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Ios - Cyclades - Greece



Ios Island

Ios is one of the Greek Cyclades Islands , located in the Aegean Sea 200 kilometres south east of the mainland port of Piraeus . It's best known as a party playground for young foreign tourists who come here to get blind drunk, let their hair down.then, if possible, get even more drunk.

Despite its reputation as a den of iniquity for inebriated teens and twenty-somethings, Ios has more to offer than trance, dance and tequila cocktails. The island is steeped in history, peppered with pretty chapels and churches and blessed with beautiful unspoilt beaches. It's also the reputed resting place of one of the world's greatest ever literary masters - the Greek poet Homer, creator of the epic works the Iliad and the Odyssey.

Theories about the origin of the island's name abound but a likely one is that it derives from the violets ("ion" in Greek) which adorn the hillsides in springtime. Others say the name comes from the Ionian people who inhabited these islands around 1050 BC.

The island is at the southern end of the Cyclades , a seven-hour ferry ride from Piraeus . Take a hydrofoil from the mainland and you'll get there in four hours. There's no airport but Santorini , which has regular Olympic Airways flights to the mainland, is only half an hour away by Flying Dolphin. There are good ferry and hydrofoil links with the neighbouring islands in the archipelago including Paros , Naxos , Mykonos , Sikinos , Folegandros , Anafi and Syros .

You'll arrive at the port of Ormos on the west coast of the island which is two kilometres from the capital Hora (also known as Ios Town or the Village). The port once had a thriving ship building industry based on the timber from the oak woods which covered the island in ancient time.

Regular buses connect the port and the town or, if you're travelling light, you can climb the wide stone steps which lead up the hill to the village (about 15 minutes walk).

The town is a delightful concoction of narrow, arcaded lanes, blue-domed chapels and traditional whitewashed houses. But beware its Jekyll and Hyde personality - by day it's a delightful place to roam amid the churches, windmills and gift shops; by night it's a seething mass of youthful, drunken humanity hell-bent on maximum mayhem till dawn.

Stay in the port area or near one of the island's quieter beaches if you're not a serious party animal.

The main focus of activity by day is the beautiful but frantic Mylopotas Beach, one kilometre down the hill from Hora. This is where the bright young things surface after midday from their beachside tents, down a shot or three and start partying all over again.

But go further afield and you'll find plenty of secluded bays where the party set never ventures. There are peaceful seafood tavernas where you can savour the day's catch and if you're visiting during one of the island's many religious festivals you'll be able to join the locals for a traditional Greek knees-up. The experience of being invited to an island feast is one not to be missed - the meat is cooked over a wood fire, the wine flows freely and the dancing continues till dawn.


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 Helios Pension Opens in new window Helios Pension Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
Just 400 metres from Yallos Beach in Ios, the Cycladic-style Pension Helios offers air-conditioned rooms with free Wi-Fi and a balcony overlooking the Aegean Sea. more...
 Apartments  Island House Mare Opens in new window Apartments Island House Mare Opens in new window    
Mylopotas ? Show on map
Island House Mare is located just 80 metres from Ios? famous Mylopotas beach. It offers newly-built, air-conditioned residences with view to the sea. On-site parking and Wi-Fi are free. more...
 Armadoros Hotel / Ios Backpackers Opens in new window Armadoros Hotel / Ios Backpackers Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
Armadoros Hotel is situated in Yialos, only 220 yards from the port of Ormos in Ios. It offers a large swimming pool with poolside bar and barbeque area. more...
 Rita's Place Hotel Opens in new window Rita's Place Hotel Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
Rita's Place is a family run complex of 10 rooms overlooking the beautiful resort of Yialos, only 5 minutes walking distance to Ios Chora. more...
 Hermes Opens in new window Hermes Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
Hotel Hermes overlooks the beach of Mylopotas and offers wonderful views of the Aegean Sea from its rooms and pool area. It is located 700 metres from Ios Town. more...
 Hotel Petradi Opens in new window Hotel Petradi Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
Within 500 metres from the long, sandy beach of Mylopotas in Ios, Hotel Petradi features an outdoor pool with unobstructed sea views, a snack bar with a furnished sun terrace and a restaurant. more...
 Lofos Village Opens in new window Lofos Village Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
Located in the main town of Ios, Lofos Village offers accommodation with balcony enjoying panoramic views over the island. more...
 Yialos Ios Hotel Opens in new window Yialos Ios Hotel Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
Close to the picturesque port of Ios and steps from the beach, Yialos Ios Hotel welcomes you to its warm atmosphere and functional accommodation, just 1 km from Ios town centre. more...
 Dionysos Seaside Resort Ios Opens in new window Dionysos Seaside Resort Ios Opens in new window    
Mylopotas ? Show on map
Dionysos Seaside Resort is located right at Mylopotas Beach. This 4-star property features elegantly decorated rooms, offering a view to the sea, pool or garden. more...
 Parthenon Opens in new window Parthenon Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
With a panoramic view of the picturesque Chora, Hotel Parthenon is in the center of Ios. In a neoclassic building, the hotel features an elegant restaurant and bar, and offers rooms with free Wi-Fi. more...
 Relux Ios Opens in new window Relux Ios Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
Offering an outdoor pool and a restaurant, Relux Ios is centrally located in Ios and just 300 metres from the port. Free WiFi access is available in all areas. more...
 Levantes Ios Boutique Hotel Opens in new window Levantes Ios Boutique Hotel Opens in new window    
Mylopotas ? Show on map
Only a 10-minute walk from the famous Mylopotas Beach, the Levantes Ios Boutique Hotel is located over the sandy beach, offering views towards the neighbouring islands. more...
 Galaxy Hotel Opens in new window Galaxy Hotel Opens in new window    
Mylopotas ? Show on map
Boasting an outdoor pool, Galaxy Hotel enjoys a privileged location just 50 metres from Mylopotas Beach. It offers free Wi-Fi and free private parking facilities. more...
 Villas  Agalia Luxury Suites Opens in new window Villas Agalia Luxury Suites Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
Offering an outdoor pool and a restaurant, Agalia Luxury Suites are just 50 metres from Tzamaria Beach. more...
 Rita's Rooms Opens in new window Rita's Rooms Opens in new window    
Ios Chora ? Show on map
Peacefully situated and overlooking the beautiful resort of Yialos, this modern yet traditional hotel has been built according to typical Aegean architectural styles and offers wonderful panoramic more...

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