Breathtaking landscapes, pristine beaches, and mouthwatering seafood await you in Hydra Island. However, this is an island for those who know its quirks and are thus ready to deal with them. If you’re a newbie tourist or someone looking for somewhere more family-friendly, start looking elsewhere. Hydra is not for everyone. Islanders are insular and conservative, moneymaking is not a priority, and the accommodations aren’t exactly five-star. In fact, some are almost halfway between a boutique hotel and a dilapidated shack.
The island, Greece’s only inhabited and smallest in size, attracts visitors mainly from nearby islands and from abroad for its popular tourist attraction – the Temple of Poseidon. Despite its small size, it features a large number of stunning beaches – some just for swimming and a couple perfect for sunset. The island has 14 separate beaches and is not lacking in them with several others hidden in the lush forests.
Hydra Island is a unique and beautiful destination where visitors will find breathtaking landscapes, pristine beaches, and mouthwatering seafood. For travelers seeking an island escape with plenty to see and do, Hydra is a perfect choice. Read on for 10 great things to do in Hydra:
Explore the town
It is home to some of the island’s most enduring landmarks. The central church of St. John the Baptist can be seen from most vantage points of Hydra, and it remains a very popular destination for visitors. The most impressive aspect of this church, however, is its arched stone roof, which provides some of the best panoramic views of nearby narrow streets and winding alleyways. There are several monasteries and churches that have been built since the 16th century, many of which occupy the same spot as older buildings. A quick walkthrough of Hydra’s quaint streets will also reveal an array of white-washed houses still standing that date back to the 19th century.
You can start your day with a beach stroll, picnic on one of the island’s numerous beaches, or join one of the many local excursions that include sea kayaking, boat trips, hiking adventures, horseback riding, and parasailing. Plus, there are plenty of places to stay on Hydra Island if you would like to stay for longer.
Enjoy greek food
Visit the mouthwatering seafood restaurants around Hydra harbor and taste some tasty dishes in the island’s traditional restaurants. Keep in mind that the best restaurants are found in Hydra’s many small “alleyways” and pedestrian streets, not on the main port area where tourists tend to congregate.
The island has a very rich and varied cuisine that also features a number of traditional Greek recipes. You will find fish, meat, poultry, and vegetables cooked in many different ways. The most popular food item on the island is the “souvlaki” (a skewer of grilled meat served with potatoes or rice).
Other common greek dishes include: “kolokithokeftedes”, “loukoumades”, and any form of calamari. You will also find many unique and undiscovered greek dishes in Hydra restaurants. The island’s food is generally cheap, but the prices tend to go up on weekends when locals go out for lunch. In most restaurants, you can expect to pay around 10 euros for an average meal.
Visit the local wineries to taste some of the island’s wine
Hydra is famous for its homemade wines, which are produced on the island and exported throughout Greece. You have the chance to try the most exquisite examples of island-made wine, as well as one of the most distinct tastes of Greece. Tourists are not allowed to visit the wineries themselves, but can taste wines in local taverns. During a tour, you will learn about the winery’s history and get a chance to see what it takes to produce Hydra’s local delicacy.
Discover Hydra’s beaches
There are 14 different beaches on Hydra Island, with a total of around 450 meters of sandy white shores and as much as 350 meters of rocky cliffs. The island’s beaches are the main attraction for tourists who come to this small area of Greece. The main beach, located in Hydra town, is well-organized and has a number of water sports available such as jet skiing, sailing, and windsurfing. There is also a small swimming area at the end of the beach.
The second most famous beach is located on the far end of the island, with beautiful views of the coastline. Despite its location in a wooded area, it is among Hydra’s most popular beaches. It has a shallow beach with a very dynamic environment where waves wash up on the shore with unusual force and force you to retreat when they pull back.
Visit one of Hydra’s many museums
There are a number of museums on Hydra island that are spread out across the town. The main museum is located in the town center and houses a number of exhibits related to local history. The Archaeological Museum also has many exhibits and displays pottery and other artifacts from excavations. There are multiple smaller museums that contain Greek memorabilia and local history.
Sail along the coast with a yatch
The island long ago became a destination for yachtsmen all over the world. Hydra is one of the most picturesque places in Greece on which to sail, and you can charter a yacht for just about any type of water sport. You can go sailing or enjoy other water activities like kayaking, diving, or snorkeling. Hydra Harbour has been built as a safe port for yachts. Y
ou can also explore the coastline and see all of the island’s beautiful beaches. The best thing is that you will be able to combine your water sport with a number of guided tours taken by professional captains who will show you many hidden sites including small bays, caves, and tiny uninhabited islands.
Enjoy Hydra’s stunning nightlife
The island has many cafes and bars with live music during the summer months and throughout the year. The island’s nightlife is not as famous as it used to be but still has activities for both young and old. The music is mainly Greek, though clubbers can also choose from a variety of European hits.
Enjoy your coffee at the cafe on the harbor front
The harbor front in Hydra Town is where you will find the most popular cafes on the island. They are open all day and evening and it is great to enjoy a cup of coffee after a day of sightseeing. The area is not as lively as some other parts of the island, but not too far from the cafes in town are also some cute beach bars that allow you to relax and watch the sunset over the sea.
Hydra Island is a unique and beautiful destination where visitors will find breathtaking landscapes, pristine beaches, and mouthwatering seafood. For travelers seeking an island escape with plenty to see and do, Hydra is a perfect choice.