Greece thrives with small and picturesque villages hidden behind mountains or standing in plain sight on green valleys, on the main land as well as throughout the islands. In the west we have the Ionian Islands where you can find green, terracotta and ochre buildings that form a variety of settlements with great historic and cultural background and influences by foreign occupation. In the east, there comes the blue and white of the Aegean to travel you through the beauties and mysteries of the sea.
While visiting a Greek island it is quite difficult to explore every single village, but how about visiting the most scenic ones? For your best Greek islands experience, let’s explore together the most beautiful villages of the Greek Islands!
The village of Kourkoumelata is considered to be the crown jewel of villages around the island and of unique beauty around the whole country. It is known for its beauty and remarkable views to the sea, town planning and street layout, while still remains a treasure well-hidden. Utterly ruined by the 1953 earthquake that destroyed the biggest part of Kefalonia, it was rebuilt entirely by the ship owner George Vergottis and his family, who supported financially its reconstruction. Their only demand was that the new village would be rebuilt according to the neoclassical architectural tendencies of those times and the official street layout, with many Swiss influences.
One of the most beautiful villages that one can visit in Santorini is the Emporio, or also known as Nimporios. Emporio is the largest village of the island and it is close to Fira. It is considered to be a traditional settlement and one of the five fortfied castles in Santorini. Castelli was built during the Venetian occupation of the island and is a compact settlement with narrow streets, paths covered with arches, deadlocks and basements, small terraces and flowery courtyards. The inhabitants used to build their houses side by side as a protective shield against the pirates. The old part of the village features narrow picturesque alleys and unique architecture that adds to the quintessential atmosphere of the village. Walking through the village, time feels like it has stopped in an ambience of a past era.
The local residents of Lefkes boast about the uniqueness of their village. It is considered to the most authentic Cycladic village of the Aegean Sea and at the same time the smallest village of the mainland of Paros. It is built at an altitude of 300 metres above the sea level, on a verdant hill covered with olive trees and pine trees and offers a breathtaking view of Naxos Island. Traditional whitewashed houses, mixed with Venetian architecture, wonderful churches dating from the 15th century, whitewashed windmills and beautiful dovecotes, create a stunning ambience.
A picturesque settlement with white houses and no cars or motorbikes, embracing tranquil, azure blue waters. Situated in Southern Crete, the only way to Loutro is on foot by winding cliff paths or by ferry from Chora Sfakia or Agia Roumeli during the summer. The whitewashed village is at the foot of a steep mountain with a thigh-burning, 600metre climb to the summit and the Anapolis plateau. Release yourself from the stress and tensions of everyday life and let them be washed away by the unruffled waters of the sea and the beauties of this little village.
The small fishing village of Kini is set west of Ermoupolis and a few kilometres from Galissas. This picturesque village in Syros is well known for its beautiful beach and the succulent sea food, but most of all for its magnificent sunsets. The sunlight sparkles off the white houses that are dotted along the bay and small fishing boats float on the crystal clear blue surface of the sea creating a perfect scenery that you shouldn’t miss.
At the North East corner of Corfu , one can find the small and beautiful little village of Kassiopi. It is a charming fishing village with a traditional port and is dominated by a Roman fortress. Nowadays, Kassiopi is thought to be a cosmopolitan town with several taverns, cafes, bars and choices for accommodation. However, its picturesque and traditional character still remains intact with the beautiful houses that lie to the east of the village and the tiny, pebbly beaches to the west.
Away from the beautiful beaches of Zante, lies a charming little mountain village, known as Louha. It is surrounded by verdant green scenery and is located on one of the highest spots of the island. Traditional and scenic, it gives off an essence of another era, the way that Zante and its villages used to be before the impact of mass tourism. Enjoy the spectacular views of the valley while relaxing at the centre of the village and the traditional architecture of the buildings that were not destroyed by the 1953 earthquake.
If you decide to visit one of the above Greek islands don’t omit to explore these hidden treasures. The most beautiful villages of the Greek Islands await you!