|If you are looking for a greek island far away from the mass tourism, Folegandros is the one!
rewards you with quiet roads, panoramic views over empty rolling hills and sights of simple farm people living an entirely traditional life.
You'll love life on the clifftops in the medieval village of Chora, where picturesque pedestrian alleyways weave through the collections of three village squares, and islanders gather to work and play.
Folegandros is the perfect raw complement to the more polished, sophisticated and commercial Santorini.
Visit Folegandros and enjoy the true genuine essence of greek life!
||Folegandros is a welcoming little island of the Aegean, located just 1 hour by SuperFast Ferries from Santorini. Folegandros is one of the smallest island of southern Cyclades, neighbouring to Sikinos, Ios, Milos, Kimolos, Sifnos, Paros, Naxos and Amorgos.
Offering a wild nature and a blue ocean water, Folegandros is a secluded greek island with a barren landscape including cliffs and caves.
Wild nature is mild and friendly for our relaxation and tourist facilities have not spoiled yet the traditional character of this Cycladic island.
Few roads, easy life and a simple transportation system: donkeys!
On arrival by boat the first village you meet is Karavostasis with a small harbour, some whitewashed houses, beach chalets, fishing boats and a nice beach.
The Capital of Folegandros is the medieval town of Chora built on a 200-metre high cliff. It's a pictoresque settlement with an ancient part inside the Venetian castle walls and a modern one, outside the walls. The medieval settlement of Kastro is actually the old part of Chora and it's a raw of houses built on the clifftop in a defensive scheme to protect the island from raiders (that's why the name Kastro that means fortress).
Driving north, you reach the farm village of Ano Meria, on the road you'll see a couple of fishing taverns with octopus hang outside to dry. This village is also visited for the simple life of its inhabitants, for the Ecological and Folklore Museum of Folegandros and for a small bar on the clifftop where people gather to see the sunset.
Eating out in Folegandros:
There is a wide choice of restaurants and tavernas, all concentrated in Chora. Walking the pedestrian alleyways of the town centre, you'll discover small squares with several tavernas and restaurants, very busy. In the evenings it's hard finding a table, so it's better to go downtown earlier as none is in a hurry to leave.
The majority of the taverns and restaurants in Folegandros serve dishes made of local products: fresh local octopus, lobsters and fish. Nice atmosphere and very delicious dishes freshly cooked.
A traditional dish of Folegandros is "matsata", a fresh hand made pasta mixed with meat (goat, cock, rabbit or meat balls) in tomato sauce and with grained salty local cheese.
Folegandros as no intensive nightlife, it's suitable for families and couples, but some clubs abd bar play dance music and serve good cocktails.
A typical drink not to miss is "rakomelo" (raki mixed with honey), either cool or hot.
It's not a party island but, walking in the town center, it can happen to be automatically invited to a greek wedding reception playing on the streets and square till morning, dancing and drinking.
There are lots of quiet and wild beaches all around the island (costline is 40km long). Most of Folegandros beaches are not sandy (pebbles or rocks) and accessible only by boat from Karavostasis or from Agali.
Alternatively you can reach some beaches walking down footpaths crossing the hills.
From Ano Meria you can walk from 40 to 90 minutes to reach many beaches, the finest being Agios Georgios, towards the northeast.
From Chora take the road heading north going uphill and you'll enjoy breathtaking views before descending sharply down to the sandy beach of Vathi and the beaches of Agali and Agios Nikolaos.
You can find some small beaches around the port area: Vardia and Livadi (camping area).
Most of the beaches of Folegandros are not organised and there are no services at all. So bring with you all you might need to spend at least half day on the beach: water, food, sunbeds, umbrella or a tent (shadow is affordable inside rocks or under tamarisk trees). Only Agali and Agios Nikolaos beaches have a tavern.
Must-see beaches in Folegandros are: Katergo, Agali, Ampeli, Livadaki, Agios Nikolaos, Karavostasi, Livadi, Pountaki and Agios Georgios.
- The Monastery of Panagia (The Church of the Virgin), lying on the clifftop above Chora and accessible through a pedestrian road winding uphill
- Chryssospilia Cave, located north-east of the island just ten metres above the sea
- Folklore Museum, housed in a farmhouse located in Ano Meria
- The Lighthouse
- Ano Meria village
||Ferries to Folegandros from Santorini & Athens:
A lot of the islands in the Cyclades are easy to get to, NOT Folegandros. It has no airport or very deep-water port. It was never developed for mass tourism or cruise ships.
The ferries from Athen’s main port, Piraeus, aren’t as regular, but there are at least 5 services a week for the mostly Greek holidaymakers.
It's more convenient to fly directly to Santorini and take a boat to Folegandros the same day or the following one.
On the Santorini-Folegandros-Sikinos-Ios-Naxos-Paros-Piraeus route there are three ferry services per week. It takes around 3 hours to reach Naxos, 4 hours to Paros and 10 long hours to Piraeus.
To/From Piraeus: The port of Piraeus is 104 nautical miles. During the peak tourist season the local transport authorities run Speed Boats every day to meet the tourists’ demands. The journey lasts 4 hours.
Trip by usual boats could take up to 9 hours if one goes via Western Cyclades and 11 hours on the Eastern Cyclades route.
To/From Santorini: The island of Folegandros is conveniently connected to Thera once or twice daily. It takes around 2 to 3 hours by usual boats and just 1 hour by Super Fast Ferries.
Folegandros is well connected to the islands of Anafi, Therassia, Ios, Naxos, Paros, Santorini, Sikinos and Syros.
Folegandros is an unspoiled island of Cyclades far away from packages and tour organizers. Nevertheless, there are quite few good quality accommodation in Folegandros.
Hotels and rooms for rent can be booked mainly in Chora, but also in Karavostasi, Agali and in Ano Merià. In Livadi there is also an organized camping.
There is no local tourist board, but just a privatly held tourist office.
Advance booking is absolutely necessary in July/August!
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