for many corsairs.
Chora is traditionally Cycladean with many steps and winding narrow alleyways, whitewashed houses dripping with flowers and restored windmills. The little streets are lined with boutiques, bars, restaurants and clubs. The narrowness of the streets also makes Chora completely inaccessible to cars. Nowadays you can get there by bus or taxi and no longer have to walk up the winding steps from the port, however, you may want to just to take in the beautiful views. The port of Ormos is also a popular place to stay, built ampherically overlooking the sea it has supermarkets, boutiques and shops selling jewellery and souvenirs. From here boats leave regularly for day trips to the island beaches and to neighbouring islands. Close to the port is Yialos which has lots of restaurants, beach bars a marina and a popular organised beach.
Ios has around 35 beautiful beaches some organised and some secluded and some only accessible by boat. It’s most popular beach is Mylopotas , lined with beds and umbrellas with plenty of water sports and beach bars. It is also home to Far Out Club which hosts all kinds of events throughout the summer. Another fantastic beach is the scenic sandy beach at Manganari, with its crystalline waters. For film buffs some scenes from the cult diving film Le Grand Bleu were shot in Manganari,
If you want to visit Ios without the partying why not visit out of season or head for the interior which has beautiful scenery and many little whitewashed churches.
Ios is ideal for the young and young at heart, groups of friends and solo travellers.
It can be combined with many of the islands in the Archipelago given its central position.