Discovering the Aegean Islands has become a favorite while in Greece. The Greek territory has around 6000 islands and islets in the Aegean and Ionian Seas, from which only 227 are inhabited. I’m on a mission to discover most of them, and today I will talk about Hydra Island and what you need to know.
Why go to Hydra Island?
Do you want to escape the noise, the traffic, and the people? Then, I have the perfect place for you as I’m hunting down the best spots in Greece. Hydra Island is relatively small, you can walk almost anywhere, and it feels incredible not to have cars around. It’s a bit like traveling back in time. The small picturesque island is ideal for those that look for peace, tranquility, and a total shift of environment. Practicing slow living has been my favorite thing ever, and being on islands like these, I can relax completely and live without stress. Here there’s no need to run after anything.
Every day we rush to work, get the bus on time, take the kids to school, etc., without a pause. We are on autopilot most of the time. This style of living is slowly killing us by making us highly stressed, anxious, and sick. Becoming aware and making small changes toward what we seek to obtain will ultimately make us happy. We should always be satisfied where we are but never become complacent with the situation. We can achieve anything we put our minds to. I can write motivational speeches all day, but back to the topic.
What to do on Hydra Island?
- Explore Hydra Town
This island’s main town is populated with many colorful houses, restaurants, and shops. The lovely Venetian architectural style plays a significant role in shaping the face of the city. Walking the narrow cobbled streets, you will discover charming bakeries, jewelry, and clothing shops that offer a variety of summer linen clothes. In restaurants, you can find traditional Greek and Mediterranean cuisine. Walking up into town, you can get lost in the maze. Nevertheless, the spectacular view over the bay is worth it. Reserve one day to thoroughly explore this central area and take nice pictures.
2. Explore the surroundings
After seeing the island’s central area, go right and left of Hydra town. There are paths along the sea where you can walk to the nearest beach, have dinner at one of the restaurants overlooking the sunset or sit on a bench enjoying the views while putting your thoughts in order. I walked to Mandraki Beach, and on the way there, I spotted the most amazing-looking water. See below the pictures. Also, on the other side of the island, I walked up to Vlychos Beach, swam there, and returned to town at night. Unfortunately, there are no sandy beaches on Hydra for sand lovers like me, but I still enjoyed the pebbled ones.
3. Take a water taxi
Since cars are prohibited, a donkey or a water taxi boat is the only transportation form. You can walk across the island to Limnioniza Beach or take a water taxi to Bisti, Mpisti, and Agios Nikolaos Beach. The boats are always up and down, bringing people from one place to another.
4. Spend the day at the beach
The further you go from the town, the fewer people you will find. And if you travel at the beginning or end of summer, there won’t be so many. You can enjoy having your private beach. You can take a water taxi and spend the whole day sleeping on the beach like me, reading, doing crochet, writing, or any other activity.
5. Sail around
Another option would be to rent a boat and sail it yourself if you have the knowledge or hire a qualified person. Get your group of friends and have the best time of your life swimming in the clear waters of the Aegean Sea. There are many boats in the port waiting to be rented.
Steps to take when you have decided to go to Hydra Island
- Buy a ferry ticket
With every travel I take, the first thing I do when deciding where to go is to find out how to get there. You will search extensively if you are like me and want the cheapest option possible. In the case of Hydra, you can only go there by ferry. I went from Piraeus Port, and it took over one hour. The trick of buying cheap tickets at their regular price with no fees added is to buy them straight from the ferry company.
Some websites might be misleading, and you might think you are buying the ticket from the company when you purchase through a third party. For example, if you want to check Alpha lines, go on their website and book the ticket there. The price difference when booking through intermediaries can be up to 30 Euros, depending on where you buy.
Another tip I had to learn the hard way is never to take a taxi from the street. At least not in Athens/Piraeus area. The taxi drivers are big scammers, and they can claim after you paid them that you only gave 5 euros instead of 20. They will try to manipulate you and play mind games with you. The best thing to do is to book your taxi through an app like Uber or another that you know of. Like this, you are sure that you cannot be scammed.
2. Search for accommodation
Sometimes I find an excellent location I want to go to and don’t search for any information beforehand, and I immediately buy a ticket. However, after searching for accommodation, I realized it was so expensive. Well, Hydra is like that. The cheapest accommodation that I could find was 50 euro/night. However, thanks to Facebook groups, I found a room relatively fast, and you can talk with the owners directly and even get a discount as they do not have to pay a third party.
- no cars
- expensive accommodation
- back in time
Thank you for sticking around till the end. This is what you need to know about Hydra Island. If you want to go to other Greek islands, check out my other posts on Santorini. And stay around for the subsequent explorations as I discover more Greek islands. Also, you can follow me on Instagram to see more of these magical islands.