the party island with sandy beaches



Ios lies between the islands of Santorini, Sikinos and Naxos. It is known as ”the party island” because of the many night clubs and bars functioning in its capital during the summer, and this is not typical for a small and less populated island as Ios is.

But Ios is not only about parties and all types of tourists are welcome. Apart from the bars, the island has large sandy beaches, beautiful Chora and white churches with thrilling sea views.

Hotels in Ios

General information about Ios

The main square

A significant part of Ios is wild and not populated, so it is easy to take a full picture of the island in a few days. The two seaside resorts and the only village - called Ios Chora - are located on the west coast, and all public services can be found there but hotels are available in more remote places as well.

As a quintessential representative of the Cyclades, Ios has cubical white-washed buildings, small labyrinth-like streets and many churches. The locals say (joke or not) that there are 365 churches and chapels in total, one for each day of the year.

Where to stay in Ios?


Everything in the island is concentrated around Ios Chora. Chora is built on a hill 2 km away from the sea and there are many hotels both in the village and on the way down to the beaches. Gialos, the port of Ios, is just below the village and it has developed as a separate summer resort. Mylopotas is the other seaside settlement which is very close to Chora, and it has a large sandy beach with amenities, beach bars, water sports and hotels.

Small hotels and rooms to rent are also available around some of the larger beaches of Ios but in the evening you may be all alone there.

Which are the best beaches of Ios?

In a sunny day

Mylopotas and Manganari are the most popular beaches of Ios. They are large and sandy, with free space and sections with beach bars and amenities. The beaches of Psathi and Agia Theodoti are large as well but they are more secluded and never get too crowded, although they have working cantinas in summer. Gialos also has a sandy strip next to the port, and nearby are the beaches of Tzamaria and Koumbara.

For those looking for more privacy, Ios has beaches which are away from the settlements and can be reached by car via dirt roads. Such beaches are Loretzaina, Klima, Plakes and Kalamos. They are sandy and have no facilities at all.

What to do in Ios?

One of the squares

The list of sights and best things to do in Ios includes:

- Ios Chora with the church of Panagia Gremniotissa atop
- The Old Windmills of Ios near Chora
- Homer’s Tomb - the legend says that the poet Homer was buried in the northern part of island, near Plakoto beach
- The Skarkos Archeological Site, showing a well-preserved prehistoric settlement
- The ruins of the old castle Paleokastro, near Agia Theodoti
- Agia Irini Church near the pot of Gialos
- One-day trip to Santorini (the ride with speed boats takes 35 minutes)

How to get to Ios?

The ferry approaches the port of the island

Ios does not have an airport and it can be reached by ferry from mainland Greece or from another island of the group. The closest airports are in the islands of Santorini, Paros and Naxos.

The ferries from the ports of Piraues and Rafina take from 4 to 8 hours to reach Ios, depending on the vehicle type. In the summer there are also ferries which connect Ios with Heraklion (Crete)

Ios photo galleryx